It has been quite a while since my last review here. While I started off the new year strong, I am sad to say that my last post was over a month ago. I’m not sure if this one will kick me back into review overdrive, but at least it’s a step in the right direction. So, after weeks of intention, let me stall no further as I dive into F.C. Rabbath’s 2020 film, The Waiting.
Eager to turn his life around after a recent break-up and countless failed dates, Eric (Nick Leali, A Brilliant Monster) can’t wait to start his new job at a local hotel, The Lodge. Excitement quickly turns to intrigue, however, as Eric learns that one of the hotel’s rooms is haunted.
Back in January, I was emailed by a filmmaker by the name of F.C. Rabbath asking if I would be interested in reviewing his latest film. After giving the trailer a watch, I agreed and had every intention of checking the film out within a few days. Unfortunately, one thing led to another and here we are two months later. Was this supernatural flick worth the wait (no pun intended)? I think the answer is yes…
Within the first few minutes of pressing play, it is easy to see that The Waiting is quite a few steps ahead of most of the other indie horror films that I am used to. The budget for the project may not have been the largest, but you could have fooled me. Early on, we are presented with some beautiful establishing shots. The overall production value here is much better than I anticipated, even after watching the trailer like I did.
Additionally, within the first few seconds of meeting our main protagonist, I know I am in for a treat. Eric, played brilliantly by Nick Leali, is a bit of a rambler and while some may see this as annoying, it is quite easy to like him. He very clearly means no harm; he just happens to “not be good at talking,” as he, himself, states later on.
When Eric finds out about the local legend of the girl who is haunting room 101, he takes it upon himself to seize the opportunity to prove to his new co-workers and, more importantly, himself, that he is competent and willing to do what it takes to move along the ‘executive track.’
He is quickly met with the terrifying ghoul who has haunted this room for decades. With each subsequent visit, however, he realizes that Elizabeth isn’t as threatening as everyone once thought.
As the film progresses, Eric begins to communicate with his new found fiend… err, friend… learning just what she is after. He tries his best to bring her closure with their relationship blossoming further from there.
The Waiting is not your average ghost story. Sure, there is some spooky stuff here, but it really plays out more like a comedic drama full of hopeless romantics. While I did not quite expect this concoction of genres, it isn’t necessarily a bad thing.
If you took the haunted hotel parts of Ti West’s Innkeepers and mixed it with the romance elements from Justin Benson and Aaron Moorhead’s Spring, you might come close to The Waiting. Even with these various similarities, however, this film is still effective at separating itself from the pack.
I did find myself looking at my watch from time to time because some of the scenes seemed to crawl by, but overall, I enjoyed my experience with The Waiting.
F.C. Rabbath has done a nice job of bringing something new to not only the horror genre, but to multiple sub-genres as well. His combination of comedy, romance, and the supernatural make for a film that is certainly worth your time at least once through. The hour and 24 minute runtime does feel a bit sluggish at times, but if you stay invested, it will all pay off.
I can’t rightfully recommend this one to hardcore horror fans looking for blood and guts, but if you want something different from your horror, then The Waiting is one you’ll want to see. It has great acting, beautiful cinematography, and a really sweet ending that I won’t soon forget, tough guy horror fiend or not.
I am not sure if there are plans just yet for a wide release of the film, but if you get a chance to hunt it down for yourself, definitely give it a watch.
My final rating for F.C. Rabbath’s The Waiting is 3 hilarious blind dates out of 5.