Peter Feldman
1 minute read
6 Mar 2020
12:20 pm

‘The Photograph’ review: An undeveloped project

Peter Feldman

The film suffers from some stilted dialogue and forced chemistry between the key figures.

Lakeith Stanfield and Issa Rae in 'The Photograph'. Photo: Universal Pictures

Love is in the air in this heavily contrived romantic romp that doesn’t quite ignite the emotions.

Stella Maghie’s glossy production features upwardly mobile African-Americans coming to grips with the challenges they face in life.

Mae Morton, portrayed by Issa Rae. Mae is a young New York professional whose life takes a dramatic turn when she is left a safe-deposit box by her late, estranged mother, Christina Eames (Chanté Adams), a famous photographer.

Issa Rae and Lakeith Stanfield in ‘The Photograph’. Photo: Universal Pictures

Mae never got to know her mother and on her unexpected death she is left bewildered, angry and full of unanswered questions.
When a photograph is found in the box, Mae finds herself delving into her mother’s early life.

This triggers a romance with journalist Michael Block (played by Lakeith Stanfield), commissioned to write an article about the photographer’s life.

In flashbacks, we become privy to the choices Christina had to make on her way to the top, confronting a society in which black Americans were severely restricted in their career options.

Issa Rae in ‘The Photograph’. Photo: Universal Pictures

The film suffers from some stilted dialogue and forced chemistry between the key figures of Mae and Michael.

As a romantic saga, The Photograph is still undeveloped.


Rating: ★★☆☆☆
Cast: Issa Rae, Lakeith Stanfield, Chelsea Peretti, Kelvin Harrison Jr, Chanté Adams
Director: Stella Maghie
Classification: 16

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