Movie Review: The Disaster Artist!
The Disaster Artist (2017)
Starring: James Franco, Dave Franco, Seth Rogen, Paul Scheer, Alison Brie
Directed By: James Franco
What happens when drive and ambition outweigh actual talent? That’s the story behind The Disaster Artist, the long awaited movie version of the making of The Room, aka the worst movie ever made. Considered by many to be the “Citizen Kane of bad movies”, The Disaster Artist, based on the book by the same name, chronicles the misadventures of Greg Sistero and his friend Tommy Wiseau in late ‘90’s Hollywood. After years of getting little to no work, the two decide to create their own movie, and thus, movie history is born.
In an odd bit of synergy, The Disaster Artist is produced, directed, and starring James Franco as Tommy Wiseau, the real life weirdo who also produced, directed, and starred in The Room, as well as writing it. But Franco doesn’t stop there, as his portrayal as Tommy Wiseau stretches far beyond your typical role. There are moments where the line between Franco and Wiseau blurs so much that my brain actually forgot that I was watching James Franco play Wiseau. Franco has every aspect of this larger than life (and even larger than this planet) figure: the hair, the weird eye, and the slurred, borderline Transylvanian accent that Wiseau swears is “New Orleans”. He’s truly a lock for a Best Actor nomination at the Oscars this year, and I hope he gets it if only for the chance to see Wiseau walk the red carpet with him.
Franco’s brother Dave plays Greg Sistero, the friend/co-star of The Room who sacrifices better career choices because of his friend. While his wig comes and goes in quality (which actually adds to the movie’s charms), the younger Franco has a lot of charm and warmth in his portrayal of Sistero. You root for him to get free of Wiseau’s grasp and do his own thing, but you also feel for him because of his bond with Wiseau, who’s so weird and desperate for his friend’s attention that it’s honestly kind of heartbreaking at moments.
That’s the real appeal of The Disaster Artist. While it’s definitely one of the funniest movies I’ve ever seen, there’s a real heart to it as well. You see the passion that Wiseau and Sistero put into a film that is destined to crash and burn. But that crash and burn is necessary for their journey. For all of its laughs and awesome cameos (The Room is a right of passage for nearly every major comedy star of the last ten years it seems), The Disaster Artist is also a surprisingly sweet and heartfelt look into the minds of two guys who followed their dreams and achieved something, even if the result was one of the worst movies ever made.