One Hour Photo is a 2002 American psychological thriller written and directed by Mark Romanek and starring Robin Williams. Fox Searchlight Pictures distributed the film in the United States. One Hour Photo also starred Connie Nielsen, Michael Vartan, Gary Cole, and Eriq La Salle. Williams won a Saturn Award for Best Actor (2003) for his work in the film.
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Seymour "Sy" Parrish, a mini-lab photo technician at SavMart's one-hour photo developing clinic in suburban Los Angeles, leads a depressing, solitary life outside of the "heaven-like", hyperreality atmosphere of the department store. Every day he labors to ensure his customers get the best quality photos possible; his work is his life, as he has no one and nothing to go home to at the end of each day. As each workday comes to an end, Sy falls into the inescapable routine of spending his evenings sitting alone in his barren living room, watching television. The only thing in Sy's immaculate apartment he has for companionship is a hamster, caged in his bedroom.
His favorite customers are the Yorkin family: husband Will (Michael Vartan), wife Nina (Connie Nielsen), and their son, Jake (Dylan Smith). He has done their photos for years and, over time, has developed an obsession with the family; he idolizes their happiness and affluence, memorizes every personal detail about them that he can learn, and finally begins to stalk them. Sy secretly makes his own copies of the Yorkins' photos from the film negatives and then puts them on a wall in his apartment in a massive collage. Most of all, he fantasizes about being a member of their family and sharing in the love he assumes they must feel. He is painfully shy, however, and his awkward attempts to become closer to the family are gently rebuffed.
Sy eventually manages to spark a connection to Nina when he pretends to have interest in a book he noticed she had purchased on a particular day in the store. For the first time, Nina asks Sy personal questions about his life, realizing that he is indeed a lonely man, something only Jake had noticed earlier. The next day, his boss Bill (Gary Cole) fires him for stealing prints. While inspecting his photos for the last time, Sy discovers that Will is having an affair, and his idyllic conception of the Yorkins as the 'perfect' family is shattered. He comes to hate and envy Will, who has everything Sy longs for, yet doesn't seem to appreciate it.
After losing his job, Sy stalks and takes pictures of Bill's young daughter as revenge for firing him, leading to a police investigation against him. While detectives Van Der Zee and Outerbridge (Eriq La Salle and Clark Gregg) are discovering Sy's obsession, Sy confronts Will and his mistress, Maya (Erin Daniels), during a rendezvous in their hotel room. Armed with a knife and a camera, Sy forces the lovers to pose naked while he takes pictures. After the confrontation, as Sy just sits on the bed in his hotel room, he discovers that the police have arrived in the hotel and tries to escape. The alarm sounds and Van Der Zee pursues him while Outerbridge discovers Will and Maya, physically unharmed but emotionally traumatized. After a chase, the police finally apprehend Sy in the parking garage as he attempts to make a break for his car. Upon being arrested, Sy claims, "I just took pictures".
The final scene is set in a police interrogation room where Van Der Zee asks Sy why he terrorized the Yorkins, to which Sy indirectly reveals that his father had made him do "sick, disgusting things that no kid should ever have to do". (The implication, confirmed by Romanek, is that Sy's father exploited him for child pornography.) As the detective prepares to take his confession, Sy asks for the pictures he took at the hotel, which the detective has described as "evidence". They appear to be only shots of household objects and interior furnishings he took after the incident in the hot
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