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Artisan Home Entertainment presents
I've Been Waiting for You (1998)

"Because my name is Sarah and I fit their witch profile?"
- Sarah Zoltanne (Sarah Chalke)

Review By: Jesse Shanks   
Published: September 24, 2003

Stars: Sarah Chalke, Soleil Moon Frye, Markie Post
Other Stars: Ben Foster, Ted Dugan, Christian Campbell, Maggie Lawson
Director: Christopher Leitch

MPAA Rating: PG-13 for Some Violence and Terror
Run Time: 01h:28m:45s
Release Date: August 19, 2003
UPC: 012236143178
Genre: horror


Style
Grade
Substance
Grade
Image Transfer
Grade
Audio Transfer
Grade
Extras
Grade
B- C+B+B+ D

DVD Review

"Salem got all the press, but we had a witch of our own," Charlie (Ben Foster) tells Sarah (Sarah Chalke) as he relates the tale of the original Sarah, a witch who was burned at the stake some three hundred and fifty years ago. Since that time, it has been predicted that the original Sarah would return and wreak her revenge on the town. When things begin to occur that make it seem that this is indeed what is happening, things get a little crazy in Pinecrest.

I've Been Waiting for You is a very professional piece of mystery/horror filmmaking and the result is acceptable if lightweight entertainment. The editing is crisp, the sets are nicely done and the storyline does not lag. This is an excellent rental for younger teenagers; although there are some moments that are tense, overall the film is lighthearted in its storytelling. Even though it purports to be a "teen slasher" movie, there is very little violence or death. Most of the emphasis is on the occultish overlay of an alienated California girl attempting to blend into a smalltown Massachusetts community. Some of the "action" borders on parody of the genre, but never sinks all the way to the Scary Movie level. Some aspects are predictable, but the script does a decent job of maintaining a reasonable amount of suspense.

The film is based on a novel by Lois Duncan called Gallows Hill, who also wrote the books that the very successful I Know What You Did Last Summer series of films is based on. Screenwriter Duane Poole got his start with the Scooby Doo television series. His efforts are indicative of the solid professionalism of the crew on this film, including director Christopher Leitch.

Star Sarah Chalke has gone on to a measure of television stardom as Dr. Elliot Reid on the popular NBC comedy, Scrubs. She was the actress who temporarily took the role of the oldest daughter on Roseanne when Alicia Goranson quite the show to go to college. Here, Sarah's Sarah Zoltanne has a dry wit and intelligence as she struggles with the fact that she might be the reincarnation of a witch that might be returning to kill the descendants of the people who killed her. Being "different," Sarah is thrust into a complicated series of events resulting from the fear of the witch's return.

Soleil Moon Frye has the role of Kyra, the antagonist of Chalke's Sarah, who leads a band of "the right kids," all descendants of the killers of the first Sarah. Frye began acting at age 2 and was television's Punky Brewster in the live action show and an animated series. That character has imprinted itself on popular culture and Frye has attempted to continue her career and avoid the child actor syndrome. There is no doubt that the presence of two veterans like Frye and Chalke has a good influence on the cast as a whole. The film is very earnestly and competently acted by this young cast of hopefuls.

Another television veteran here is Markie Post, who has acted in such series as The Fall Guy, Night Court and Hearts Afire. Obviously, her appearance in I've Been Waiting for You is a typical turn as the name for the movie. Perhaps in seeking financing, attaching a familiar figure to the cast would be helpful. She has a few scenes early on in the setup but she and her schoolteacher beau (Tom Dugan) quickly move to the background and the younger cast take over.

All in all, a nice little spooky film that is low on gross out and high on charm. Not a bad disc to have on the shelf when Halloween rolls around.

Rating for Style: B-
Rating for Substance: C+

 

Image Transfer

 One
Aspect Ratio1.33:1 - Full Frame
Original Aspect Ratioyes
Anamorphicno


Image Transfer Review: Very typical TV movie transfer here in full frame. There is a little blurriness, but overall the picture is colorful and detailed. Nothing remarkable, but watchable.

Image Transfer Grade: B+

 

Audio Transfer

 LanguageRemote Access
DS 2.0Englishno


Audio Transfer Review: Perfectly sufficient quality in the Dolby 2.0 sound transfer for I've Been Waiting for You. The creaks, groans, and knockings that are part and parcel of the genre are skillfully placed in the sound spectrum. No hiss or intelligibility in the dialogue to be heard.

Audio Transfer Grade: B+

 

Disc Extras

Static menu
Scene Access with 18 cues and remote access
Packaging: Amaray
1 Disc
1-Sided disc(s)
Layers: single

Extras Review: No extras to be had, so you might find this one in the cutout been for a "nice price."

Extras Grade: D

 

Final Comments

I've Been Waiting for You is a charming little teen fright fest starring Sarah Chalke and Soleil Moon Frye. A competently made film that will get a few chuckles and raise a few hairs on the back of your neck.

 


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