According to most, 'The Room' isn’t just a bad film: it’s the worst film ever made, and/but 99 minutes of non-stop laughter. This earned the film an Audience Award in New York, and it later turned a profit through the Midnight movie circuit while reaching cult status. And nearly 15 years later, it’s still playing regularly in theatres such as the Prince Charles Cinema in Leicester Square, in case you’ve missed it until now ('The Disaster Artist' actually begins with various film personalities-JJ Abrams included-talking about this phenomenon more than 10 years on).
Against Dave Franco’s self-conscious all American Greg, we have a classic comedic pair from the get go. But what keeps us involved in the story is something else. Franco’s commitment goes beyond walking around a film set directing his cast literally butt naked (except for some penis covering pouch. What was that?) then filming a bafflingly ridiculous sex scene during which he seems to be making love to his co-star’s navel. Franco also shows Tommy’s cracks. Ok, very bad timing. I DO NOT mean his butt crack. Well, that too (you’ll see…). But there are also the cracks that allow the light to get in, as Franco’s Tommy is also vulnerable, sensitive, dark, generous, childlike, tyrannical, exasperatingly stubborn.... It’s all there, making the character larger than life comedy gold, and yet completely 3-dimensional and believable. Even moving at times.
This fantastic balance between comedy and drama is also thanks to a great by Scott Neustadter & Michael H. Weber (who also penned '500 Days of Summer' and 'The Faults in Our Stars') and to Franco’s overall direction. (The only time the film lost me was early on due to a choice of guerrilla style camera movement that felt quite jarring, but it didn’t last very long at all.)
(PS: ...but if you work in the film industry, some of the antics taking place on set might remind you of that project you said "yes" to. You know, the one that still gives you nightmares…)
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