‘The Disaster Artist’ Review: Franco Brothers Collaborate For Their First Movie Together

By Collin De Lade, Staff Writer

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‘The Disaster Artist” opens nationwide on Dec. 8th.
Photo Courtesy of A24.

Based on a book of the same name by Greg Sestero and Tom Bissell, “The Disaster Artist” is directed by and starring James Franco as Tommy Wiseau and co-starring Dave Franco as Greg Sestero. The film is about the chaotic production of the cult film, “The Room.” For those who don’t know, “The Room” is often referred to as the “Citizen Kane” of bad movies. From Tommy Wiseau’s strange acting to his poor direction, there has been curiosity around how the terrible film got made, and “The Disaster Artist” is here to explain.

The best aspect of “The Disaster Artist” is how much it pays tribute to “The Room” rather than mocking it. It would have been so easy for Franco and friends to make a straight-up comedy about how bad “The Room” is. While “The Disaster Artist” is very much a comedy, I left with a lot more respect for Wiseau’s film than when I walked in with.

James and Dave Franco are fantastic in their respective roles and really sold how these two people become friends. James Franco especially impresses by capturing the mannerisms and emotions of Wiseau. Seth Rogen was great as a character that acted as the audience, calling out the absurd nature of Wiseau. I also got a big kick out of Zac Efron and Josh Hutcherson just for being perfectly cast in their respective roles.

Reading up about what inspired James Franco to make this movie, I found it interesting to see that he came across Greg Sestero’s book before even seeing and becoming a fan of “The Room.” With how much attention went into Sestero and Wiseau’s friendship, it is clear that James Franco intended on making an adaption of the book, rather than a retelling of the most iconic parts of “The Room.”

I’m curious to see what someone who hasn’t seen “The Room” would think of “The Disaster Artist,” because I can’t imagine someone enjoying this movie without knowing the context behind it. I would highly recommend seeing “The Room” first and reading Sestero’s “The Disaster Artist” after seeing the film version. Think of the book as giving more information that wasn’t able to fit into an hour and 45 minute runtime.

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Greg Sestero and Tom Bissell’s book about Sestero’s friendship and experience making “The Room.”
Photo courtesy of Chud.com

“The Disaster Artist” has been hyped up on the internet as one of the best films of the year. It’s disappointing that a film like this is getting hyped up for award season by critics who see it early. While I walked out of the theater loving “The Disaster Artist,” I do not think it is as good of a film as critics are praising it to be.

“The Disaster Artist” is a really great film thanks to James Franco and his passion for this story. The movie succeeds at making you laugh. It gives insight into two friends who bond over wanting to make it in Hollywood. I strongly recommend you check out “The Disaster Artist” in theaters, but watch “The Room” first to really get the most out of it.

8.5/10

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