Film Review: The Room (2003)

Release Date: June 27th, 2003
Directed by: Tommy Wiseau
Written by: Tommy Wiseau
Music by: Mladen Milicevic
Cast: Tommy Wiseau, Juliette Danielle, Greg Sestero, Philip Haldiman, Carolyn Minnot

Wiseau-Films, Chloe Productions, TPW Films, 99 Minutes


I’ve had friends talk about this for years. I finally got around to watching it.

I guess my biggest hangup about seeing this, is I thought it would be a giant bore. Despite how bad it is, or how bad I was told it was, it would quickly run its course and I’d be stuck in a 99 minute soul-sucking vacuum. Man, was I wrong.

The Room is terrible in every way. At the same time, it was wonderful in every way. There is that phrase “It was so bad, that it was good.” Sure, even I have said it multiple times describing the experience of certain movies I have reviewed. Never has it been truer, than with The Room.

This film is a literal trip into the enigmatic Tommy Wiseau’s head. I feel like it is the true story of something he went through and had to get out artistically. Sure, the real life version has a different ending but despite this movie’s badness, it felt like it was an artistic expression of real pain.

This film was originally developed as a play, then a 500 page novel that Wiseau couldn’t get published. He grew frustrated and was somehow able to raise the $6 million dollars it took to fund this picture. He was certainly driven and extremely ambitious and no one can fault him for that.

It is almost sad how this film turned out. By comparison, the acting makes an episode of Mighty Morphin Power Rangers look like a top notch Shakespearean play. The dialogue is laughably bad, to the point where I can’t believe the actors weren’t insisting on ad-libbing anything better. Seriously, there are films with deplorable dialogue, then there is The Room.

The plot is mostly disjointed. There are side characters and side plots introduced at every corner but none of them ever develop into anything. Then there are scenes that serve absolutely no purpose, at all. There are scenes that are just repetitive, like every time sociopath Lisa has chats with her awful mother. Or how Johnny (played by Wiseau) is made to look like everyone in San Francisco loves him.

You also have a ton of scenes on the apartment roof, where it is obvious that they are standing in front of a green screen. Were there no rooftops in all of San Francisco that they could have used? Wouldn’t that have been cheaper than studio time with a green screen and then having to plug in the special effects?

You have male characters that all act creepy. You have awkward sex scenes with incredibly crappy slow jams. You have a football that gets more screen time than most of the main characters. You have Johnny dry humping a dress because he’s heartbroken. You have absolute nonsensical madness.

Maybe you could argue that other films have more flaws… like everything Coleman Francis directed. But The Room‘s flaws just hit you over the head like a hammer every time you blink.

But here’s the thing – despite everything that that is wrong with this movie, there is something engaging about it. It weirdly has heart and I have to admit, I did care about Johnny and his well-being and how the mess of the plot was going to play out. And I think that is because it is a story that hit close to home for Wiseau and it was somehow still able to come through.

I always post a trailer at the end of every review. However, I feel like this video will much better entertain and is a better representation of what this film is.

Rating: 3/10

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