Waiting had the cutest trailer which released over a month before the movie and piqued my interest. Watching this on the back of Nil Battey Sannata – was expecting something quite similar.
The concept is indeed unique, relate-able and very very fresh. The word Waiting comes from ‘Waiting Room’ – Naseeruddin Shah & Kalki are the spouses of two patients stranded (?) in the waiting room of a posh Kochi hospital. And such waits are agonizing – often as in this case there is no timeline, nothing concrete to look forward to every day and a lot of agonizing moping around. The movie does show us this through the monotony of keeping vigil, the moments of solitude which you try to share, the stages of grief the loved ones of a patient are likely to go through.
Different people also react to these situations differently, and that is the premise of the core story within the movie. The director uses the first half an hour to contrast the two central characters – Old world, suave, zen-like Professor who lives his peaceful life of solitude in pleasant Kochi offering coffee (or Cochin as the movie keeps referring to it) who keeps his issues and problems to himself and asks ‘what’s the point of Twitter?’. Posh, loud, social-media savvy, expletive-dropping Tara from Mumbai with millions of axes to grind with the whole world. Both heavily loaded in cliches and stereotypes. And how while their inherent honesty to each other and the situation draws them together, how their world-view and philsophy to life eventually influences the decisions they make. Is the Professor only holding on because once he loses his wife, he will have to reinvent his life and give it a new meaning? Is Tara shying away from surgery for her husband because she is scared of being bound down by an invalid husband?
These are some very genuine and valid questions which come up in I am sure everyone’s minds. The problem is I think, the movie seems to conveniently avoid answering how the protagonists change their mind – either that, or in all humility – I did not get that part. The catharsis seems slightly forced over a night of bacchanalia (well, if that term applies to 2 individuals :P). The flashbacks while really sweet, only served the purpose of showing the fickleness of life and ended up feeling a tad too long.
So while it has it’s moments – Waiting does not really stick or stay as a whole. Those moments though do with some lovely dialogues (most of which are already in the trailer) – Rajat Kapoor has an excellent role as a Doctor who doesn’t mind playing God for the greater good, Tara’s friend laying it on thick as the overbearing friend who causes us all to suffocate and the amiable colleague from SciTech. Unfortunately though – the two protagonists can never rise above their cliches. All in all a great concept for a short TV movie, but just not enough meat I felt for a full length feature film.