Have you ever seen the 2003 movie The Room, directed, produced, written and starring Tommy Wiseau? No? Don’t worry because you aren’t the only one. Released in 2003 in only one theater and only grossing $1,800, The Room is largely considered the best worst movie ever made and has since become an infamous cult classic with continuous midnight screenings in select cities.
The man behind the film was a mysterious figure all his own with his unknown age, unlimited amounts of money, his hard to understand Eastern European accent (though he claimed to be from New Orleans) and an imagination that made a film so unbelievably bad that it transpired into a good feature. Who knew a movie about its makings and origins would be so fantastically wonderful?
Directed by James Franco and starring both himself and his younger brother, Dave Franco, The Disaster Artist is based on the book by the same name. It is about the making of the cult film and about the mystery of the man himself. Tommy Wiseau moved to Los Angeles in the late 1990’s to make it big as an actor, though his personality and life prior to Hollywood seemed more suited to star in a film than his skills as an actor.
James Franco is both the scene stealer and the movie backdrop with his incredibly spot-on portrayal of Wiseau. It is so spectacular, it’s hard to believe that underneath that black hair, cloudy blue contact lenses and the most bizarre accent I’ve never heard is the handsome James Franco. In a film all about following your dreams no matter what anyone else tells you, the Franco’s work together to capture the awkward feeling of putting yourself out there and the terrorizing realization that the future never happens the way you want. The pain, the thrill, the addictive feeling that can only be called hope is what one feels when given a glimpse of what they can have when they follow their dreams. Of course, it’s never as smooth as anyone thinks and there is always some kind of heartbreak.
The Disaster Artist has all that, plus two Franco’s and one Rogen that is a tribute sweeter than any other. Wiseau’s ignorant, almost innocent behavior, is both charming and irritating at once. At times the audience will think “I wish I had a friend like him.” Then the scene changes and they’ll think “thank God I don’t know him” because he is a never-ending, unpredictable train wreck of a thousand fish-hooked emotions, secrets, and dispositions that is impossible to look away from.
It’s clear that they had fun making this flick and that they both love and admire the subject material. Made for anyone who loves the cinema, and The Room, or anything strangely wonderful. Unique is the best word for it and I can honestly say every second was a joy to watch.
The comedy was unlike other comedies because there were no jokes outside of Tommy Wiseau doing something weird and others reacting to it. The real question is: is he weird or does he have the right idea? Follow your dreams because even if the result is a cringing stomach twisting creation, you can say that you followed your dreams. How many people can say that?
Highly recommended, but not for action fans or anyone who will be waiting for some mind-blowing fight sequence to happen. A funny, inspiring film that might make some feel the urge to move to Los Angeles to become a star immediately, despite the lack of money in their wallet.