The light and whimsical blueprints and inventions of husband and wife Charles and Ray Eames — American designers whose influence stretched into modern architecture, graphic design, furniture and fine art, as well as film — left a mark in both the United States and abroad, spawning a famous namesake chair and much more. Directed by Jason Cohn and Bill Jersey, this documentary provides a solid look-see at both the couple’s creative instincts and collaborations as well as their sometimes tortured love for one another.
Narrated by James Franco, Eames: The Architect and the Painter is — like Vidal Sassoon: The Movie, L’Amour Fou and a good handful of other nonfiction titles that have, as of late, lifted up figureheads of fashion, perfume, architecture and culinary design — a movie with a somewhat thinly prescribed demographic of inherent heightened interest. And yet Cohn and Jersey make enough concessions to a general audience to keep things fairly lively for viewers of all levels of familiarity with any of the Eames’ story. Clips from their many educational, experimental and promotional filmstrips are interspersed throughout here, with enough of a mooring to the world around them that even those interested in post-war boomer and ’60s culture will find it pretty interesting.
Housed in a regular plastic Amaray case, Eames comes to DVD presented in 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen, with a Dolby digital 2.0 stereo track. Supplemental extras consist of a clutch of bonus scenes and tidbits, which add further color to the Eames’ unusual and varied lives. To purchase the DVD via Amazon, click here; for more information or to purchase the title directly via First Run, click here. B (Movie) B- (Disc)