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Waiting to Exhale

Waiting to Exhale

4.6 3
Director: Forest Whitaker

Cast: Whitney Houston, Angela Bassett, Loretta Devine


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Forest Whitaker's adaptation of Terry McMillan's Waiting to Exhale comes to DVD with a widescreen transfer that preserves the original theatrical aspect ratio of 1.85:1. Closed-captioned English soundtracks are rendered in both Dolby Digital 5.1 and Dolby Digital Surround, and a French soundtrack has also been recorded in Dolby Digital Surround. English and


Forest Whitaker's adaptation of Terry McMillan's Waiting to Exhale comes to DVD with a widescreen transfer that preserves the original theatrical aspect ratio of 1.85:1. Closed-captioned English soundtracks are rendered in both Dolby Digital 5.1 and Dolby Digital Surround, and a French soundtrack has also been recorded in Dolby Digital Surround. English and Spanish subtitles are accessible. Supplemental materials include the original theatrical trailer. The film looks and sounds great, although 20th Century Fox could have done more with the extras on this release.

Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Kryssa Schemmerling
Fastidiously adapted from Terry McMillan's bestselling, award-winning novel, Waiting to Exhale is the quintessential African-American "chick flick." It revolves around four reasonably well-to-do southwestern suburbanites (Whitney Houston, Angela Bassett, Loretta Devine, and Lela Rochon) afflicted with the same malady: an inexplicable inability to attract male partners willing to commit to long-term relationships. Exhale interweaves the stories of its quartet of protagonists as they unfold over a year's time. Pop diva Houston, not surprisingly, plays the film's most glamorous character, but her thesping is easily surpassed by that of Devine, whose earthy charm provides a welcome counterpoint to Whitney's theatricality. The meatiest role goes to Bassett, who displays considerable range under the direction of Forest Whitaker (Hope Floats). The male cast members, including Gregory Hines, Dennis Haysbert, Mykelti Williamson, and an unbilled Wesley Snipes, are equally effective, though not nearly as sympathetic. Whitaker disdains flashy narrative technique but painstakingly delineates his principal characters -- and makes us care about them. Attesting to the success of his approach was the subsequent appearance of several similarly themed imitations, none as popular (or as accomplished) as Waiting to Exhale.
Barnes & Noble - Ed Hulse
Squabbling sisters Vanessa L. Williams, Vivica A. Fox, and Nia Long supply dynamic performances to Soul Food, a heartwarming drama celebrating family values in the African-American community. At the film's emotional core is strong-willed Chicago matriarch Mother Joe (Irma P. Hall), whose extravagant Sunday dinners have been uniting family members for decades. But a long-simmering feud between oldest daughter Teri (Williams) and youngest daughter Bird (Long) flares up dramatically, threatening to split the clan apart. Then Mother Joe falls ill, and grandson Ahmad (Brandon Hammond) takes it upon himself to ease tensions by continuing the family tradition. First-time writer-director George Tillman Jr. juggles multiple subplots with admirable dexterity, and brings a wealth of keenly observed psychological detail to his characterizations of Mother Joe, the sisters, their respective spouses, and offspring. His facile manipulation of a multilayered story, coupled with the winning performances of a richly talented ensemble, makes Soul Food a particularly tasty dish. Tillman discusses the film in an audio commentary recorded for this Director's Edition DVD, which also includes a behind-the-scenes featurette and several music videos produced under the supervision of hip-hop impresario Kenneth "Babyface" Edmonds.
All Movie Guide - Michael Costello
Forrest Whitaker's film version of Terry McMillan's best-seller about the romantic woes of four African-American women is an entertaining soap opera. Each of these middle- to upper-middle-class women (Whitney Houston, Angela Bassett, Lela Rochon, and Loretta Devine) have reason to bewail the quality of men they've been involved with, and here they give vent to their anger. Whitaker's film gives these women plenty of room to stretch out, some might say too much. The film has some wonderful moments, such as Bassett burning her rich husband's clothes when he dumps her, and some hilarious riffs on their various boyfriends' sexual peccadillos, but there are also swatches of banality that could easily have been cut. None of the relationships of the women are probed in depth, and, appropriately, most of the male characters exist only to illustrate a point. Among the few exceptions is Gregory Hines, who has a nice turn as a laid-back handyman who hooks up with Devine. Despite their problems with men, the film is really a backhanded tribute to both the independence and sustaining friendship of these four women.

Product Details

Release Date:
Original Release:
20th Century Fox
Region Code:
[Wide Screen]
Sales rank:

Special Features

Closed Caption; Widescreen format (Aspect ratio: 1.85:1); Interactive menus; Scene selection; Original theatrical trailer ; Languages: English 5.1 surround; English Dolby® surround; French Dolby® surround; Subtitles: English; Spanish

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Whitney Houston Savannah Jackson
Angela Bassett Bernadine Harris
Loretta Devine Gloria Johnson
Lela Rochon Robin Stokes
Gregory Hines Marvin
Dennis Haysbert Kenneth
Mykelti Williamson Troy
Michael Beach John Sr.
Leon Russell
Wendell Pierce Michael
Donald Faison Tarik
Brandon Hammond John, Jr.
Lamont Johnson Joseph
Wren T. Brown Minister
Graham Galloway Fireman
Starletta DuPois Savannah's Mother
Ezra Swerdlow Wild Bill
Giancarlo Esposito Tarik's Father (uncredited)
Wesley Snipes James (uncredited)
Jeffrey D. Sams Lionel

Technical Credits
Forest Whitaker Director
Ronald Bass Executive Producer,Screenwriter
Jaki Brown-Karman Casting
Tim Chau Musical Direction/Supervision
Richard Chew Editor
Kenneth Edmonds Score Composer
Marc Fisichella Art Director
Michael Foxworthy Set Decoration/Design
Kirk R. Gardner Camera Operator
David Gropman Production Designer
Caron K Associate Producer,Asst. Director
Toyomichi Kurita Cinematographer
Terry McMillan Executive Producer,Screenwriter
Joseph Ray Asst. Director
Judy Ruskin Costumes/Costume Designer
Deborah Schindler Producer
Ezra Swerdlow Producer

Scene Index

Side #1 --
1. Main Titles [2:47]
2. New Year's Eve [6:22]
3. Blind Date [3:40]
4. Word About Bernie and John [3:01]
5. Burning Trash [3:52]
6. Michae and Robin [7:30]
7. A Drink with Bernie [2:10]
8. David's Surprise [6:49]
9. Meeting Adjourned [1:55]
10. Caught in the Act [3:44]
11. Girl's Night Out [2:39]
12. Troy's Bad Habits [3:30]
13. Invitation to a Barbecue [1:46]
14. Russell Reappears [2:25]
15. Cutting Troy Loose [4:05]
16. Gloria's New Neighbor [:03]
17. James Wheeler [3:15]
18. Kenneth Comes Calling [5:49]
19. Sharing the Pain [6:27]
20. Gloria's Birthday [4:31]
21. Cautious About Kenneth [4:44]
22. Waiting on Russell [7:22]
23. Trust in the Lord [5:48]
24. Letter of Inspiration [2:11]
25. Savannah's Strength [3:36]
26. Closure [3:24]
27. Happy New Year [6:24]
28. End Credits [6:35]


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Waiting to Exhale 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Love the movie really felt what a black women goes through!
Guest More than 1 year ago
"Waiting To Exhale" is by far the best movie that women and men can relate to on relationships, friendships, and our instincts about life. Overall, outstanding material that we as black folks like to see.
RockieinLA More than 1 year ago
A story of four 'best girlfriends' living through what proves to be a life-changing year for all of them. This is a story EVERY woman can identify with. Who among us has never wanted to throw our Ex's things out into the street? Or find the courage to throw a drink in our guy's face? Or have one more romp with that Ex we never quite forgot? It's a story of their relationships: with their partners, good and bad, past and present; with themselves, now and then, before and after; but especially with their girlfriends who, for better or for worse, will always be there and will always tell them the truth, even when they don't want to hear it.