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Overall Rating
2.74

Awesome: 13.24%
Worth A Look: 25%
Average: 20.59%
Pretty Bad: 4.41%
Total Crap36.76%

7 reviews, 26 user ratings


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Waiting...
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by Scott Weinberg

"The satirical material trumps the stupid gross stuff ... barely."
3 stars

Rob McKittrick's "Waiting" is clearly and obviously a "first-time director" affair; the flick is sloppily constructed and frequently aimless. Way too much time is spent on subplots and gross-out running gags that (annoyingly) go nowhere, and several members of the expansive ensemble are given practically nothing to do. So yeah, it's a messy and scattershot debut, to be sure ... but there's still some comedy gold hidden in them hills, and if you've ever worked in any sort of "theme" restaurant, you'll find a lot to enjoy here.

Waiting desperately wants to be "Clerks in a restaurant" or "Office Space Goes to Bennigan's." It's populated by broad and goofy caricatures who lampoon the flaws and foibles inherent in one of the world's most unrewarding professions. And, for about 60% of the flick's running time, it succeeds in fine form. The rest of the stuff? Not so hot.

I worked in an Applebee's for the better part of three years, so believe me when I tell you that Waiting's best bits (of which there are a few handfuls) are clever, knowing, and witty gags indeed. From the colorful cast of misfit food-servers to the raunchy and irritable kitchen staff, the jerkface customers and their paltry gratuities, the corporate-stooge manager, the camaraderie, the frustration, and the parties. Practically all of this stuff shines in Waiting. First-time writer/director Rob McKittrick successfully skewers so many of the restaurant conventions that I'm willing to forgive a few of the filmmaker's more annoying indulgences.

Subplots involving a new hire, a "testicle" game, a waiter's "stage fright" at the urinal, another server's impending promotion ... all of these bits start out amiably goofy enough -- before they're run into the ground in merciless fashion. A more experienced director would know to keep these subplots balanced in a more efficient fashion -- or, more likely, he'd simply realize that they're not all that funny and they'd soon hit the cutting room floor.

But for all its indulgences and infantilism, there's some really funny stuff to be found here. McKittrick was fortunate enough to get Ryan Reynolds as his leading man -- and nobody does "old-school Chevy Chase" like Ryan Reynolds does. The rascally actor is aloof, sarcastic, dismissive, and entirely enjoyable here, as he often is when he's makin' with the funny. Other members of the ensemble who earn their paycheck include David Koechner as the mega-dorky manager, Dane Cook as a furious line-cook, and Alanna Ubach as a waitress just one step away from a volcanic meltdown. Oddly, the normally-quite-funny Anna Faris and Justin Long aren't given all that many punch-lines, although they do fine work with the skimpiesh roles they're given.

The trailers and posters are accurate: If you've ever waited tables in an Applebee's, a Bennigan's, a Friday's, a Ruby Tuesday's, or any of the other bland corporate food stations, you'll experience a lot of familiar torture as Waiting plays on. But the fun part is: You're not the server anymore. Sure, the flick panders and relies way too heavily on the easy gross-out gags, but I choose to see those bits as the half-decent appetizers that complement the main course. And as a parody of the corporate restaurant scene, Waiting has more than enough snarky insight to balance its numerous and often unnecessary trips to the potty.

Although I can easily acknowledge the movie's blunders and shortcomings, I'd be lying if I didn't say that "Waiting" had me laughing out loud at least 10 or 12 times. So while it's a messy, broad, gross, and fairly obvious little comedy -- it's really tough to muster much hatred for a flick that delivers the chuckles. It's no "Clerks" and it's sure no "Office Space," but "Waiting" surely comes close enough to warrant a visit from the comedy fans. And the frat boys will absolutely eat the thing up.

link directly to this review at http://www.efilmcritic.com/review.php?movie=13160&reviewer=128
originally posted: 10/07/05 15:51:07
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User Comments

4/06/13 Jeff Wilder Familiar stuff. But entertaining. 3 stars
1/28/11 Brian Contains few jokes that don't feel forced. A pathetic, shameless Clerks rip-off. 2 stars
8/25/10 Bunky Saw it last night - utterly shithouse. Gobsmacked that anyone could give it 4 stars 1 stars
2/16/10 art ONLY WATCH IT IF YOU"RE THAT DESPERATE! 1 stars
1/10/10 Lynn Greeting. The best of us must sometimes eat our words. Help me! Could you help me find site 2 stars
2/22/09 Tony Justin Long's character never had a F@&% you scene. What a waste of potential comedy. 2 stars
4/26/08 L Man It's funny, so who gives a fuck if it isn't original or groundbreaking. 4 stars
2/15/08 matthew A great comedy in the vein of Clerks, I think a sequel is needed 5 stars
7/16/07 Total Crap Funny Ass Movie, man. Saw it on Showtime, look it up. 5 stars
5/03/07 Jefenator Laughed out loud multiple times - rare feat for a comedy, these days. 5 stars
5/02/07 Tracey Chambers laughed my ass off 5 stars
2/09/07 ES A good flick, laughs and a bit of a moral in there as well 4 stars
2/08/07 UGB Crap - waste of time 1 stars
8/05/06 Indrid Cold More consistently funny than Clerks, to which it obviously owes a debt. 5 stars
7/23/06 Joe "Waiting..." has its moments, but the stupid "penis game" gag drags it down. 3 stars
4/22/06 Becky Funny, Ryan Rynolds and Justin Long are great. "Smartest person with down syndrome!" 5 stars
4/09/06 KRIS FUNNY A LITTLE TOO MUCH BUT YES SOME TRUTH I WORKED AT BENNIGANS FOR FIVE YRS THE SAME ONE 4 stars
3/19/06 Eevil Wolfie Sweet Zombie Jesus!!! Thats funny shit. 4 stars
3/04/06 Ariadne Christina Renee Gladstone Fart-joke hater calls this average. Talk about straining gnats&swallowing elephants! 1 stars
3/02/06 Rissa I laughed untill my stomach hurt. It mase sense to any on who has every been treated like 5 stars
2/11/06 Dan Hillarious... anyone who has worked in a restaurant will love this 5 stars
1/25/06 Jenny Tullwartz AF fans in mourning, if you think she's bad in THIS, DON'T see JUST FRIENDS! 1 stars
1/11/06 Another Anna Faris Fan In Mourning Yep Indeed, Anna was more innocent farting in bathtub & shitting in cat litterbox! 1 stars
1/11/06 Anna Faris fan in mourning Anna Faris, so sweet in SCARY MOVIE movies, now made into a total smartass! 1 stars
11/04/05 Waitress Laughed alot. 4 stars
10/09/05 Tiffany Parker Kinda like Empire Records in a restaurant 5 stars
IF YOU'VE SEEN THIS FILM, RATE IT!
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USA
  07-Oct-2005 (R)
  DVD: 07-Feb-2006

UK
  N/A

Australia
  01-Dec-2005


Directed by
  Rob McKittrick

Written by
  Rob McKittrick

Cast
  Ryan Reynolds
  Anna Faris
  Justin Long
  Luis Guzmán
  David Koechner
  Chi McBride



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