It's the apparently simple story of Jenna, small town southern waitress, with a god given talent for creating original and delicious pies. Stuck in a horrible marriage with an idiot husband, Jenna's saving money so she can bolt - until she finds out she's pregnant. She falls into a hopeless intense affair with a married young doctor, played with customary charm and intelligence by TV's own Cary Grant, Nathan Fillion. That's about the whole story, the stakes keep getting raised higher as the doctor and the waitress carry on an increasingly steamy affair just as her belly gets bigger and her husband gets more demanding and abusive.
The pies are a terrific touch, because the recipes are thematically related to the beats of the story (i.e. I hate my husband pie, crushed lumpy oatmeal and sour cherries, etc.). The making of the pies is shot gorgeously and, amazingly this device never gets tired.
I forced myself to watch this, because on paper, it looks like a cliched, gratuitously offbeat comedy full of faux folksiness and bad southern accents. It's far better than that. Director Shelley and Cheryl Hines play her fellow waitresses with verve and spunk, and Jeremy Sisto as the abusive husband may be stupid, but he's an identifiable human being, not a cliched villain, who evokes our empathy, even as we are rooting for Jenna to get the hell out of the marriage.
On the DVD extras, the cast all rhapsodize about Shelley's having such a clear vision of what she wanted and how she was a control freak for every aspect of this production. That is palpably true, and it's a tragedy that she didn't get to make more films. See this one, you'll be happy.
Sometimes this film is haunting or charming, and other times, it's community theatre bad. I enjoyed it more than I didn't, but this is a film that I can very easily see polarizing audiences.
Hand on my Chest: Creative, amusing, and heartwarming are the words I thought of when the end credits were scrolling up
WAITRESS is the story of one woman trapped in a life from which she dreams of escape. Jenna's (Russell) secret ambition is to save enough money from her waitressing job to leave her overbearing and controlling husband(Sisto). Jenna is a sharp, sassy woman with a gift for making unusual pies whose recipes are inspired by the trials, tribulations and circumstances of her life. An unwanted pregnancy changes the course of events giving her an unexpected confidence via letters to her unborn baby.
Loved the story. Thought the movie was funny at times and sad at moments. Really felt for Keri Russell's character Jenna. You could feel her misery through the screen. Just wanted her to turn and beat the crap out of her husband. Jeremy Sisto did great playing the abusive ass of an husband. Wanted to smack him a few times myself. =)
It was great to see Keri Russell in a leading role, and she was amazing. Loved the southern accent. Thought Andy Griffith was great. Loved his character. Just a really cute movie about not wanting to settle and wanting to break free from a relationship that is toxic. Definitely would recommend this one.
Adrienne Shelly's small romantic drama was a nice surprise, although I can't say that I'll ever see 'Waitress' again. Shelly plays also part in the movie as the lead characters co-worker, Dawn. Those who read this review should know that Shelly was murdered after the film was completed... A tragic event, what else is there to be said.
Keri Russell plays Jenna, an unhappy waitress who is pregnant. She works at a pie diner and makes the most unbeliavable pie's. But she wants to get out of this life and start over...
'Waitress' is funny, touching and somewhat quirky. It's not your typical rom com with dramatic elements. It's different and much more pleasing than the Hollywood productions. This movie has heart.
Why did I watch this then? You'd think that I'm not the targeted audience, for sure but its got Nathan Fillion in it! One of my favourites and surely one of the most underrated actors of our time. Watch 'Firefly' series and 'Serenity' and you'll know what I'm talking about...
Andy Griffith ('Matlock') does a nice performance as the owner, Old Joe, of the diner. His dialogue, and his character, is the funniest of the bunch. Who wouldn't love an old geezer like that?
Good acting and a surprisingly good story. That's all you need to fulfill the needs of the little optimist and romanticist in you.
It is the loving memorial of actress-writer-director Adrienne Shelly (1966-2006) who made an amazing filmmaking in this movie.
Granted, it is a little green behind the ears, owing most likely to its director's inexperience. The tone is strange and it occasionally meanders a bit. But it's an inspiring anthem to anyone who has ever felt oppressed or hopeless, and a movie that is impossible to hate.