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Cult Classic or Cult Drinking Movie?: 'The Room' (2003)
Why Watch The Room?
Cult movies…. If you google the term, some movies come up time and time again. Most are generally good movies or have qualities that are good or actors that are good and so, over time - they create their own status, so to speak. Me personally I would rate Donnie Darko, Clerks (The Original not the sequel) and Dazed and Confused as among some that deserve the title. This movie, however, is up there in the vein of Sharknado (whatever I don’t care if it’s going on to make more and more sequels, it was awful and I hope to never have to sit through it again.)
The Room's main man is a guy called Tommy Wiseau! Wiseau, the man, is a bit of a mystery but if you need a reason to watch a movie that reached cult status for all the wrong reasons then perhaps this movie is for you.
Its director Tommy Wiseau; who stars in the flick as Johnny, is also the producer, the writer and owns the production company WISOH films and this little gem released in 2003.
Now that the new film The Disaster Artist has released, everyone's heard of him. This is a review I wrote before the he became trendy again.
Quick Movie Info
Whats It About?
Let me start by saying this movie has been labeled as “the worst movie ever made,” but I’ll give you the watered down short version.
The Room (not to be confused with another movie called Room which was excellent) centers around Johnny who’s a banker and Lisa his fiancé who are very, very in love. You can clearly see this love throughout the movie due to Wiseau’s prescription of an attempt at soft porn very early in the film and then continuing with many, many more love scenes afterward.
Then there’s Denny, Denny is a creepy little dude who is Johnny’s pretend surrogate son who is in some sort of jam with a guy called Chris R and it involves drugs. Denny is also into Lisa, however, this is a source of debate among the die-hard fans that like to talk about it. Sometimes I felt like Denny was really just into voyeurism and trying to include himself in a threesome with Johnny and Lisa. Denny’s character is sad when Lisa insists she just wants friendship.
Lisa is a bit of a hoe and decides to get it on with Johnny’s best mate Mark because she is a confused lass whose best friend is her mum. Lisa also thinks she deserves more than Johnny and his love and his money...isn't there more to life?
Of course, Johnny get suspicious and spies on Lisa and Mark using a tape recorder and so, of course, massive drama ensues in the love triangle that is Johnny, Lisa, and Mark.
Was I surprised at the ending, erm... No. Lots of things get left in the air which I hate and the story is full of massive football sized holes.
The Room Trailer
What the critics said when it was released
The Room is one movie among a list of many that never met its production budget when it hit the big screen but then over time, something about the film begins a Chinese whisper like effect and wham bam, thank you Wiseau, lots of people have seen it and somehow it becomes a sorta, kinda maybe hit.
This movie gets cited by many critics and publications with pearlas (Australian slang for ‘beauties’) such as; Wiseau’s speaking voice described as “Borat impersonating Christopher Walken” or another famously saying it was the “Citizen Kane of Bad Movies.”
The Room was even privately shown after it got pulled from theatres by a guy called Michael Rousselet (cofounder of 5secondfilms.com) who got together to laugh at it and throw spoons at the screen. (Like seriously, how fun would that be?)
Other celebrities became closet fans such as Dave Franco, Will Arnett, and Kristen Bell to name a few.
The Mystery That is Tommy Wiseau
Quite often, I found interviews with Wiseau and other video reviewers hilarious. People have put together clips of the movie and it had me laughing a lot more at the movie than I had originally anticipated. I can see why fans got together to simply poke fun, and not just that its making was a terrible mistake.
It's thought this movie is based somewhat on Mr. Wiseau's life. Maybe it is. My research into the man himself unearthed all sorts of weirdness. Even his age is under speculation. He's said to have told media during an interview that he was born in 1968 or 1969 making him 48-ish in the year 2017, however, another actor friend of his spoke out about his birth date being "earlier" than that - saying he was born in the 1950's. Seeing as he naturalised as a US citizen at age 29 in 1985 (making him 56 in 2017..it seems Tommy likes to think he is younger than he is. Who doesn't though?
Some of the things reported about him are:
- Working as a dishwasher as a young adult and calling himself Pierre.
- While living in a youth hostel he got arrested by mistake and then mistreated by the police.
- Moved to San Francisco and became a street vendor, adopting the name Birdman because he sold bird toys This is how he became Wiseau: it's derived from the French word for Bird Oiseau.
- He became rich by running a business called Street Fashions USA which sold irregular blue jeans at discounted prices.
- No one knows where the 6 million came from for the budget for The Room. Tommy once claimed during an interview that he made the money importing leather jacketsfrom Korea.
- Tommy loves James Dean so much that he took lines from some of his movies and put them in The Room.
What about the rest of the cast?
Well, I couldn't find anything noteworthy that any of them went on to and I think that's a little rare in a crappy movie that gained cult status, so you'll just have to watch it so that the other stuff about the movie becomes as enjoyable as I found it.
Now that I've seen it though, I'd love to attend one of the private screenings. Audience members rock up in wigs representing their favourite character, carry footballs and throw plastic cutlery at the screen while interacting with the on-screen jibber-jabber. Sounds like fun to me.
Would you watch it now that it could be something to make a drinking game out of?
Watch these guys reviewing The Room - hillarious
Is The Room as Crappy as Sharknado?
Is The Room as crappy as Sharknado? I’m not sure... but it’s definitely something I don’t want to sit through again unless I'm armed with spoons, some alcoholic beverages, and friends. I did however really like looking into the back story behind Wiseau, the fact there is a video game based on the movie and that some of the scenes within the ROOM (like the belly button love scene) made me laugh more than any comedy I have watched recently (I am talking about "How to be Single" OMG so not funny.) And yes I did all this researching on the net while watching the movie haha.
There is seriously a video game based on The Room
I rated this 1 Korean leather Jacket out of 5
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