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My Architect: A Son's Journey

My Architect: A Son's Journey (2004)



Average Rating: 7.6/10
Reviews Counted: 91
Fresh: 85 | Rotten: 6

A moving and enlightening documentary about architect Louis Kahn.


Average Rating: 7.7/10
Critic Reviews: 28
Fresh: 28 | Rotten: 0

A moving and enlightening documentary about architect Louis Kahn.



liked it
Average Rating: 3.8/5
User Ratings: 3,805

My Rating

Movie Info

Louis Kahn, a giant among twentieth-century architects, left a legacy of brilliantly designed and engineered buildings that have a tough beauty and deep spirit. His work challenges us to discover an astonishing sensibility and poetry through light, space, and texture. Kahn's personal life was even more mysterious, and his death, alone and unidentified in Penn Station in 1974, revealed that he led not a double but a triple life, shuttling between his legitimate family and two women and the

Feb 15, 2005


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All Critics (104) | Top Critics (33) | Fresh (85) | Rotten (6) | DVD (11)

The young Kahn is not a graceful filmmaker. Yet the subject matter is engrossing for anyone interested in architecture and also one of its greatest practitioners.

March 25, 2004
Arizona Republic
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Isn't a bad place to begin if you're curious about architecture and don't know much about Louis Kahn.

March 19, 2004 Full Review Source: Orlando Sentinel
Orlando Sentinel
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By the end of My Architect, Kahn has learned that the central contradiction of his father's life can't be resolved -- and that realization becomes the filmmaker's solace and the film's triumph.

March 19, 2004
Denver Rocky Mountain News
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The finest achievement of My Architect is the way the son locates the light of his father's personality.

March 19, 2004 Full Review Source: Denver Post
Denver Post
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It is a stunning work that captures with elegance -- and touches of lyricism -- the challenge of finding the man through the artist.

February 27, 2004 Full Review Source: Miami Herald
Miami Herald
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My Architect contrasts personal history and public legacy to captivating effect.

February 20, 2004 Full Review Source: Toronto Star
Toronto Star
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Overall [Nathaniel Kahn's] attempt to find his father in his buildings, scars and all, is credible and well-paced, with neat visual rhymes that circle back to points raised earlier.

June 3, 2008 Full Review Source: Paste Magazine
Paste Magazine

What makes this movie riveting is not its subject, but the huge hole evident in the biographer's soul, a space he desperately tries to fill by speaking with those once close to his father.

May 2, 2007 Full Review Source: Princeton Town Topics
Princeton Town Topics

Fascinating -- if somewhat overlong -- documentary.

April 27, 2005 Full Review Source: Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)
Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)

The film becomes a conversation between the living and the dead, trying to reconcile professional genius and personal failure.

June 18, 2004 Full Review Source: Des Moines Register
Des Moines Register

We are powerfully gripped by Lou's life and work, but we're never as moved by Nathaniel's quest as we clearly should be.

June 5, 2004 Full Review Source: Shadows on the Wall
Shadows on the Wall

Fascinating and engaging.

May 12, 2004

The film would have been more powerful if it had conveyed a better understanding of what made Kahn's buildings great. If a bit long, the film is always intriguing.

May 7, 2004 Full Review Source:

A very warm, lyrical, humorous, moving and insightful film.

April 24, 2004 Full Review Source: Ozus' World Movie Reviews
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

makes its mark on the cinematic landscape as a fitting memorial-to Louis Kahn specifically, and to the artistic spirit in a more universal sense

April 5, 2004 Full Review Source: Old School Reviews
Old School Reviews

Movies about acrimony between mothers and daughters are a dime a dozen. But it's difficult to find one about the tensions between fathers and sons.

April 2, 2004 Full Review Source: Sacramento Bee | Comment (1)
Sacramento Bee

Kahn and cinematographer Robert Richman work miracles, capturing the majesty and beauty of Kahn's buildings.

April 1, 2004 Full Review Source: St. Paul Pioneer Press
St. Paul Pioneer Press

As My Architect blossoms into a reunion of Kahn's human and artistic legacy, we see how changing light and passing time animate all our lives.

April 1, 2004
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

Kahn's triumph is a small-scale monument to one of the deepest human needs, the longing for a bridge between man and his maker.

March 25, 2004 Full Review Source: Boulder Weekly

Students of architecture will probably find more to like than students of filmmaking

March 24, 2004 Full Review Source: Movie Habit
Movie Habit

While primarily a film about a man searching for roots, "My Architect" also pays tribute to the folks who make such monumental structures.

March 22, 2004 Full Review Source: Roanoke Times (Virginia)
Roanoke Times (Virginia)

A showcase of Louis Kahn's genius and an artistic triumph for his son.

March 18, 2004 Full Review Source: ReelTalk Movie Reviews
ReelTalk Movie Reviews

Audience Reviews for My Architect: A Son's Journey

Deeply moving, the poignant and moving documentary I wanted about Louis Kahn, poet, philosopher, architect and inevitably, as a man. This one I will be looking into for strength as the years go by. Louis Kahn's spirit is alive with it!
June 9, 2012
Adriel Lim

Super Reviewer

I'm sorry, but this was just too long and extremely uninteresting. Yes, Louis Kahn was a great architect, but it doesn't mean he is warranted a complete psychological analysis post-mortem. I feel bad for his son, but it doesn't mean I want to spend two hours with him sorting out his daddy issues.
February 16, 2010

Super Reviewer

[font=Century Gothic]"My Architect: A Son's Journey" is a documentary by and about Nathaniel Kahn on an emotional odyssey seeking to understand his father, Louis Kahn, who died at the age of 73, bankrupt, of a heart attack in a bathroom in Penn Station, New York City on the way back from India. At the time, Nathaniel was 11. Louis Kahn was an acclaimed architect. He also had three separate families. Throughout the film, Nathaniel talks to family members, former colleagues and cab drivers who all recall his father.[/font]
[font=Century Gothic][/font]
[font=Century Gothic]"My Architect: A Son's Journey" is about what we leave behind after we die. Louis Kahn left behind more than most. This includes not only the fabulous buildings that he helped build(and one very, very cool boat), but also the three families and the three women who loved him. [/font]
December 7, 2005
Walter M.

Super Reviewer

Terribly dull at times. Frankly, this man shouldn't be sharing his architect.
January 27, 2012
John Ballantine

Super Reviewer

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Foreign Titles

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  • My Architect - A Son's Journey (UK)
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