In the opening excerpt from this brooding drama, prison escapees Belmont (David Perrett) and the menacing Ramsay (Dane Giraud) journey on foot across the misty landscapes of the central North Island to a dilapidated psychiatric hospital. Belmont sneaks into a house to call his wife and organise a time for her to collect them. The Waiting Place was the only Kiwi digital feature chosen for the 2001 NZ International Film Festival. It won an NZ Film Award for Best Digitally Mastered Feature, in the days when digital films had just been given their own category. Actor Giraud co-wrote the script with director Pablo Araus, and Perrett.
The festival was inundated with New Zealand digital features this year. Most cheerfully exploit the new technology to essentially frivolous ends with wildly hit-and-miss results. This grim tale from the fabled dark heartland of the New Zealand psyche was not at all typical. It reveals an authentically cinematic imagination at work, extending what, for better or worse, is a solid local tradition.– NZ Film Festival director Bill Gosden, in the 2001 Wellington Film Festival programme, page 142