The Disaster Artist by Greg Sestero (4 out of 5)

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In lieu of my usual review, I decided that this book deserved a review like no other I have (haven’t) written. For The Room is, supposedly, unlike any film I will eventually see. I felt as if I should have seen it, but I also feel as if I have to be drunk on a bottle of wine before I can do so. In the meantime, until that happens…

Greg Sestero is one of the “stars” of The Room, a cult classic orchestrated by the enigmatic, oddball persona known as Tommy Wiseau. I had never heard of him or of Sestero, but now I have to, at some point, watch this 99 minute fiasco to appreciate the book in all its glory. I did re-read it a second time, because my stunned brain could not process the oddities thrown at my cerebellum the first time around. I wrote up a list of questions and observations. My friend Dave offered to answer them, and I’m sure he would do his best, but there’s no way in hell I think he could answer these. That’s not taking anything away from my friend or his intellect. I just think Tommy and this film and all connected with it are way too out there for normal human beings to come up with any sort of plausible solution. Having said that, here goes with the questionaire/observations. I welcome responses, comments, anyone outside of Saturn’s outer ring rollerbladers, who may reply. Here goes nothing (much like the movie itself, from all indications). 

1. Why does Tommy always order a glass of HOT water at a restaurant? Most of the world orders cold water.                                         2. Tommy tips like a Gibboid                                                                                                                                                                       3. John Hughes WAS fucking awesome.(I always thought that, but there is an anecdote in here that confirms it).                                     4. 5 cans of Red Bull- is Tommy’s “normal” intake? How has his heart not exploded? (For those who wonder, yes, he’s still alive).          5. Dying his hair right before he’s due to start filming? Just because?                                                                                                      6. Tommy Wiseau is the Captain Beefheart of cult film (singular, not plural).                                                                                            7. How is eating an apple a sexual symbol????                                                                                                                                         8. Would a “tunic length goes to prep school rugby shirt” make you appear super young or super dumb?                                               9. Why does Tommy hate everyone drinking water?                                                                                                                                  10. What the hell is a “donut hairstyle”?                                                                                                                                                    11. Vampire from Alcatraz?                                                                                                                                                                        12. Why would you keep a shopping cart full of plastic bags in your house?  By the same estimation, why would you use old dirty T-shirts for pillows, instead of actual pillows?                                                                                                                                                 13. Why would you film one film with two different cameras? Especially a film like this?                                                                             14. What is the fascination with throwing the football? Does Tommy think he’s the reverse Charlie Brown?                                              15. Richard Marx- WHY?                                                                                                                                                                           16. Of all the awesome Van Halen songs for Tommy to get excited enough to sing, he picks “Dreams”?                                                  17. You can’t shoot ‘hoops’ (basketball) WITHOUT a hoop.                                                                                                                      18. Tommy’s spending habits- spending insane amounts of money one day, then being a cheap bastard the next- make him a Giblet.  19. How can a dead executive producer be involved with the film? They’re dead.                                                                                     20. Oh my God. The Room hotline number- and hotline- really do work.                                                                                                   21. Although Tommy has no real idea who Joe Montana is, he’s right about him being a prick.                                                                 22. I’m glad Tommy knew Osama Bin Laden was a prick and that he (Tommy, not Bin Laden) has true American pride.                          23. Retro Puppet Master-Greg’s film- has anyone seen this? Would be worth a shot. I would recommend a double feature with The Room.                                                                                                                                                                                                         24. I wonder if footage-Youtube or otherwise- exists of Tommy’s Shakespeare commercial that “got him” into the SAG.                         25. Why would anyone need a second belt to hold up their butt?                                                                                                              26. Tommy reminds me of a cross between Gene Simmons and Billy Squier.                                                                                           27. Signing Greg up for a 7-mile run with no warning- Greg has to run (actually, he walks. Spoiler alert) in SANDALS. Only thing missing are socks.                                                                                                                                                                                      28. Leif Ericson and Peter Frampton are related- to Tommy Wiseau.                                                                                                       29. Tommy’s attitude toward Greg having friends is eerily like that of a jealous lover.                                                                               30. In the film- recording the conversation when Johnny overhears the whole thing with his own two ears- there is no conceivable reason for someone to record it for posterity when they are right there to hear it. Why would anyone insist on otherwise?                      31. Tommy Wiseau- future Calvin Klein underwear model? (Shudder.)                                                                                                     32. Spending New Year’s Eve at the base of the Hollywood sign actually sounds like a great idea.                                                           33. Tommy hanging upside down from the pull-up bar like a bat- is far too easy to visualize (double shudder).                                        34. There’s some merit in keeping your Christmas tree up all year round.                                                                                                35. There is also merit to having Thanksgiving MONTH instead of day, and eating turkey every day for that month.                                36. There is NO merit to having pumpkins rotting away on your doorstep for over a year, instead of throwing them out when they go bad.                                                                                                                                                                                                             37. How is Wiseau’s name pronounced?                                                                                                                                                   38. Someone drinks a half bottle of Nyquil and 7 Red Bulls and survives!                                                                                                39. Wearing tuxedos while playing football? What the fuck?  Why?                                                                                                          40. I know not what to say of this scene with the red dress (prolonged shudder). And then to smell the dress? EEWW…

Aren’t you glad that’s over? The questionaire/observations, that is. The Room, with its cult status of worst movie ever, will never quite go away. This book only goes to prove it. Life is all too serious these days, so a book like this comes along, you most certainly should drop whatever Oprah Book Club Regenerated 10.0 pick you are reading, and read this instead. You will shake your head. Multiple times. You will laugh. And you will wonder some more. I’m sure they may be others who go through and re-read it. Simply put, it’s hard to get your head around the first time. For all the weirdness that is Tommy Wiseau, you feel some sense of compassion for him by the end of the book. No matter how annoyed Greg gets, he ends up having some measure of respect for Tommy’s oddball beliefs, “work” ethics, indistinguishable accents, etc. And so will you by the end of the book. 

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~ by generationgbooks on December 8, 2013.

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