‘The Disaster Artist’
Director: James Franco
Starring: James Franco, Dave Franco
4 (Out Of 5) Globes
Plot: Tommy Wiseau (James Franco) and Greg Sistero (Dave Franco) are both budding actors that dream of making it big in Hollywood. But after moving out to Los Angeles they struggle to make a name or penny for themselves. This convinces Tommy to write and direct his own movie, entitled ‘The Room.’ Unbeknownst to Tommy, though, the script is awful, his acting is atrocious, and his directing aimless, and the production soon descends into a mess. All of which is even more amazing because this is based on a true story, as “The Room” was released and is now regarded as both one of the worst movies ever made and a cult classic.
Review: You don’t need to have seen “The Room” to get wrapped up in “The Disaster Artist.” It helps, though.
Once the detailed and precise recreation of “The Room’s” production begins your prior knowledge of just how disastrous the film really is doesn’t just give “The Disaster Artist” instant integrity, but it makes its punchlines and moments land even harder. Thankfully for those of you that haven’t seen Tommy Wiseau’s cult classic director James Franco and writers Scott Neustadter and Michael H. Weber are more than aware that simply re-creating “The Room” wouldn’t have sufficed.
Instead they imbue it with a heart and journey that everyone can connect with and is the backbone to “The Disaster Artist.” Meanwhile the supporting cast of Seth Rogen, Ari Graynor, Josh Hutcherson, Jacki Weaver, Zac Efron, and June Diane Raphael are able to sell the outlandishness and comedy of the chaotic and bizarre situation in such a way that you feel like you’re stood alongside them watching it all go wrong.
This is the James Franco show, though. His performance is constantly on point, as you’re transfixed by Tommy Wiseau’s increasingly erratic behavior but never annoyed or aggravated by it. In fact, by its conclusion you’re actually rooting for him.
Behind the camera is really where Franco flourishes, as there’s a pace to “The Disaster Artist” that makes up it for its occasionally uneven and clunky structure. Franco also makes sure that the film celebrates Tommy’s bravery and dedication to persevere and finish his film, ending in a manner that’s genuinely uplifting.
Most of all, though, “The Disaster Artist” is just preposterously entertaining, and is one of the rare Oscar worthy films that makes you soar rather than feel drained. Because make no mistake about it, Franco’s performance and Weber and Neustadter’s script mean that “The Disaster Artist” is certainly an awards season contender.