I’ve had some very uncomfortable moments in my life. There was the time in the first grade where I had a crush on a girl and so I got her a flower. As I was mentally planning out our life together, I later saw that she had given it to another guy. Then there’s the time I had the exciting talk with my parents about how I was attracted to men. When asked how I knew that I was interested in other men, and if I had tried being with a female, all I could do was think back to my scorned affections in the first grade while answering, “Yes!” On that list of uncomfortable moments is the time a friend recommended I watch what he referred to as, “The greatest film ever made!” This was over a decade ago and I was hungry for new films, but instead of a Citizen Kane-type of experience, Tommy Wiseau’s The Room left me completely bewildered.
Was The Room an elaborate joke? Was it made ironically and meant to be an intentional parody? How does something so incredibly poorly written, acted and directed get made? I’ve never left a film with more questions, and the fact that it lingers in your mind much longer than it has any right to is the very reason it has gained cult status. Having interviewed Tommy Wiseau and attended multiple midnight showings didn’t help to answer any of my questions, but watching the essential companion piece known as The Disaster Artist added a clarity I never thought I would get even after I died.