Monday, June 14, 2010

The Room

One of my guilty pleasures is watching films that are gloriously terrible. There's something about a film that fails on an epic scale--we're talking Xanadu or Roller Boogie here--that makes you drawn to it. And then there are the unintentional comedies that get more laughs from you than the best Mel Brooks farce. Friends, the 2003 film "The Room" is one of those films.

To get an idea of what I mean, check out this clip or this clip.

Basically, this film is the brainchild of actor/director/writer/producer/sociopath Tommy Wisseau (he's the guy with the rock star hair in those clips). He plays Johnny, a banker (despite having hair that belongs in an '80s hair metal band) who is "madly in love" with Lisa, who apparently has no redeeming qualities. She has fallen out of love with him and is cheating on him with his best friend Mark. How does the viewer know this? Because she basically tells everyone in the film, from her friends to her mother to the trolley car operator.

What makes the film miss on all cylinders is that nothing is put together right. At one point early in the film, Lisa's mother tells her that she just found out she has breast cancer. Despite the mother appearing in several more scenes, this issue is never brought up again. Same goes for one of the peripheral characters having a drug problem and owing money to a dangerous thug. For some odd reason the male characters are always tossing around a football, including in one scene where they're all wearing tuxedos. Why are they wearing tuxedos, you ask? Well the film certainly isn't going to tell you!

As you can also see from the clips above, the actors generally are off cue, as though they aren't really in the scene together. A typical line of dialogue is as follows:

"Did you get the promotion?"


"You didn't get the promotion, did you?"

In another scene, Mark asks Lisa why she has the candles and sexy music, even though there is no music or candles. And at some points, actors call each other by their real names rather than their character's name.

The film has actually developed a bit of a cult following, with people attending midnight screenings and Tommy Wiseau even stopping by for some of them--it has, ironically become a bit of a hit as it's quite hilarious to see the film miss so gloriously. I would highly recommend viewing it and trying not to laugh out loud at least once.

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