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One Hour Photo (2002)

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An employee of a one-hour photo lab becomes obsessed with a young suburban family.



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6 wins & 21 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Maya Burson
Yoshi Araki
Marion Calvert ...
Mrs. Von Unwerth
David Moreland ...
Mr. Siskind
Shaun P. O'Hagan ...
Young Father
Amateur Porn Guy
Sav-Mart Clerk
Soccer Coach


Middle aged Sy Parrish works as a technician at a one hour photo lab located in a SavMart store in a suburban mall. Sy is a lonely man, never having had any friends. He knows much about his customers through the photographs they have developed. But he knows more about the Yorkin family - specifically Nina Yorkin and her adolescent son Jake Yorkin, the two in the family who drop off and pick up the family's photofinishing - the family about whom he is obsessed, than anyone else. Nina's husband, Will Yorkin, is incidental to his obsession since Sy has only seen him in photographs. Sy's obsession includes fantasizing about being their favorite "Uncle Sy". He has even been making an extra set of prints for himself of all of their photographs since Jake was a newborn. After an incident at work and after Sy finds out more about the family through a set of photographs, he decides to right the injustices he sees in the only way he knows how. His actions demonstrate his true mental state. Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


The things that we fear the most have already happened to us... See more »


Drama | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for sexual content and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:



Release Date:

13 September 2002 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Retratos de una obsesión  »

Box Office


$12,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$1,037,361 (Spain) (23 August 2002)


$31,597,131 (USA) (3 January 2003)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


In preparation for his role, Robin Williams trained for two and a half days at a photo developing training facility in Southern California on an Agfa MSC 101-D photo developing machine. See more »


When Bill confronts Sy in the breakroom over his argument with Larry, Sy's tie changes between camera angles. See more »


Bill Owens: [finishes flicking through candid pictures of his daughter] Motherfucker!
See more »


References Psycho (1960) See more »


My Reverie
Written by Larry Clinton
Performed by Bea Wain with the Larry Clinton Orchestra
Courtesy of The RCA Records Label, a unit of BMG Entertainment
Under license from BMG Special Products
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User Reviews

I sincerely enjoyed this film
27 January 2003 | by (Florida Keys) – See all my reviews

One Hour Photo is a film of supreme caliber. The film is powered by the haunting, chilling, silencing, and above all-genius performance by Robin Williams. But the rather extraordinary thing is that it is not Robin Williams on the screen, it's Sy Parish (the character's name). Robin Williams fades away from our senses and slips into the ever so sweet and innocent yet psychotic role of a supermarket's photo developer. The films script is only accented by Williams, at times, restrained performance. Williams ignites on the screen and burns till the last frame, and you are unable to take your eyes off him. As I mentioned the film is subliminily written as well as directed. Though being Romanek's first, I certainly don't think this is a bad start. Romanek's direction adds to the on-going tension throughout the film. More affecting is Williams' delightful calmness. Trying to hold himself in becomes more troublesome for both Williams and his character as the story develops. Yet through the calm eyes of an innocent blaze the fires of hatred and intensity, which could very well sum up Williams' performance. The film does have some disturbing images as well. Yet they are not really strong enough for you to get up from your seat and leave yet rather the opposite. Williams' contribution as well as guidance towards the actions and scenes of peril compell as well as amaze you towards both the performance and film itself. Williams' shocking contribution to the screen is enough to make you cry, scream, and yell in your seat. Because the origins of the character are bittersweet just like own known Williams, leads to a crazed and psychotic breakdown. It's as if watching our own funny and beloved Robin fail us. Though the truth could not be any further, Williams but succeeds in the art of acting, creating an achievement in the field. Creating a landmark. Writing his/its own chapter. I guarantee that this film will be required study material in acting classes for now on. In conclusion: definitely one of the best of 2002.

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Recent Posts
who else could have played Sy? wanderingjew19
Was Sy an abused child??? toddjacobucci2002
Family Picture at the end wdemon85
This was actually my favorite of the all roles Robin Williams played MissGoldHeart
Hotel room scene just another fantasy? stuckinazoo
Sy a Victim of Sexual Abuse? monica9965
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