Waiting for Forever stars Rachel Bilson (The O.C.) as Emma and Tom Sturridge as Will. The pair had been best friends in childhood and a tragic event that traumatized the young Will was only made a slightly more manageable hardship through some encouraging words from Emma. The kids eventually went separate ways and the story jumpstarts with Will as an adult in "love". Will is looking for Emma because he believes he is in love with her and he is determined and convinced that they are destined to be together forever. Some may find this ridiculously presented notion as romantic but in essence Will is a stalker who follows Emma around to whatever city she currently resides in. They haven't spoken in so many years that it feels a bit creepy (and though some may connect to the Will character as a harmless sap in love it is clear he suffers from some serious problems outside of mere romantic trouble).
This is an absolutely awful film from start to finish. It's not always easy to, well, so easily dismiss a film and to say that it's something unworthy of the time of others but this is a rare example of a mind-numbingly terrible effort that manages to bring only some rather small, occasional laughs - all resulting from the film's preposterous script and lukewarm direction and not at all related to the art and craft of fine filmmaking meant to provoke such reaction.
Perhaps the funniest unintentional humor in the film comes from the rather blatant rip-off material found within. This is a story that rather poorly attempts to copy many of the events and characteristics which are found on display in the classic romantic-comedy gem Benny & Joon (which, coincidentally, I also reviewed). The attempts at copying aspects from the film are so poorly veiled that it should insult anyone even remotely familiar with that Johnny Depp starring film favorite. This led to some awkward and irritated laughter and that was perhaps one of the finer elements of this film's lethargic experience. It managed to make me cringe in new ways. Tom Sturridge is no Johnny Deep and both screenwriter Steve Adams and Director James Keach don't seem to realize they can't recapture that kind of magic.
Several scenes in the film seem designed from a completely unbelievable perspective and the effect is feeling that nothing thrown at the screen is even remotely genuine. Bilson actually stands out as one of the only cast members who is genuinely trying to perform and help carry the film. I suppose that can be viewed as a strength considering she is a lead role, after all, but it is far from enough to make for a compelling or enjoyable experience considering all of the many faults the film displays.
While the film intends to pull on the heartstrings of the audience and to sweep everyone into a warm and fuzzy glow of a beautiful romantic story the film fails to evoke any true genuine emotions and isn't even remotely close to being a genuinely heartfelt experience. Romantic comedy fans who don't care about quality are the only audience members who might find something redeeming about Waiting for Forever. Most viewers (male or female) will be left scratching their heads while wondering how this film managed to have actors as talented as Richard Jenkins and Blythe Danner involved in the production in the first place (the pair performs the weirdly-scripted roles of Emma's parents) and perhaps how such a blatantly unoriginal and uninspired screenplay actually found its way into production at all.
Waiting for Forever is presented on Blu-ray in its original theatrical aspect ratio 1:85:1 in an AVC-encoded transfer that maintains an average bitrate of 25 MBPS. The 25 GB disc is large enough for the short 99 minute film to be preserved properly. The transfer is clean and sharp, with strong color reproduction (even with colors that are sometimes a bit muted depending upon the scene). This is a pleasant High Definition presentation: one that never wavers and is uniformly excellent. The cinematography and framing of the film prevent it from ever being a showstopper but for what it needs to be this transfer and release gets the job done in the video department nicely.
The 5.1 Surround Sound DTS-HD Master Audio track is pleasant and works well with the film's equally impressive transfer. Music benefits the most from the boost to high-resolution audio - though the actual songs featured throughout the film may leave something to be desired. The film isn't necessarily a sonic showcase and the surrounds are mainly used for some added ambiance and music reproduction but it sounds clean, clear, and the dialogue is prominent. English subtitles are included for the deaf and hard of hearing. Spanish subtitles are the only other language option included on this release.
No extras are present on this release whatsoever. Perhaps the film-makers didn't desire to discuss how much Benny & Joon "inspired" them.
Waiting for Forever is almost a chore of a movie to sit through. The only thing that makes it even remotely watchable is how preposterous and poorly made the entire film is (which adds comedic possibilities where none should be present). Rachel Bilson also delivers a decent performance is an otherwise indecent film. Unless you enjoy sappy romance films with no genuine emotion and truly weird endings that don't make any logical real-world sense (if one chooses to evaluate the events and characters in the film) this is something to just miss. Skip It.