This quirky film about the making of an even more bizarre film, makes for unusual, and mildly entertaining viewing.
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In the late 1990s, two struggling actors meet in an acting class in San Francisco. Greg (Dave Franco) is trying to find his confidence as an actor even though he has the passion, while Tommy (James Franco) has an abundance of confidence, but seemingly little passion to do anything with it.
They make a pact to push one another, and move to Los Angeles to pursue their acting dreams. Tommy, it seems, has access to a small fortune of unexplained cash. Like his strange accent and unwillingness to admit to his actual age, there is a lot to Tommy that isn’t as it appears
In LA, reality starts to hit; and after months of rejections, the two decide to make better use of Tommy’s unexplained fortune and make their own film. It is, as you’d expect from two untrained filmmakers, an absolute train wreck. The only way it manages to stay in production is through the wads of cash Tommy keeps throwing into it.
The actors and production crew are highly sceptical of both Tommy and his filmmaking abilities, but with cash in their pockets, they continue nevertheless.
The Disaster Artist is based on the making of the film The Room, a film the inexperienced and untalented Tommy Wiseau wrote, directed, produced and starred in. While it made all of $1,800 at the box office, and was largely propped up by Wiseau’s endless funding, it has somehow become a cult classic—simply because it was just so unbelievably bad.
Today, the film has an underground following, and allegedly packs out cinemas whenever it is resurrected onto the big screen. Unfortunately, like the actual film on which it is based, The Disaster Artist is also quite bad—but not so bad that it’s actually good.
With a few fleeting moments of comic genius, The Disaster Artist spends way too much time dealing with its insufferable lead and too little time arguing the case for why this person’s story is at all interesting and deserving of a biography. Many of the film’s best moments happen prior to the opening credits and when Seth Rogan, who plays the screenplay doctor, is on screen. Like all of us, he’s barely hanging in there.
I love a cult film. There’s an inexplicable magic to why some films are just fun to watch over and over again—especially with others who share that love. Trying to explain that through exposition like this feels unnecessary and strained. Anyone who’s ever been to film school knows how a bad film is made—knowing how to make a good one is a skill only a few possess.
If the film he made wasn’t painful enough, The Disaster Artist only extends it. Perhaps this one is just for the die-hard fans, burning to know how such a bad film was ever brought to life. Clearly, I’m not one of them.
Director: James Franco
Stars: James Franco, Dave Franco
Runtime: 1hour 43mins
Release Date: 30 November
Reviewer Rating: 2/5
Feature image via pinterest
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