“The Waiting Room” is the beautiful, feature debut of Academy-Award nominated writer/director Roger Golby. The sterling cast give ‘top-notch performances’ in their portrayal of two strangers – Anna (Anne-Marie Duff) and Stephen (Ralf Little) – who are brought together by chance as they sit together in a deserted waiting room. Here they make a brief but powerful connection, forgetting their individual lives for an isolated moment in time. As Stephen and Anna’s lives move onwards, they find themselves thinking more and more of the stranger they met in the waiting room – and what would happen should they meet again. This highly acclaimed and deeply moving film presents a fresh, edgy and totally romantic view of contemporary life and love in London.
2008 – Certificate: 15 – British Film
Rating Details: One strong sex scene and strong language
8.5 out of 10
On my way home from work two days ago I did a bit of food shopping. A sudden impulse buy was a bottle of brown sauce. I can’t remember the last time I bought any, but it must have been years ago. If I’d had any sense I’d have bought some decent stuff, like HP. Instead, I bought some cheap, Happy Shopper Brown Sauce. It tasted sort of okay, but it contains about a tonne of salt per gram. (No, I don’t know how that’s possible either; I guess it’s this sort of ‘new physics’ that makes the experiments being done with the Large Hadron Collider so exciting.) Using it gave me a sore throat and I could feel my arteries bulging as if they were about to explode, thanks to my suddenly elevated blood pressure. All in all it’s pretty toxic stuff. I can only imagine that a large-scale deployment of Happy Shopper Brown Sauce would probably cross someone’s “red line” somewhere or other… I’m glad I only have the one bottle. I’ve not checked frame by frame, but I’m not aware that this film contains any brown sauce, or sauce of any colour for that matter. If anyone spots any do let me know.
I can’t understand why this film isn’t better known. It’s set in Wandsworth, south London and features a lot of Southern Trains suburban services in it; I mean seriously, how much more cool and fashionable could it possibly get? It’s a story that revolves around three couples, their relationships and a chance meeting between two people in a waiting room at Wandsworth Common Station. This is a gentle but hugely touching film about ordinary people. Like many character-driven stories, it just sort of jumps into a period in their lives and then after a while it leaves them again, giving us a glimpse into their thoughts, feeling and actions. It has a number of scenes that provide the sort of emotional impact that all good films should and characters, though flawed, it’s still easy to sympathise with. Funny in places and intensely sad in others, at times it felt a bit too close to home for my linking, which is partly why it’s such a brilliant movie.
The soundtrack is generally restrained and unmemorable, but quietly gets on with business of extending the impact of the scenes it’s used in. A job well done.
Recommended for anyone who accepts that their life is as good as it’s ever going to get.
No cat, chainsaws or decapitation.
Top badass moment? Stephen, one of the two main characters, works in a nursing home. When my mum was in a nursing home all the care staff there seemed too overworked to really spend much time with the residents. Perhaps that’s the reality of it, but if any of them did ever have a bit of time on their hands, I’d have wanted them to be like Stephen.