Waitress (2007) ***


A pretty looking woman stuck with an abusive husband, dealing with an unwanted pregnancy and having an affair with her doctor. Doesn't sound interesting at all but that is where Waitress surprises you, The movie is very real. It is not outlandish but still remain entertaining. The movie starts off from the point in life of Jenna (Keri Russell ), a pie baking waitress who finds out that she is pregnant with her husband’s baby. This throws off her plan of running away from her husband, Earl (Jeremy Sisto). Jenna’s world is full of pies. There is always a pie for every occasion. ‘I don’t wanna have Earl’s babay’ pie. ‘Bad baby’ pie. ‘I hate my husband’ pie. And each one of these have a special wonderful flavour. Jenna’s life gets even more complicated when she starts having an affair with her married doctor out of pure impulse. She doesn’t see it going anywhere and certainly doesn’t see him rescuing her from her horrible husband but she still continues. All the while she keeps growing bigger, detesting the baby for complicating her already ruined life. She doesn’t feel any love for her unborn foetes but that doesn’t make her bad in the audience’s eyes. The movie traces the eight months of her life till the time she becomes a mom and how the baby actually gives her the strength to stand up to her husband and change her life.

The movie could have easily turned into a ‘sleeping with an enemy’ or an ‘enough’ but steers away from all of that, instead giving us a light gentle drama. A feel good movie about struggles in the life and the special place you have to find peace and beauty. And it works largely because of Jenna’s attitude towards her pregnancy. While she doesn’t even considers abortion and does everything to keep the baby healthy, she nonetheless doesn’t feel anything about it. She just takes it to be another miserable turn in her miserable life. The letters she writes to her unborn child are hilarious. ‘Dear baby, when you ask me how I got you your crib, I’ll tell you that the money that was going to help me start my life went into the damn crib for my damn baby.’ The letters are extremely truthful and sarcastic and makes Amy real for us. She is no Mother Teresa but that doesn’t make her bad.

Keri Russell gives a great performance as Amy. She is beautiful, confused, funny and sad at the same time. All the other characters are apt too and help to bring this story to life. The dialogues are sharp and witty, keeping the tone of the movie light, given the really sad context. But the movie belongs to the director. Adrienne Shelly (who is now dead) creates this world which though full of sadness, comes to life when Jenna puts ingredients together in a bowl, making us forget about everything else. A person’s mind indeed is the most beautiful place on the planet.

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