Generally, I try to avoid bad movies. If you read this blog regularly, then you might have caught my post on things to look out for, namely mockbusters, breast implants, Rob Schneider, and several bad directors. At the bottom of the list, I mentioned a 2003 film called The Room—a film so bad that it has been dubbed by many to be the worst American film ever made. That alone should be reason enough to avoid it.
Sometimes, however, bad movies are bad in all the right ways, and it just so happens that The Room is very much one of those kinds of movies. And that, my friends, is thanks entirely to writer, director, producer, and star of the film, Tommy Wiseau. The man is somewhat mysterious, and despite his thick European accent, he (insistently) maintains that he is an American and grew up in New Orleans. His acting is deplorable, and yet somehow also enthralling. Sure enough, he’s been in one or two other things, but everybody who knows him knows him from The Room. Indeed, the film has gained something of a cult following, and is still shown at midnight screenings at theatres in California. Hell, there’s even been a stage adaptation of the film.
The blurb on the back of the DVD reads, “The Room is an electrifying American black comedy about love, passion, betrayal, and lies. It’s what happens in real life. You could be with your loving woman and all of a sudden BOOM! She’s in bed with your best friend or a family member. The Room depicts the depths of friendships and relationships in one’s life and realizes life’s real and most asked question: ‘Can you ever really trust anyone?’ …Are you ready to see reflections of your life?”
Pay no attention to the “black comedy” bit—think of that as post filming damage control. The film is indeed hilarious, but I have a hard time believing any of it was intentional. In any event, this is my firm recommendation. Believe it or not, after checking out several YouTube clips, I actually shelled out twenty dollars and bought the wretched thing.
And it was money well spent. But just what exactly is The Room like? Below is several of my (and many others’) favourite scenes
Personally, this is my favourite scene. It captures the tone and character of the film so quickly. Seriously, the entire movie is like this:
This scene is so strangely paced and random, but its randomness is its selling point.
YOU’RE TEARING ME APART
For many fans, this is the best line of the film. I too enjoy it, though the film is rife with highly quotable lines, this not necessarily chief among them. Nonetheless, it’s a good one.
The Room is known for many things, not the least of which being its many dropped plot lines. This is the first and only mention of Lisa’s mother’s breast cancer. If nothing else, the mother’s nonchalance is amusing.
JOHNNY’S WORDS OF WISDOM
Here’s a clip with Denny, a character who is, as Wiseau explains, “really retarded a little bit.”
Rowing For Pleasure is a weekly opinions column written by Z S Roe. Please leave a comment or question—all opinions are welcome, and all contributions are greatly appreciated. If you like what you read here, please subscribe.