Metascore
79

Generally favorable reviews - based on 12 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 10 out of 12
  2. Negative: 0 out of 12
  1. Nachtwey's pictures tell a tale of grief and suffering, and Frei's you-are-there approach gives those photos startling immediacy.
  2. Reviewed by: Noel Murray
    50
    The scenes of death, starvation, and destruction are affecting, but they don't say much about the actual subject of the film.
  3. Indelible images and brilliant use of unconventional music make this a nonfiction film that must be seen – and heard – to be believed.
  4. Finally, the film answers a question that obviously haunts Nachtwey: Is it immoral, callous or irresponsible to win fame and recognition from images of the terror, death and suffering of others?
  5. Reviewed by: Phil Hall
    60
    While the images presented here are peerless, James Nachtwey is a fascinating individual and it is a shame we cannot learn more about the man behind these extraordinary images.
  6. 89
    The images this war photographer shoots are beyond awful, but there's just no looking away.
  7. What's remarkable is how often the photographer's subjects allow themselves to be caught on film; it's as if they understood implicitly that Nachtwey was there not only to agitate for reform but to memorialize their agony. He does both.
  8. Documenting war is a small, partial but indispensable step toward its eventual eradication. Mr. Frei's quiet, engrossing film is a sad and stirring testimony to this vision and to the quiet, self-effacing heroism with which Mr. Nachtwey has pursued it.
  9. 70
    The photographer's show-don't-tell stance is admirable, but it can make him a problematic documentary subject. War Photographer infers the psychological and physical toll of his peripatetic existence, but provides scant insight into his technique.
  10. 75
    A misleadingly bland title for a gripping documentary.
  11. Reviewed by: Ken Fox
    80
    Frei assembles a fascinating profile of a deeply humanistic artist who, in spite of all that he's witnessed, remains surprisingly idealistic, and retains an extraordinary faith in the ability of images to communicate the truth of the world around him.

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