When Victoria Mapplebeck was diagnosed with breast cancer, she decided to record each step of her journey from diagnosis to recovery. Shot on an iPhone X, Victoria filmed her time in waiting rooms, surgery and chemotherapy. The Waiting Room is an unflinching portrait of the blood, sweat and tears of cancer treatment. Victoria makes visible the often invisible parts of cancer treatment, the sickness, the fatigue, the tears and the hair loss. At home she filmed with her teenage son, as they came to terms with how single parent family life was transformed by a year of living with cancer.
Victoria documents cancer from a patient’s POV, exploring what we can and what we can’t control when our bodies fail us. We have made cancer our enemy, a dark force to be fought by a relentlessly upbeat attitude. The Waiting Room is the antidote to the ‘tyranny of positive thinking’. It challenges the cultural myths that surround this disease, putting under the microscope the language of illness.