Enough has been written about THE ROOM, Tommy Wiseau’s weirdly hypnotic anti-masterpiece, that a decent article about its unlikely success practically writes itself: secretive, vaguely European weirdo makes a terrible, lightly porny melodrama, word gets out among the bad movie underground, millions of spoons are thrown, and so forth. Hell, I myself have written that piece in this very forum – twice, if you include my write-up of leading man Greg Sestero’s tell-all book tour. Like THE ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW, midnight screenings of THE ROOM have become less of an event and more of a church-like ritual, occurring with clocklike regularity. So why is this screening special?
For starters, Tommy Wiseau himself is going to be there. If possible, Wiseau is even stranger in person than he is on screen, covered in sunglasses and belts and refusing to answer a single question. I saw him on his first visit to the Coolidge some years back, and his peculiar anti-charisma can fill a room (I also shook his hand, and can confirm that they are roughly five times the size of normal human hands). If you’ve never seen him, it’s an experience not to be missed, even if his Q&A session leaves you with more Q’s than A’s.
But the real treat here is that Tommy is currently touring the pilot episode of his long-gestating sitcom THE NEIGHBORS. For Wiseau scholars, THE NEIGHBORS has been the source of speculation for nearly as long as THE ROOM: a brief, puzzling sizzle reel has been on Youtube for years, but it’s never been clear when the project would see the light of day, or even if it ever really existed in the first place. This year, however, has seen renewed activity on the subject, with new (and seemingly newly shot) footage surfacing, and a suitably baffling website going live. Finally, something resembling a pilot has apparently been assembled, and will be screened for audiences at the Coolidge this weekend. Certain questions remain, of course, such as whether any subsequent episodes will be produced, and how much of the original pilot exists in this version. These questions, and many others, will likely be blown off with a “Next question! Move on!”
THE ROOM (2003) dir. Tommy Wiseau
THE NEIGHBORS (2014?) dir. Tommy Wiseau
Director in person!
11/21 & 11/22, 11:59PM $15
Friday, 11/21, and Saturday, 11/22, 11:59 PM
Coolidge Corner Theatre
290 Harvard Street
Brookline, MA 02446