Set at the end of the '60s, as Swaziland is about to receive independence from Great Britain, the film follows the young Ralph Compton, at 12, through his parents' traumatic separation, ...
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Marc is sitting in his bath one morning and asks his wife, "how would you feel if I shaved off my mustache?" She doesn't think it's a great idea, for the 15 years they've been married, ... See full summary »
Starting from childhood attempts at illustration, the protagonist pursues his true obsession to art school. But as he learns how the art world really works, he finds that he must adapt his vision to the reality that confronts him.
Set at the end of the '60s, as Swaziland is about to receive independence from Great Britain, the film follows the young Ralph Compton, at 12, through his parents' traumatic separation, till he's 14. It is written and directed by Richard E Grant, and based on true events from Richard E Grant's childhood. Written by
Opened the Edinburgh Film Festival in August 2005, then had a special screening at the Toronto Film Festival September 2005. See more »
When Ralph comforts Ruby at the hospital, her dress starts slipping from her right shoulder. When the camera takes a close shot, the dress is up to her neck. See more »
I suppose you think this is all so bloody easy. Well, wake up. Just you wait until you lose everything. And I mean everything. Wife, position, future. The whole damn kit and caboodle. Come independence, we're all on the scrapheap. So wake up.
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Richard E. Grant's mostly autobiographical film tells the story of a boy growing up in Swaziland amidst the end of British colonisation, his parents' harrowing divorce and his father's destructive alcoholism.
Before the film I was promised it would make me cry, laugh and be totally delighted with what I saw.
The tears come from some very moving moments between Ralph (Nicholas Hoult) and his father as they try to maintain a relationship despite his father's drinking problems, depicted by a very frightening and convincing Gabriel Byrne. Ralph's struggle to accept his father's new wife, played by Emily Watson, also gives us a good dose of emotional moments, of which this film is certainly not short!
The laughter comes mostly from some moments of brilliantly over-the-top British snobbery and Emily Watson's spot-on mockery of it. Incidentally, this is what gives the film its title - "Wah-Wah" being her imitation of upper class speech.
And the delightfulness comes from everything about the film - a sentimental and touching story set amongst beautiful scenery, with a lovely score and stunning performances from all the cast. Having spent 5 years on this film, it is clearly very personal to Grant and it seems all that time was worth it. The promise was fulfilled - delight, laughter and tears.
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