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Gorgeous visuals, an affecting love story, and simmering chemistry between Issa Rae and Lakeith Stanfield keep The Photograph solidly in focus. Read critic reviews

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Movie Info

When famed photographer Christina Eames dies unexpectedly, she leaves her estranged daughter, Mae, hurt, angry and full of questions. When Mae finds a photograph tucked away in a safe-deposit box, she soon finds herself delving into her mother's early life -- an investigation that leads to an unexpected romance with a rising journalist.

Cast & Crew

Y'lan Noel
Young Isaac
Rob Morgan
Isaac Jefferson
Stella Meghie
Screenwriter
Stella Meghie
Executive Producer
Mark Schwartzbard
Cinematographer
Shannon Baker Davis
Film Editor
Robert Glasper
Original Music
Loren Weeks
Production Design
Geoffrey A. Ehrlich
Art Director
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News & Interviews for The Photograph

Critic Reviews for The Photograph

All Critics (109) | Top Critics (40) | Fresh (81) | Rotten (28)

  • It's a beguiling combination at first, but the surrounding story is too clunky, the revelations too telegraphed.

    March 10, 2020 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…
  • Simply put, Michael and Mae don't get enough time to just be, though a sequel could fix that.

    March 9, 2020 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…
  • Luxuriantly sensual and unashamedly romantic, The Photograph is a cat's cradle of connecting love stories, spun across states, decades and continents.

    March 9, 2020 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…
  • It's hard to imagine even the most susceptible audiences caring whether this bland couple get it together.

    March 7, 2020 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…
  • What luck, then, that Stella Meghie's film returns to its stronger elements so often.

    March 4, 2020 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…
  • Revel... in the subtle back-and-forth of becoming smitten, the glances, touches, silences. Think of it as a dance movie, a good one.

    March 4, 2020 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for The Photograph

  • Feb 14, 2020
    The Photograph is a romantic drama that is unfortunately tethered to three very uninteresting lead characters. They all have potential; a journalist (Lakeith Stanfield) getting closer to a story than he anticipated, a woman (Issa Rae) learning more about her artistic, ambitious, and self-involved mother (Chante Adams) after her death. The problem is that these characters all feel trapped in boxes, confined, and the personal growth onscreen is minimal. Sure, we still get the boy-meets-girl and boy-loses-girl paces expected but there's precious little depth given to these people. It feels like writer/director Stella Meghie (Everything Everything) should be mining more insights and revelations from this mother/daughter re-examination, but by the end we haven't learned anything we didn't already know in the first thirty minutes. It's a strange experience because even as things are, on paper, moving forward, the movie feels stagnant. This is also a byproduct of the nascent chemistry between Stanfield and Rae, two genial, good-looking people that just don't have that spark or urgency when they're comfortably close. It's a movie that seems to stay in the same languid gear throughout the movie, even as the couple is progressively getting closer. It's a competently made movie with good actors but my mind kept wandering and wondering what a full movie following the mother chasing her dreams might resemble, or a full movie following Lil Rel Howery (Get Out) and his adorable family, the character who entertained me the most. The story elements are here for an engaging and potent romantic drama but the mix feels undercooked and stale. Nate's Grade: C+
    Nate Z Super Reviewer

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