Many of us today have seen at least one movie that’s truly awful in every aspect (bad acting, directing etc), but to you personally, it’s somehow enjoyable. Or, maybe it’s a film that’s lots of fun to watch when you have the right group of friends around the flat screen. Maybe, some of us watched a film over and over at a young age and as you got older you realised “This is seriously a bad film- how did I ever like it!?” Some of my personal, favourite, horrible films are:
* The Marine (2006)
* Kung Pow (2002)
* The Pirate Movie (1892)
In 2003, a motion picture film titled “The Room” came to cinemas and changed the world. Its lead actor was a man named Tommy Wiseau, who at the time, many had never heard off. In 2003 the film did rather poorly in cinemas, critics and cinemas audiences alike disliking it. But, as time went on, the film actually developed a massive cult following and is now to be considered by many “a masterpiece”. The Disaster Artist, 2017, is a film about the creation and workings of this very film.
Before I go on any further, I must confess- I personally have never watched the entire duration of the 2003 movie, The Room. I have; however, watched key scenes (not the sex scenes!) in the past as I was curious how this film become so damn popular. Needless to say, many people loved the film because it was just so bad. For some, it’s a treasured comedy.
The Disaster Artist starts with Greg (Dave Franco), an actor who is currently struggling to remove his shyness during his acting classes where he holds back in fear. He meets a new guy in a class named Tommy (James Franco), who appears fearless on the stage and has no care of what others think. Tommy is a man who is willing to give it all to make his way to the top. Tommy soon meets Dave and helps him become a man of confidence on stage. The two of them also develop a strong friendship and agree to never let each other fall down, to always encourage one another and never stop until their shared dreams come true.
After Tommy (James Franco) continues to be rejected for acting jobs in film, he decides now is the time to write, direct and be the lead actor in his very own film. Tommy also asks for the help of his friend Dave, asking him to play a key role in the film in hopes that he too will become famous.
For those who didn’t know, the two lead actors of Tommy and Greg are actually brothers in real life (James and Dave). At no point did the film show the family connection on screen.
When I heard this film was in post-production, I struggled to picture the pretty boy actor, James Franco, in this role. This is a character that he has truly nailed 100%- James Franco IS Tommy Wiseau. The mannerisms, the costumes, the vocals, heck- even the quirky laugh- all make James Franco unrecognisable and had me leaving the cinema absolutely shocked and full of praise. The humour in the film are not jokes added or altered by the actor James Franco, but simply a portrayal of what actually occurred in the making of “The Room”.
Considering this film is about the making of one of the worst films in history, The Disaster Artist will also have the audience members left feeling rather positive and encouraged.
While the film does feel like it’s been completed in High Definition, it also feels like it has been filmed with the use of a basic handy cam. The camera at times will also shake out of the frame and some shots are poorly focused… BUT! The film’s issues are all nods to the 2003 film “The Room”- simply brilliant parts of the film’s humour. The film style and tone also makes it feel early 2000’s as the film also discusses High Def and Digital camera work.
The Disaster Artist is clever, creative, well written and brilliantly acted. James Franco has delivered his best work here as Director and Lead Actor. Funnily enough, Tommy Wiseau also acted and directed in the 2003 film “The Room”.
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Review Written by Peter Walkden