6.9/10
2,701
50 user 47 critic

Wah-Wah (2005)

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, ... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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...
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Gwen Traherne
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Lauren Compton
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Lady Riva Hardwick
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June Broughton
John Matshikiza ...
Dr. Zim Mzimba
Sid Mitchell ...
Vernon
John Carlisle ...
Sir Gifford Hardwick
Mathokoza Sibiya ...
Dozen
Sindisiswe Nxumalo ...
Regina
Michael Richard ...
Tobias
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Storyline

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 Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Every family has its own language.

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some language and brief sexuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

| |

Language:

Release Date:

2 June 2006 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

A Conquista da Liberdade  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office

Budget:

$7,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$55,304 (USA) (12 May 2006)

Gross:

$233,103 (USA) (23 June 2006)
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Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

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Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Opened the Edinburgh Film Festival in August 2005, then had a special screening at the Toronto Film Festival September 2005. See more »

Goofs

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 »

Quotes

Harry Compton: 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.
See more »

Connections

Features A Clockwork Orange (1971) See more »

Soundtracks

C'est Moi
from "Camelot"
Written by Alan Jay Lerner & Frederick Loewe
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Delightful, funny and very, very moving
17 August 2005 | by (Edinburgh, Scotland) – See all my reviews

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.


61 of 67 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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