The Waiting Room (15)

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The ViewLondon Review

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Review byMatthew Turner04/06/2008

Three out of Five stars
Running time: 110 mins

Enjoyable, low-key and nicely written British romcom with strong performances from a talented cast.

What's it all about?
Directed by Roger Goldby, The Waiting Room opens with a couple, Anna (Anne-Marie Duff) and George (Rupert Graves), hurrying home with their two kids, sticking the telly on and then rushing upstairs to have sex. All very well, except you then find out that they're actually having an affair and that George is married to Jemma (the lovely Zoe Telford) and lives next door (one of the kids is his; Anna's a single parent).

Meanwhile, care worker Steven (Ralf Little – or rather Ralf Not-So-Little as his all-too-frequent nude scenes keep insisting) is having doubts about his own long-term relationship and when he briefly meets Anna at Wandsworth Station, neither of them can get the other out of their minds.

The Good
This is a nicely acted and sharply written little British romcom, even if you're in no doubt whatsoever as to how it's going to end. Ralf Little and Anne-Marie Duff make very appealing leads and you really root for them to find each other again.

In addition, Zoe Telford is excellent as Jemma and there's strong support from Frank Finlay, as a patient at Steven's care home, and from Phyllida Law, who breathes new life into the elderly-dying-patient-with-words-of-wisdom cliche.

The Bad
That said, though the script works hard to avoid the usual romcom trappings, you do feel a little short-changed by the lack of an Affair Revelation scene. It's also slightly inconsistent in that Jemma is repeatedly horrible to George and yet suddenly she's the one upset about their relationship.

Similarly, it's hard to reconcile the happiness of the opening scene with the enormity of the affair that George and Anna are embarking on, especially given Jemma's subsequent relationship with Anna.

Worth seeing?
In short, despite a couple of minor flaws, The Waiting Room is a very sweet, very watchable British romcom with a likeable cast and a decent script. Nice use of Wandsworth, too. Worth seeing.

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The Waiting Room (15)
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Content updated: 20/09/2018 23:51

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