Movie Review: My Architect
Alternate Title: Love the Art, Not the Artist
Story: Nathaniel Kahn was only 11 years old in 1974, when his famous father, architect Louis I. Kahn, was found dead on the men's room floor in Penn Station. His life was so mysterious (he had crossed out his address on his passport) that he remained unidentified for two days in the New York City Morgue. It turns out that Louis I. Kahn had three families. He had one legal wife and child plus long term relationships with two other women, with one child each - all who lived within a few miles on one another.
The loving search for the nature of his father, both as a man and an architect, was a five year labor of love and it turns out to be a great film. Through fascinating interviews it is constructed in chapters and like a well built structure its foundation is solid and when one steps back at the end of the film the whole picture seems very clear. It is emotional, loving and very personal. As he visits all of his father's major commissions we slowly learn about this man and his work.
This brilliant man's life was a mystery - but his work speaks volumes.
I was interested in the personal life of this very talented architect but became much more impressed by the film as an architecture primer. I don't know if Nathaniel Kahn knew that by creating this film he would also end up presenting a wonderful portrait of his father's work that should be a 'must see' for anyone interested in great buildings and their concepts.
To view some of Louis I. Kahn's great buildings how about checking out this website: Louis I. Kahn - Great Buildings Online
Acting: Not applicable in a documentary.
Predilection: I like documentaries and I like films about artists.
Critters: Two dogs and some cows.
Food: Do not remember any food.
Visual Art: The whole film was about art and architecture. There were many sketches, drawings, prints and paintings throughout.
Soundtrack: A little sappy but appropriate.
Opening Titles: Interesting background clips showing Nathanial researching old newspaper items on a computer screen.
Theater Audience: Packed
Tissue Usage: The three of us used varying numbers of tissues- even I shed one tear.
Oscar Worthy: Why not?
Nit Picking: The art was too great to by nit picky.
Big Screen or Rental: It is only showing in one theater in Manhattan and is held over for another two weeks. It is brought to us by HBO/Cinemax so I would imagine that it will be appearing on your TV screen sometime soon.
Length: Under two hours.
LOBO HOWLS: 8