Film Review: The Waiting City

Published:  July 14, 2010
Film Review: The Waiting City

Going into the screening of The Waiting City I had very little knowledge of the film itself. On paper it is a story of an outwardly happy Australian couple who head to India to collect their child. Having already waited two years to meet their daughter, they are further postponed with the news their adoption has yet to be finalised. Being personally interested in adoption, I was intrigued to hear Claire McCarthy’s artistic statement on the topic, who not only wrote but also directed the film.

The movie however was less about adoption and focused more on relationship dynamics instead. Radha Mitchell and Joel Edgerton, the lead characters in the film, were constructed as relatable polar opposites. Edgerton, who plays Ben in the film is a kind of man child, concerned more about holding onto and reliving his past, than embracing the responsibilities of adulthood. Whereas Fiona, played by Mitchell, embodies the quintessential workaholic whose greatest concern is scheduling the couples marriage and this adoption around her work.


The film confronts the poignant topic of fixing a relationship with the introduction of a child, whilst opening audiences eyes to how quickly we can controlled by and lost in our environment. How quickly our day to day context can dictate who we become – usually without conscious thought. In our culture it is so easy to loose sight and be consumed and it can often take a cultural shock, such as that featured in the film, to bring us back to reality and remind us of our true priorities.


The most endearing character in the film was that of Samrat Chakrabarti, who played Krishna the couples liaison. Eager to please, yet occasionally outspoken, Krishna is often the catalyst for most of the couples growth and self discovery. With an apparent warmth for not only Calcutta, but its people, director McCarthy has portrayed India in a refreshingly honest light.


Dealing with a myriad of issues, The Waiting City takes you along what I believe to be a relatable journey. The film is a visually compelling story, and easy watch and a promising first film from a talented new director…but probably one you can do in the comfort of your own home.

In Cinemas 15 July

3 Responses

  1. shanE

    looks like an alright movie – great scenery, but my goodness joel’s acting seems bad!

  2. Sebastian

    Actually I think that Joel really shines in the film and it is definitely one to enjoy on the big screen.

  3. jules

    the trailer looks pretty good – i’m keen to go check it out.

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