The Room [INDEPENDENT FILM REVIEW]

Director: Tommy Wiseau
Production Company: Wiseau Films
Genre: Drama/Black Comedy
One Sentence Synopsis: A love triangle causes friction between friends and lovers
Series: Standalone
Release Date: June 27, 2003
Running Time: 1 hr 39 min
Website: Click Here
Trailer: Click Here
Reviewed by: Reverend Leviathan
Final Score: 2.5 Moons (Out of 5)

Though this film has been out for fourteen years now, I had only heard of it a couple years ago.  It was described to me as “legendary” and many reviews described it as being the “worst film ever made.”  Being a fan of independent, B films and critically-panned movies I decided I had to check it out and throw in my two cents as well, as we’re coming upon the release of The Disaster Artist, a film that is about the making of The Room.

Story

Johnny (Tommy Wiseau) is a successful banker who lives happily in a San Francisco townhome with his “future wife” Lisa (Juliette Danielle).  His love for her is always being shown by presenting her with gifts, flowers, and everything else she could want.  However, Lisa reveals to her mother (Carolyn Minnott) that she doesn’t love Johnny anymore and doesn’t know if she can go through with the wedding.  Claudette suggests she not break Johnny’s heart and stay with him for the support.

The relationship begins to unravel as Lisa is having an affair with Johnny’s best friend, Mark (Greg Sestaro).  More drama ensues as Lisa lies to her mother and others, saying that Johnny got drunk and hit her.  If that’s not enough, a young boy named Denny (Philip Haldiman), who Johnny unofficially adopted, is getting into trouble with drugs and drug dealers demanding money.

All of the drama surrounding Johnny begins tearing him apart.  He’s getting disrespect from Lisa, the promotion he thought he’d get at work fell through, and he begins suspecting the affair that his best friend is having is with Lisa.  What will happen to Johnny?

All the critical moments in the story take place in the room (hence, the title) so I’m sure we’ll find out there.

Presentation

I’m not sure if I’ve ever been more conflicted reviewing a film than I have while watching The Room.  I mean, the movie is really awful.  Horrible dialogue, bad acting, bad musical selection, bad production, bad directing; and yet I enjoyed every minute of it!  The movie was originally intended to be a drama, but my friends and I were laughing almost throughout the entire film.  It’s a very good movie to watch in a group setting, and have a type of Mystery Science Theater commentary while watching it.  So for production it should get one moon, but for entertainment it deserves five moons.

One of the issues that many of us have noticed about the film: the love scenes.  What the hell is Tommy Wiseau doing?  Having sex with her belly button?

And the music selection for the love scenes was not good at all.  There are three sex scenes within the first half hour, and that’s a lot to endure.  Tommy Wiseau reportedly said that his rear end should be shown in the film to ensure its success.

The dialogue in the film and how it’s delivered is laughable.  You will be laughing out loud more than once.  I lost count of how many times I heard “Oh, hi.”  People have created a drinking game where you have to take a shot every time someone says that line.  Make sure you have a designated driver!

There are numerous plot holes in the film.  Why are Johnny and his friends tossing a football while wearing tuxes?  There was no mention of a dress rehearsal or a fitting.  Claudette mentions to Lisa, very nonchalantly, that she has breast cancer.  It’s only mentioned once!  And Lisa acts as if it didn’t affect her and continues their regular conversation.  And who in the hell is Denny, why did Johnny “adopt” him, and what are the details surrounding the supposed drug deal?

I am able to write one good paragraph about the film.  The musical score done by Mladen Milicevic was good.  The audio made the video watchable (Tommy Wiseau recorded film and digital simultaneously, so the quality changes within scenes), and it’s a film that sticks with you.  You will find yourself quoting it to your friends and talking about it well after viewing it.  So Tommy Wiseau succeeded at making a film that people will indeed remember, whether you want to or not.

"I did not hit her! I did not! Oh, hi, Mark."

“I did not hit her! I did not! Oh, hi, Mark.”

Gothic Fit

There is a lot of accidental tongue-in-cheek humor in The Room that the Gothic viewer could appreciate.  Johnny’s apartment is decorated in somewhat of a Gothic theme, so looking in the room that almost 90% of the film takes place might be pleasing to the eyes.  The abuse of trust and love forming into one huge tragedy might also be enjoyable.

Closing Thoughts

The Room is quite possibly the best worst film I have ever seen!  This is something that everyone should see at least once, preferably in a group while drinking.

Story: 2.0 Moons (Out of 5)
Presentation: 1.0 Moons (Out of 5)
Gothic Fit: 2.0 Moons (Out of 5)
Final Score (not an average): 2.5 Moons (Out of 5)

Score: Two point five moons

Author: Reverend Leviathan

Reverend Leviathan is the Music & Media Editor at DarkestGoth Magazine.

He has been part of the Gothic community since his high school years. He released an album in 2008 entitled “Eden’s Graveyard” and has also self-published a book, Gothlic: The Testimony of a Catholic Goth. He specializes in music (Goth, ambient, industrial, horror punk and doom metal) and independent films. You can follow him at Facebook.com/revleviathan7.

If you have questions about having your music or media reviewed or featured at DarkestGoth, you can email Reverend Leviathan directly. (Not all music or media will be eligible for coverage by DGM, due to its style or the current knowledge base of DGM staff. If your media is accepted, we are currently estimating a 90-120 day turnaround for reviews and/or other coverage, so please plan requests accordingly.)

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