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October 17, 2009

Reverse Review: The Room

The Reverse Review is our method of rating a movie not by how good it is, but instead by how bad. There are two extremes to the Reverse Scale: 1 = Just plain bad, and 5 = Hilariously bad. If you watch Troll 2 with your friends and laugh about how terrible it is, then you'll understand the Reverse Review.

The Room has gained a sort of cult following, especially on the west coast. In Los Angeles, they hold screenings to packed theaters of people who've seen it multiple times. These fans have picked apart the absurdity of this movie.

Whenever the framed photo of the spoon on the table with the lead characters phone comes into view, they yell "SPOON!" and hurl plastic cutlery at the screen. When one of the countless scenes of male bonding by football tossing comes on, they begin throwing a football of their own back and forth (As closely as possible, the characters in the movie tend to enjoy playing catch inside of buildings).

I'm not a connoisseur of terrible cinema, but I have a friend who is, so I like to think of myself as better educated then most on the subject. So when I heard The Room being called 'The Worst Movie of All Time', I rolled my eyes. These people must not have seen Crystal Force 2, or Manos: The Hands of Fate. But after having finally seen The Room, I'm alright with people sticking it with that title.

This movie is ridiculous. It tells a story that I can sum up in one sentence, but it takes 99 minutes to do so. While a lot of terrible movies center around completely ludicrous plots, at the heart of this films terribleness is the editing and the acting.

While most of the actors/actresses are just simply bad, one exceeded the rest, Tommy Wiseau. The writer, director, producer, and starring role in the film, Tommy sets a whole new precedent for how awful an actor can be.

For some reason he did a voice over track for, as far as I can tell, every single one of his lines. While his mouth moves in what I can only assume are guttural grunts, his voice over lines are just as terrible as what I imagine the grunts would have been as far as acting talent is concerned.

While other movies have had far more out there plots, The Room makes up for that by never staying on track. Scenes jump around as if the editor just grabbed stuff randomly and placed them in that order. Plot points are introduced for seemingly no reason and then never resolved or even mentioned again. Characters act in ways counter productive to their motivations from the scene previous.

All of these facts add up to one thing, hilarity. Seeing this movie in a theater with a group of 10 or so fans, and 3 or 4 other couples that had no idea what they were getting themselves into, was the most fun experience I've had at a movie in a long time. I couldn't stop laughing throughout the entirety of the movie.

5 out of 5 on the Reverse Scale

And now I'l leave you with this little gem, an example of the quality of acting found in The Room. As a bonus, I noticed that Mark picks his nose right after Johnny says "Don't even ask". Keep an eye out for it, it makes the scene that much more ridiculous.


Dan W Manhattan Ph.D said...

Hahah oh my god. I saw this on adult swim one night. I turn to the channel and I see these guys aving this conversation that sounds so poorly written and so poorly acted that I had to keep watching to see what the hell it was about. I ended up watching most of it even though it was so terrible. It was so terrible that it was funny.

On a side note, my Dad lives in Seattle and out there they used to have this show on public television called So Bad It's Good. That show was so great.

Alex R. Cronk-Young said...



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