Generally favorable reviews - based on 25 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 15 out of 25
  2. Negative: 1 out of 25

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Critic Reviews

  1. 60
    Though far from expert filmmaking - visual clich├ęs fly thick and fast - the movie has a swooning feel for the stark beauty of the African kingdom in which it was shot.
  2. An overdeveloped coming-of-age potboiler.
  3. 58
    As in so many films directed by actors, there's a generosity shown to performance that results in many lifelike moments.
  4. 50
    As coming of age stories go, Wah-Wah does little to distinguish itself.
  5. 50
    That the film is semi- autobiographical for caustic actor-turned-writer-director Richard E. Grant helps explain its severely, sometimes laughably bitter tone.
  6. To label the parents in Wah-Wah dysfunctional doesn't adequately describe their wildly inappropriate behavior.
  7. About as gripping as its title.
  8. There isn't enough heft to the story to pull everything together. Watching it is like trying to assemble a puzzle that's missing pieces.
  9. This is a hokey, old-fashioned melodrama in which the actors scream more often than necessary.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 8 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 4 out of 5
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 5
  3. Negative: 1 out of 5
  1. ChadS.
    Mar 29, 2007
    Lauren(Miranda Richardson) wants to leave Swaziland because she's bored with life in the outback. Only incidentially does this British Lauren(Miranda Richardson) wants to leave Swaziland because she's bored with life in the outback. Only incidentially does this British subject, this conscienceless woman of privilege, give something back to her adopted homeland. Lauren's gift is that she gets lost, if only for a little while. Her disdain for Africa seems so manifest, plot contrivance can be the only explanation for her return. "Wah Wah" is a film about people shut-off from the bigger picture. Through their eyes, Swaziland is simply home, and not the spoils that colonization entails. Even a nice American woman(or is she an "Ugly American" with manners) like Ruby(Emily Watson), who probably should know better(she lived through the Civil Rights Movement), never acknowledges her role of being an unwanted interloper. "Wah Wah" documents the end of British rule in the African colony, and thankfully, its subjects never express any remorse for their occupation. It would've felt tacked on, dishonest; because "Wah Wah" is about people whose arrogance has such a practiced sheen and polish, they turned their hubris into class. Their time in Swaziland may have been "Camelot" to them, but to the indigenous people, natives who Ralph(Nicholas Hoult) refers to as the subject of a National Geographic shoot, they probably suppressed the instinct to "kill a lot" behind their obedient, pacific faces when called upon to perform for their colonizers. Full Review »
  2. JonoN.
    Mar 12, 2007
    Delightful, engrossing and thorougly entertaining.
  3. RobertI.
    Feb 26, 2007
    Touches you emotionally in a way that an old-fashioned film can do: Swaziland becomes a metaphor for global change in the lives of strong characters.