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The Waiting Room

HD   Unrated Closed Captioning

Peter Nicks

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About the Movie

The Waiting Room is a riveting look behind the doors of a public hospital's overtaxed emergency room in Oakland, California. A poignant blend of humor and drama, the film offers a raw, intimate and ultimately uplifting look at the struggle and determination of one community and one hospital coping with limited resources and no road map for navigating a health care landscape marked by historic economic and political dysfunction. The Waiting Room is an eloquent and urgent anthem of the power of our collective humanity to meet the greatest challenges of our times.

Rotten Tomatoes Movie Reviews


  • Reviews Counted: 34
  • Fresh: 34
  • Rotten: 0
  • Average Rating: 8.5/10

Top Critics' Reviews

Fresh: By removing any editorial screen, it confronts you head-on with human suffering that a more humane and equitable system might help alleviate. – Stephen Holden, New York Times, Sep 26, 2012

Fresh: Nicks reports on what American public medicine looks like today. You decide if it's working or not. – Lisa Schwarzbaum, Entertainment Weekly, Oct 15, 2012

Fresh: A rock-solid verite docu. – Dennis Harvey, Variety, Oct 3, 2012

Fresh: A revealing portrait of the often tough transactions between patients and hospital staff at the urgency level. – Robert Abele, Los Angeles Times, Sep 27, 2012

Read More About This Movie On Rotten Tomatoes

Customer Reviews

Still think we have the best health care system in the world? Watch this film.

Every American should watch this movie. Do yourself a favor, turn off reality TV for two hours and get a taste of what health care looks like for a disturbingly large segment of our population. I’m a practicing MD and I trained in a county hospital that’s a carbon copy of the one depicted in the film. I suspect one can be found in every metro area around the nation. Our system is in shambles. This movie is a must see. No politics, no opinions, no commentary. Just a refreshingly unbiased picture of how utterly broken our system is. As you watch, ask yourself who is benefitting from the multi decade long financial boom in the health care sector of our economy. Record profits for insurers, medical device manufacturers, pharmaceutical companies, and private hospitals. Are these billions translating to better care for patients? Decide for yourself.

Wow, Great Perspective on American Healthcare

I love that the film leaves it for you to decide if things are working or not. The one thing that struck me is that in spite of the conditions, the frustrations - the people who work in this hospital actually care deeply about their patients.

The Waiting Room

An eye opener that educates. This film captured all the emotions felt in an emergency waiting room. Having visited the emergency room three times this past year with my father this film stirred up all the emotions I felt while I waited. An excellent film!

The Waiting Room
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  • $9.99
  • Genre: Documentary
  • Released: 2012

Customer Ratings