6.2/10
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Waffle Street (2015)

Unrated | | Comedy, Drama | 15 March 2016 (USA)
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Waffle Street's riches-to-rags tale is an adaptation of James Adams' 2010 memoir of the same name (published by Sourced Media Books), which chronicles the financier's foray into the food ... See full summary »

Directors:

Eshom Nelms, Ian Nelms
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3 wins. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
James Lafferty ... James Adams
Danny Glover ... Edward Collins
Julie Gonzalo ... Becky Adams
Dale Dickey ... Crazy Kathy
Marshall Bell ... Miles Drake III
Ernie Lively ... Wright Adams
William Frederick Knight ... Grandpop Adams (as William Knight)
Adam Johnson ... Matthew Linslow
Yolanda Wood ... Jacqui White
Aubrey Reynolds ... Mary Crohns
Sila Agavale Sila Agavale ... Manuel Lopez
Jason Tatom Jason Tatom ... Larry Cobble (as Jason Tatom)
Michelle Lang ... Nancy Linslow
Michael Flynn ... Repo Man
Ilene Wood Ilene Wood ... Ann Adams
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Storyline

Waffle Street's riches-to-rags tale is an adaptation of James Adams' 2010 memoir of the same name (published by Sourced Media Books), which chronicles the financier's foray into the food industry. After being laid off at the hedge fund where he worked, and further jaded by his culpability in the crisis, Adams chose to work at a popular 24-hour diner where he claims "most of his financial knowledge has been gleaned." Offering a fresh take on the fallout of corporate greed, Adams' is a tale of the redemption and unlikely friendship found under the tutelage of Glover's character Edward, the best short-order cook in town. Written by Autumn McAlpin

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

official facebook | Official site

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

15 March 2016 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A Waffle Street farkasa See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

Color
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Much of the movie was filmed in a diner in Lehi, Utah called "One Man Band". See more »

Goofs

When the lead character is driving towards the garage, the car is actually turned off. You can clearly see the meters of the mph and rpm standing at zero whilst driving. See more »

Quotes

James Adams: What we do is legal, therefore it is not unethical. If this was unethical, it would be illegal.
See more »

Soundtracks

DON'T LET THE LACK OF POLISH FOOL YA
Written by Peter Donovan
Performed by The Silent Cals
See more »

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User Reviews

 
A bankrupt story about redemption
15 March 2016 | by eladale-90211See all my reviews

The story is about greed, loss, and redemption. And that should strike a positive chord in many of us. But this film took a wrong turn from the beginning, as the greedy simply chewed up and spit out one of their own, James Adams, and apparently went on it's merry way. Seeing their fall guy lose a few of his expensive assets didn't garner sympathy from me. It should have brought about cheers from working class folks.....the ones who lost the most in the mortgage schemes exemplified in the opening scenes of the movie.

Instead, when he lands in the middle of a Waffle House rip-off on Main Street, America, they welcome the fallen Adams into their midsts. And the working men and women he meets fit a neat paint-by-numbers stereotype of "We are po', but we are happy". It seems the only person suffering more than a squabble with their wife is our protagonist. He is suffering through a scheme to finance another big deal that could save his way of life. How awful for him.

I took this movie as an excuse for greed. I saw it as a marginalization of working America. Adams' fall was a tiny bit of comeuppance for a small player in a system that stole a massive amount of wealth from the world and got away with it. I am happy for Mr. Adams' real life turnaround and redemption. We are all entitled to redemption. But I am angered by the financial fiasco that was...and still is. I was annoyed at the treatment of working class folks. The film did manage to pull together a relatively cohesive story with nothing more than an endless string of clichés. That takes some skill. And that is why I gave this movie more than a 1.

We are introduced to the main protagonist, James Adams, as a driven, focused man. Every attempt is made to portray him as afflicted with some Aspergers-like, Autistic Spectrum disorder. He is focused. He is blank. He responds inappropriately to social cues. And in that, he is well suited to his original corporate role of legally conning people into bad mortgage investments. These affectations may have been offered up as a reason or excuse for what he did in the financial world, but they do little to bring him to life or to win our hearts as the story goes forward.

The character of Becky Adams, his wife, is portrayed as a spoiled, narcissistic and selfish woman who only seems to offer up real emotions when threatened with losing something she wants. She is also a very unsympathetic character.

It is very difficult to feel their loss. More to the point, I found myself resenting them in their entitlement.

As we go forward, we meet a short list of empty and false characterizations. From businessmen to Realtors to buyers.....the movie failed to miss one stereotypical portrayal. And I am dismayed about the smiling, happy portrayals of cooks, waitresses, and ex-cons. The film's denial of the reality of working class issues shows that it is still rooted in the culture of wealth and greed and the American dream....for those who are privileged enough to still find it.

Danny Glover's portrayal of grill man, Edward Collins was workmanlike, but the character was bogged down with too many tired clichés. Glover tried, but the character was unsalvageable.

The bright spot in the whole movie was Crazy Kathy, portrayed by Dale Dickey. Seemingly outrageous, Crazy Kathy was the most real, most human of them all. But credit also has to go to Adam Johnson for a fine acting job playing the manager, Mathew Linslow. He was very believable and added a hint of humor.....something the film really needed.

We all know adversity and we all hope we can emerge from it as better people. The enlightenment that is found at the end of some personal trial is only a small part of the story. It's the journey that makes up the substance of the tale. That is the meat on the bones. The journey of self discovery lends credibility and validates the big payoff at the end.

This is where Waffle Street fails. Redemption comes. But it's built on a foundation of characterizations that I can only describe as empty, derogatory, and in many cases, insulting. It was as if the "manual on racial and social stereotypes" was used by the writers. The last third of the movie tries to breathe a little depth into a few of the characters, but was too little....too late. This film lost me early on. It never got me back.


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