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Sundance 2019 Film Review: “Photograph” (2019) ★★★★


When it comes to capturing arranged marriage in Indian cinema, it always goes beyond the standard and delivers that poignant moment we may miss due the lack of knowledge of their colorfully rich culture.

“Photograph” revolves around its central character, Rafi, who promises not to build a family of his own until he pays off his father’s debt and returns their lost house. But his grandmother, who is about to visit him, wants him to reconsider his decision and get him married as soon as possible. While that seems not doable for Rafi, after meeting Miloni at the Gateway of India, he asks her to pretend to be her companion to please his grandma. And it is when he slowly develops a much deeper feeling for her, without having an idea how to confess about that.

“Photograph” from Ritesh Batra offers as extraordinary journey of two extremely kind-hearted people, Miloni and Rafi. He is a street photographer while she is busy studying. He is handsome and she is a beautiful young woman. By looking at them, you know they’re meant to be together. But instead of following the cliché, the two begin exploring who they are, while his grandma, Dadi, tries to find out more about Miloni and whether if she is the right woman for her dear grandson.

“Photograph” is a like a beautiful picture you want to keep staring at. It’s humble, profound, and deeply moving. Written lines are intelligent and provide food for thought. Every scene is filled with heart and soul, while the amazing performances of its lead stars breathe life into it, turning it into an immortal masterpiece.

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