Saturday, February 04, 2006


Don't fuck with the people who handle your food.

Rob McKittrick drives that point home several times in his writing and directorial debut, to sickening effect. The movie is obviously a tribute to Kevin Smith's Clerks. The material is a direct rip of it's structure. It has witty dialogue, with trendy, and movie related references, crude humor and it all takes place in a workplace environment. Unfortunately it doesn't elevate enough to be special like Clerks was. In the end the movie is just another forgettable low brow comedy, with a couple of cheap laughs.

The thing is I doubt the film had any higher aspirations than just being a silly, forgettable comedy, which means it's probably a success for Rob McKittrick.

Waiting is about the workers in a restaurant called Shenanigans which is a type of T.G.I.F Fridays. Throughout the course of a work day, Dean (Justin Long) contemplates his future, Monty (Ryan Reynolds) trains the new kid, and the Cooks of the restaurant (played by Luis Guzman and Dane Cook) harass the co-workers, drop and spit on the food they prepare, and play a game where the object is to get others to look at their penis and ball sack.

The first thing people will notice when watching the movie is that it's obviously low budget. The production value feels cheap, the cinematography is weak, and the direction is mediocre to poor. The movie survives being barely watchable by the affable nature of it's comic cast. For a low budget film, it's a little bit surprising to see Luis Guzman, Ryan Reynolds, Chi Mcbride and Anna Farris. In all honesty, I can't imagine what drew this caliber of talent to a project like this. Not that this talent is an A-List crowd, but the writing really isn't that impressive, actually it's kind of juvenile. I can only speculate that they were all either paid REALLY well.... or that they were good friends with the director.

Being a server in my past, I found some of the restaurant references kind of funny, also the relationships with the co-workers and customers were amusing. But the fact is, I'm easy to please when toilet humor is involved, so I was able to find a little comedy in the film, but I'm sure a lot of people will not be so easily amused.

The movie really is just about watching some actors having fun, while making money. It's barely a movie. I almost feel guilty for ripping the film, because it's obvious that this is McKittrick's first film, and he is just starting out in the business. I'm sure it was just an accomplishment getting this talent assembled.

Which makes me question why I'm even reviewing this film.

It's obvious that McKittrick needs to develop his writing more though, if he wants to have a future in the business. He does have some potential for witty, amusing, dialogue. The script is not totally incompetent, but the movie just didn't feel polished or ready, it feels almost like a first draft. Honestly, I wouldn't be surprised if half the film was improvised. I'd be slightly curious to hear the back story of how, and why this film was made, but I'm really not interested enough to do the research.

If one is interested..... Waiting is available on DVD on Tuesday.


Benson said...

For some reason, I think ryan reynolds is funny in everything Ive seen him in. And yes, that includes Blade 3. Your review sounds like everything I could ever wat (or expect) from a ryan reynolds movie. Keep up the good reviews man.

Melody said...

Being a Restaurant Industry Veteran myself, I am defiantly renting this one!