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Waiting to Exhale (1995)

R  |   |  Comedy, Drama, Romance  |  22 December 1995 (USA)
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Ratings: 5.6/10 from 7,011 users  
Reviews: 47 user | 27 critic

Based on Terry McMillan's novel, this film follows four very different African-American women and their relationships with the male gender.



(novel), (screenplay), 1 more credit »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Onika Harris
Brandon Hammond ...


This story based on the best selling novel by Terry McMillan follows the lives of four African-American women as they try to deal with their very lives. Friendship becomes the strongest bond between these women as men, careers, and families take them in different directions. Often light-hearted this movie speaks about some of the problems and struggles the modern women face in today's world. Written by David Adrine <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Friends are the people who let you be yourself... and never let you forget it.


Comedy | Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

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




Release Date:

22 December 1995 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

4 Mulheres Apaixonadas  »

Box Office


$16,000,000 (estimated)


£1,240,401 (UK) (23 February 1996)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Director Forest Whitaker was the unanimous first choice of the film's producers and screenwriters. See more »


When Bernie meets James Wheeler in the hotel bar, his hands keep changing their position on the bar between shots. See more »


Bernadine Harris: I give you 11 fucking years of my life and you're telling me you're leaving me for a white woman?
John Harris, Sr.: Would it help if she was black?
Bernadine Harris: No. It would help if you were black.
See more »


Referenced in Will & Grace: My Uncle the Car (2001) See more »


And I Gave My Love To You
Performed by Sonja Marie (Featuring Patrice Rushen on acoustic piano)
Written by Kenneth 'Babyface' Edmonds (as Babyface) and Sonja Marie
Produced by Kenneth 'Babyface' Edmonds (as Babyface) for Ecaf Productions
Sonja Marie appears courtesy of LaFace Records
See more »

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User Reviews

21 September 2004 | by (Vancouver) – See all my reviews

I got an opportunity to see Waiting To Exhale for the second time recently, the first time shortly after it came out, and now now. I can't say time has improved my thoughts of the film, which is odd, as I seemed to recall really enjoying this the first time it came out. (Maybe I should watch 'Homeward Bound' again, as I LOVED that movie the first time I saw it) The only actress really to impress in this movie is of course the amazing Angela Bassett who growls and hisses every chance she gets! I really liked this character, and I felt for the trials she was going through. The other character I liked was the one played by Loretta Devine, who was cute as the overweight mother who unexpectedly falls in love. I kind of thought the Lela Rachon character was underwritten, and seemed to almost revel in her wantonness. lol. As for Miss Houston, when I was watching her "act", well, Chesty Morgan's performance in "Deadly Weapons" came to mind for some odd reason, as it appears the acting thing was becoming a struggle, and wasn't going to last for too long.. All in all, I wasn't really disappointed in the film, it just slid off...

4 of 7 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Portrayal of white women emily052786
WTH is up with Bernie's character? IcedChai3
Why did Robin + Michael break up? AMBROSIA992
The black man, white woman, thing is over done !!! afro_747
5.0? WTF! perennial08
The letter Bernie reads towards the end. dashboardfan249
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