The Disaster Artist

Rated 4.0

James Franco does Tommy Wiseau, director of The Room—the greatest bad film ever—a cinematic honor with this movie in much the same way Tim Burton glorified shlockmeister Ed Wood over 20 years ago. Franco directs and stars as Tommy, complete with the awesome long vampire black hair and chipmunk cheeks. He also nails the Wiseau mystery accent. (While his IMDB profile says he was born in 1955 and comes from Poland, nobody seems to really know Wiseau’s true background). For the first time in a movie, Franco costars with brother Dave, who gets one of his best roles yet as the also legendarily bad Greg Sestero, friend to Tommy and costar in The Room. The film starts in San Francisco, with Greg struggling to remember lines in a savagely bad acting class attempt at Waiting for Godot. Strange classmate Tommy lumbers onto the stage to butcher a scene from A Streetcar Named Desire, and a friendship is born. The two agree to work on scenes together, bond in their lousiness and, thanks to Wiseau’s strange and unexplained apparent wealth, move to Los Angeles to fulfill their dreams to become actors. After a stretch of unsuccessful auditions, the pair decide to make their own movie, and this is where the film really takes off. Fans of The Room will rejoice in hilarious recreations of such iconic moments as “You’re tearing me apart, Lisa!” and “Oh, hi Mark!” The Disaster Artist—which is actually based on the book The Disaster Artist: My Life Inside The Room, the Greatest Bad Movie Ever Made co-written by Sestero—is heartwarming for multiple reasons. It’s fun to see a misfit make it, even though it’s in a roundabout sort of way, and it’s fun to see that accomplishment depicted by the Franco brothers. It’s about time these guys did something together. May it be the first of many future collaborations.