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    The Carriers Are Waiting

    Latch-key kids

    An obsessed newspaperman may be a lousy dad but he can still force his kid to redeem him as a father by breaking the world door-opening record in the wickedly funny "The Carriers Are Waiting."


    Roger is the kind of dad who wants to make up for his own mediocrity by forcing his son to be the football hero he never was — you know the type. Oh, except this is Belgium and they don't play football.

    Original title: Les Convoyeurs Attendent.
    Directed by: Benoit Mariage.
    Written by: Emmanuelle Bada, Benoit Mariage, Jean-Luc Seigle.
    Cast: Benoit Poelvoorde, Morgane Simon, Bouli Lanners, Dominique Baeyens, Philippe Grand'Henry, Jean-Francois Devigne, Lisa LaCroix.
    Cinematography: Philippe Guilbert.
    In French with English subtitles.
    So pops looks around for some area he can force his son to achieve greatness in, and finally finds one: door opening. The world record for opening a door, going through and closing it is 30,000-plus, which, with some quick calculation based on a 30-second trial, he decides will be easy to beat. And when dad sets his mind on the goal, there's nothing his ungrateful little brat can't do. Right?

    So begins "The Carriers Are Waiting," a deliciously twisted little comedy from Belgium, the home, it should be pointed out, of the Mannequin Pis, fruit beer, the roadside french fry stand and the guy who threw a pie in Bill Gates' face for being too pompous.

    The small, French-speaking town where the film takes place is full of slightly demented characters, but none to rival Roger, played by Benoit Poelvoorde, who also starred in the disturbing "Man Bites Dog" ("C'est Arrive Pres de Chez Vous"). If his family seems a bit dysfunctional, it's probably because he runs the local newspaper, L'Espoir ("Hope"), and he frequently drops whatever he's doing at home to speed to an accident or crime scene and gleefully take some unthinkably crass photos for the next edition. Rarely has man's capacity for badness been captured in such an ordinary-guy character.

    MARCH 25, 2000

    Reader comments on The Carriers Are Waiting:

  • The carriers are waiting   from Eric Glanger, Dec 12, 2003

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