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Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Steve's Church-less Movie of The Week ...

Yoinked from the almighty wikipedia ...

"The Room is a 2003 independent drama film starring Tommy Wiseau, who also wrote, directed, and produced the feature. In addition to Wiseau, the principal cast includes Juliette Danielle, Greg Sestero, Philip Haldiman, Kyle Vogt, Carolyn Minnott, and Robyn Paris. While the film is primarily centered on the melodramatic love triangle between an amiable banker (Wiseau), his fiancée (Danielle), and his conflicted best friend (Sestero), a significant portion of the movie is dedicated to a series of unrelated subplots involving friends and family of the main characters.

The film has been dubbed 'the Citizen Kane of bad movies' and one of the worst films ever made. Originally only shown in a limited number of California theaters, the film quickly developed a cult following as fans found humor in the film's various technical and narrative flaws. Although Wiseau promotes the film as a black comedy (yeah right!) audiences have generally viewed it as a poorly made drama, a viewpoint supported by some of the film's cast. Within a decade of its premiere, the film was selling out showings around the United States and had inspired a video game, book, and traveling stage show.

The Portland Mercury has pointed out that a number of 'plot threads are introduced, then instantly abandoned.' One of the most notable examples of this is in an early scene, when halfway through a conversation about planning a birthday party for Johnny, Claudette off-handedly tells Lisa: 'I got the results of the test back. I definitely have breast cancer.' The issue is casually dismissed and never revisited during the rest of the film. In addition, the audience never learns the details surrounding Denny's drug-related debt to Chris-R or what led to their violent confrontation on the roof.

In perhaps the most infamous example, the principal male characters congregate in an alley behind Johnny's apartment to play catch with a football while wearing tuxedos. When Mark arrives, he is revealed to have shaved his beard, and the camera slowly zooms in on his face while dramatic music plays on the soundtrack. Nothing that is said or occurs during the game has any impact on the plot, and no explanation is given for why the men are playing football in tuxedos; the scene ends abruptly with the men deciding to return to Johnny's apartment after Peter trips while trying to catch the ball.

The character of Denny has received a great deal of attention from fans for the contrast between his bizarre personality and lack of backstory. Though he is apparently in college, fans have questioned whether he is a fully functioning adult, due to his ignorance of social norms: In the film's opening minutes he jumps onto a bed with Johnny and Lisa, apparently unaware that they are about to have sex, and tells them, 'I just like to watch you guys' seemingly oblivious to the sexual connotations of the statement. Wiseau confirmed in an interview that the character is mentally retarded, stating that he wrote the character this way so that he would be 'confused.'

The Room originated as a play, completed by Tommy Wiseau in 2001. Wiseau then adapted the play into a 500-page book, which he was unable to get published. Frustrated, Wiseau decided to adapt the work into a film, which he would then produce himself in order to maintain total control over the project. Wiseau has been secretive about exactly how he obtained the funding for the project, but he did tell Entertainment Weekly that he made some of the money by importing leather jackets from Korea. According to Greg Ellery, Wiseau came to the Birns and Sawyer film lot, rented a studio, and bought a 'complete Beginning Director package' which included the purchase of a brand new film camera. Wiseau, confused about the differences between 35 mm film and high-definition video, decided to shoot the entire film in both formats with two cameras. The movie's many rooftop sequences were filmed on the soundstage, with exteriors of San Francisco later poorly greenscreened in. The film employed over 400 people, and Wiseau is credited as an actor, an executive producer, the writer, producer, and director. Wiseau had a number of problems with his behind-the-camera team, and replaced the entire crew twice.

Wiseau has claimed in many interviews that while casting the film, he selected his group of actors from amongst 'thousands' of head shots, yet nearly the entire cast of The Room had never before been in a full-length film. For example, The Room was the first film in which Carolyn Minnott had ever appeared. Greg Sestero, who had known Wiseau for some time before production began, had limited film experience and had only agreed to work with Wiseau as part of the production crew. On the first day of filming, Wiseau fired the actor originally hired to play Mark, and Sestero agreed to fill in. He would later admit to being uncomfortable filming his sex scenes, the reason that he was allowed to keep his jeans on while shooting them. Greg Ellery has claimed that Juliette Danielle was just 'off the bus from Texas' when shooting began, and that on the first day of shooting, 'the cast watched in horror' as Wiseau jumped on Danielle and immediately began filming their 'love scene.'

An article on The Room: The Game!

The original script was significantly longer than the one used during filming, and featured a series of lengthy monologues; it was edited on-set by the cast and script-supervisor, who found much of the dialogue incomprehensible. Speaking to Entertainment Weekly, one anonymous cast member claimed that the script contained 'stuff that was just unsayable. I know it's hard to imagine there was stuff that was worse. But there was.' Greg Sestero maintains that Wiseau was adamant characters say their lines the way they were written, but that several cast members managed to slip in ad libs that ended up in the final cut of the film. Wiseau overdubbed many of his own lines for unknown reasons, with the new dialogue not matching up to the movements of his character's mouth.

The film was promoted almost exclusively through a single billboard in Hollywood, located on Highland Avenue just north of Fountain, featuring an image Wiseau refers to as 'Evil Man:' An extreme closeup of his own face with one eye in mid-blink. Although more conventional artwork was created for the film, featuring the main characters' faces emblazoned over the Golden Gate Bridge, Wiseau chose the "Evil Man" for what he regarded as its provocative quality; around the time of the film's release, the image led many passers-by to believe that The Room was a horror film. Wiseau also paid for a small television and print campaign in and around Los Angeles, with taglines calling The Room 'a film with the passion of Tennessee Williams.'

Although Robyn Paris recalled the audience laughing at the film during the premiere, Variety reporter Scott Foundas, who was also in attendance, would later write that the film prompted 'most of its viewers to ask for their money back — before even 30 minutes [had] passed.' described Wiseau's speaking voice in the film as 'Borat trying to do an impression of Christopher Walken playing a mental patient.' The Guardian called the film a mix of 'Tennessee Williams, Ed Wood, R. Kelly's Trapped in the Closet.'

The Room played in the Laemmle Fallbrook and Fairfax for the next two weeks, grossing a total of $1,900 before it was pulled from circulation. During one showing the second week of its run, the sole audience member in attendance was 5secondfilms' Michael Rousselet, who found unintentional humor in the film's poor dialogue and production values. After treating the screening as his 'own private Mystery Science Theater,' Rousselet began calling friends on his cell phone during the ending credits, encouraging them to come to the theater and join him in mocking the film for its next showing. After joining Rousselet, his friends began a word-of-mouth campaign that resulted in about 100 attending the film's final screening.

After the film was pulled from theaters, those who had attended the final showing began e-mailing Wiseau telling him how much they had enjoyed the film. Encouraged by the volume of letters he received, Wiseau arranged to book a single, midnight screening of The Room in June of 2004. With the film having developed a word-of-mouth reputation as the worst movie ever made, the screening proved successful enough that Wiseau booked a second showing in July, which itself spawned a third showing in August. Demand for tickets soon rose to the point that Wiseau had to book the midnight showing on two screens before ultimately scheduling showings at multiple theaters around Los Angeles. Several celebrities became fans of the film, including Paul Rudd, David Cross, and Kristen Bell, and they began to promote the film to friends and co-stars. Bell and Veronica Mars creator Rob Thomas were particularly aggressive in attempting to spread word of the movie, slipping references into episodes of Mars 'as much as possible.' The film eventually developed national as well as international cult status, with Wiseau arranging screenings around the United States and in Canada, Scandinavia, the United Kingdom, Australia and New Zealand."

Steve's Snacks Of The Week:
More Coffee
Ruffles Chips
Cheesy Poofs
Random Candies
Internet P0rn

... AND NOW, Steve and this blog are both PROUD to once again present today's Church-less Movie of the Week in its entirety FOR FREE!

But lets go over a few rules first. There's no talking in Steve's Theater during our feature presentation and talkers WILL be forced to watch today's movie TWICE, a fate worse than death!

Also, no cell phones or African-American berries in the theater. Please dispose of all trash in its proper receptacle. And NO TEXTING! VERY serious about that one.

And be sure to dim your headlights (where applicable).


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