The Room (2003)
"The Room is a menagerie of conveniences, contrivances, and clichés. With ridiculous characters whose motivations change every few minutes, sets that look like they belong in a sixties episode of Doctor Who, and writing and dialogue SO bad that it makes crap like Transformers seem like Pulp Fiction in comparison. And you know what? It's fucking glorious!"— I Hate Everything
The Room is a 2003 independent romantic "comedy" drama directed, produced, and written by Tommy Wiseau, who also stars as the main character, Johnny, who struggling to get back at his fiancee, Lisa so that they can be married. Of course, Wiseau claimed that the flaws were intentional and the movie was a black comedy but fans knew it was a poorly-made drama, which was actually confirmed by the cast and crew members. It is often described as "so bad, it's good" and sometimes the "best worst movie of all time".
Johnny is a successful banker who lives happily in a San Francisco townhouse with his fiancée, Lisa. One day, inexplicably, she gets bored with him and decides to seduce his best friend, Mark. From there, nothing will be the same again.
Why It Sucks
- Orginally, Tommy Wiseau wrote The Room as a play, 2 years ago and then tried to adapt it into a 500-page book, which was unable to get published. Frustrated, Wiseau decided to adapt the work into a film with his creative control (including directing, producing, and written all by himself). Thus, it ended up being what it is when the film was released.
- A generic "romantic' storyline revolving around Johnny, Tommy Wiseau's character and a succesful banker, trying to get back at his fiancee, Lisa so that they can be married. However it doesn't happen at all and is just Lisa cheating on Johnny.
- Tommy Wiseau's acting is considered some of the worst acting ever performed, with no believability coming from him at all. This was due to him always looking bored and tired while speaking out weak lines as well as his indescribable accent.
- The film has multiple subplots that are left completely unresolved by the end, such as Denny's drug problem and Claudette's breast cancer.
- There are numerous continuity errors within the film, most of which are incredibly noticeable.
- The tone is indeed inconsistent and tries to be like a comedy or something else.
- The dialogue is portrayed very blandly since the actors were all C-listers and inexperienced.
- Horribly paced and pointless scenes especially the talks between Lisa and her elderly mother, Claudette.
- The movie is extremely repetitive:
- Too many panoramic exterior shots of San Francisco.
- The sex scenes are obviously recycled and are poorly done with Johnny described as having sex with Lisa's belly button. Speaking of which, the sex scenes in this movie are hilariously bad thanks to the music and the choices made in them such as Mark and Lisa's stairway scene, or the mostly offscreen blowjob given to Mike complete with awkward expressions.
- Every time Lisa seduces Mark, he always has to ask what's going on.
- The script constantly re-uses the idea of a character saying that they need to go somewhere before the scene ends with a location shot.
- The viewers need to be frequently told how "beautiful" Lisa is.
- There is no character development whatsoever in the film and there are many useless characters who serve no purpose to the main narrative other than filler.
- False advertising: The poster and title give the impression that it's a horror movie when in reality, it's a romantic drama.
- Wiseau himself gave almost no direction to the cast in the film. When Juliette Danielle asked for direction, Wiseau told her to watch the movie Eyes Wide Shut, forcing her to wing it as a villainess.
- When Johnny says "you're just a chicken", he says "cheep! cheep! cheep! cheep!" instead of trying to say "bawk! bawk! bawk! bawk!", which is a lazy attempt for humorous jokes.
- Mark seemingly has the ability to teleport, as he randomly appears in some scenes.
- Most of the outdoor scenes use green-screen instead of actually filming it outside.
- Weird and bizarre moments.
- Johnny, Mark, Denny, and Peter playing football while wearing tuxedos. The players simply toss the ball back and forth from very short distances as if they don't know the rules.
- In a coffee shop, Johnny asks Mark about his sex life from out of nowhere.
- The legendary flower shop scene has Johnny reading his lines out of order, such that he is speaking one line ahead of the woman he's talking to. It is one of the most utterly surreal scenes ever put to film.
- There is a scene where Johnny shows his butt. (Tommy claimed "I have to show my ass or the movie won't sell.").
- In a very mundane climax, after Johnny trashed the apartment, he took a red dress and began making a disturbing simulation. This scene was supposed to show how torn up he was, but the bad script and the weak character interactions make it fail. It gets "better" when Johnny ends up shooting himself with a gun.
- When Mark and Lisa find Johnny dead, Mark tells him to wake up while Lisa asks with a fake emotion if he was dead, neither of them seems to notice a puddle of blood behind Johnny's head.
- Several out-of-nowhere exterior shots of San Francisco before cutting back to the same scene.
- Characters in this movie take shockingly bad news too lightly.
- When Lisa tells her mother that Johnny became drunk and hit her, she was shocked to hear that Johnny was drunk rather than being a domestic abuser.
- This film feels like a self-advertisement of Tommy Wiseau, as he only wanted people to see how great of a guy he was. The movie was also made due to Wiseau's frustration with not getting cast in any acting roles.
- Mladen Milicevic did a great job composing the score. One notable example is the main theme.
- Juliette Danielle and Dan Janjigian actually have convincing performances.
- It has a cult following of being a "so bad, it's good" vein and people may enjoy it.
- In fact, one of the lines, "I did not hit her. It's not true. It's bullshit! I did not hit her! I did not! Oh hi, Mark." is very memorable and will likely never get old, but later would spawn internet memes.
- There is a book about this film written by one of the film's cast members, Greg Sestero (who had acted prior to this film in Patch Adams as one of the guests at Carin's funeral; he plays Mark in this film) called The Disaster Artist: My Life Inside The Room, the Greatest Bad Movie Ever Made which explores the film's troubled history. It's a truly interesting one. Said book got a film adaptation in December 2017, starring James Franco as Wiseau and Dave Franco as Sestero which ironically was praised by critics and even received a nomination for "Best Adapted Screenplay" at the 90th Academy Awards.
- It received an unofficial video game adaptation by Newgrounds in September 2010, telling the plot of the movie from Johnny's point of view. The game also helps clean up a ton of plotholes, such as the absence of Peter from the film's final act.
- There is actually a website for it. http://www.theroommovie.com/
- The lines "I did not hit her. It's not true. It's bullshit! I did not hit her! I did not!... oh hi, Mark." and "YOU'RE TEARING ME APART, LISA!" became internet memes.
- Johnny's infamous "You are tearing me apart" line is actually a quote from 1955 James Dean teen movie Rebel Without a Cause.
- The movie was widely panned by many critics who criticized its overall poor quality, mentioning, in particular, the acting and the nonsensical writing. It received a 26% critic score on Rotten Tomatoes with an average critic rating of 2.9/10 with a critical consensus reads, "A bona fide classic of midnight cinema, Tommy Wiseau's misguided masterpiece subverts the rules of filmmaking with a boundless enthusiasm that renders such mundanities as acting, screenwriting, and cinematography utterly irrelevant. You will never see a football the same way again.", and holds a 3.6/10 on IMDb. While audiences too generally found the movie awful, it has become a cult classic among fans of bad movies, to the point of even getting midnight showings that fans attend dressed as their favorite character, similar to The Rocky Horror Picture Show and spawning popular memes from scenes where Tommy Wiseau doesn't pronounce words properly, such as "I did naht hit her!" and "...as a human bean".