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The Room (2003)

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This week, I’ve decided to change a bit the ethics of MUST, so beware because if you decide to take this advice your life will never be the same. For those who haven’t heard about this movie after all the fuzz surrounding James Franco, Greg Sestero and Tommy Wiseau, trust me you’re about to walk into a new world in which nothing is normal and in which guys play American football with tuxedos. From a love affair to a woman who is not devastated at all for having breast cancer but who is upset with her daughter because she wants to ditch a guy who is going to buy her a house, ladies and gentlemen this is The Room.

Forget everything you know about love and trust and get ready to meet Johnny (Tommy Wiseau), a man who has the most incomprehensible accent I’ve ever heard and who loves to say “Oh hi!”. Johnny is in love with Lisa (Juliette Danielle) who wants to cheat him with Mark (Greg Sestero)… The problem is that Mark is Johnny’s best friend but in the end but thanks to Lisa’s persuasion skills no one gives a damn! Yeah everyone loves a good love triangle, especially with “sexy” scenes in the middle… But wait there’s more! You will meet the greatest mother of all time, Lisa’s mother, Claudette (Carolyn Minnott)… A woman who gives the best advices to her daughter, including not marrying with the guy you are in love with if the other one wants to buy you a house. And at last but not the least you will meet a series of unconventional and silly characters like Denny (Philip Haldiman), a creepy young boy who wants to see Johnny and Lisa in bed and who is in love with her (Everyone in the movie is in love with Lisa!) . Denny is the youngest character in the movie but is interpreted by the oldest actor in the cast (Tommy’s age remains a mystery for me and Claudette is only there to say crappy lines). So prepare yourselves for an hour and half of these guys hanging around, jumping from scene to scene while they say hi all the time to each other. But wait there’s more…

When The Room was first released, the bad reactions led it to become a box office flop… Seriously no one wanted to see it and Tommy spent a considerable amount of money trying to sell the movie. He gave is best to fulfill his dreams, he had the money (read The Disaster Artist for more details surrounding Tommy’s fortune, he had the confidence, he had a vision but unfortunately he had no talent. By that time, the cast and crew had lost faith in the movie (Well, no one besides Tommy had faith in it…) but suddenly, out of nowhere, a couple of guys walks into a movie theater and I don’t know if this was a sign of god or anything like that but when those guys read in their tickets a small note regarding that there were no refunds, they knew that the movie they were about to see was going to be an unforgettable experience. And when those guys left the theater, the flop became a legend, an icon and a huge hit with legions of fans all around the world ready to pay a couple of bucks to see Mr. Tommy himself live alongside with a screening of the movie. Screening after screening, night after night, Tommy was finally watching his dreams being fulfilled and even if it wasn’t Oscar material like he wanted it to be… He managed to direct, written, produce and preform in the best worst movie ever made.

Now, more than 10 years after its release, The Room is known all around the world for the peculiar dialogues, for Tommy’s terrific acting skills and for spoons… In the screenings, people dress like their favorite characters from the movie and interact with the characters in some of the most iconic scenes. From plastic spoons being thrown to the screens to repeating some of the amazing quotes of the movie, watching Wiseau’s movie is like entering a parallel universe in which bad becomes good and in which people have the fun of their lives witnessing a poor guy being cheated by his best friend. This week’s MUST is my way to invite you to experience a new reality and to give you an opportunity to be part of the large number of people who has witnessed the scene in which Tommy yells, in despair, “You’re tearing me apart, Lisa!”.  Amazingly funny and bad in every sense of the word, The Room is Wiseau’s ticket to fulfill his dreams and it’s the best experience you can have with a bad movie. Gather your friends and watch this as soon as possible. You’ll laugh, you’ll cry and you’ll probably hate me if you end up disliking this experience but trust me, this is a movie I will remember for the rest of my life.

★½

ABOUT TIME

About Time (2013)

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  • Directed by: Richard Curtis
  • With: Domhnall Gleeson, Rachel McAdams, Bill Nighy
  • 123 Minutes

Rachel McAdams and Domhnall Gleeson are a weird combination that worked pleasantly well. Thanks to Richard Curtis, McAdams is no longer the face of cheesy romantic comedies and I left the theater stunned with one of the most beautiful stories I’ve ever seen. I cried, I laughed and here I am convincing you to the same!

Whether you like him or not, the fact is that Richard Curtis is a man capable of achieving great things when it comes to romance. From Notting Hill to Bridget Jones’s Diary without forgetting the amazing Love Actually, Curtis’ directing career is admirable and inspiring which kind of reflects the main reason why one should feel excited for About Time. First of all the movie suits almost perfectly in the well-known Rachel McAdams movie type but it’s a lot better than The Time Traveller’s Wife (if this was your main concern). Starring in the movie are also the amazing Bill Nighy and Domhnall Gleeson, the leading actor in Frank and the main reason why I’m here revisiting this review. Probably one of the best movies of 2013 (one of my picks for the Top 10 movies of that year), About Time is a romantic comedy about time travels and about the eternal power of love.

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Because I’m simply revisiting this review, I will leave you with a Synopsis by Universal Pictures:

“At the age of 21, Tim Lake (Domhnall Gleeson) discovers he can travel in time… The night after another unsatisfactory New Year party, Tim’s father (Bill Nighy) tells his son that the men in his family have always had the ability to travel through time. Tim can’t change history, but he can change what happens and has happened in his own life-so he decides to make his world a better place…by getting a girlfriend. Sadly, that turns out not to be as easy as you might think. Moving from the Cornwall coast to London to train as a lawyer, Tim finally meets the beautiful but insecure Mary (Rachel McAdams). They fall in love, then an unfortunate time-travel incident means he’s never met her at all. So they meet for the first time again-and again-but finally, after a lot of cunning time-traveling, he wins her heart. Tim then uses his power to create the perfect romantic proposal, to save his wedding from the worst best-man speeches, to save his best friend from professional disaster and to get his pregnant wife to the hospital in time for the birth of their daughter, despite a nasty traffic jam outside Abbey Road. But as his unusual life progresses, Tim finds out that his unique gift can’t save him from the sorrows and ups and downs that affect all families, everywhere. There are great limits to what time travel can achieve, and it can be dangerous too.“

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For those who seek for truly emotional and lovely experiences, Curtis presents with About Time his most sentimental work. A romantic comedy not only about love but also about family and about life and its issues that got me with an amazing soundtrack (which I will mention next) and great performances that made it look natural before my eyes. As long as I can remember I never felt like the way I did watching this movie in a theater so just by telling you this you can clearly see that About Time is a lot more than just a cheesy romantic comedy. In fact, that is the reason why during several months, the story was floating in my mind. Rachel McAdams relaxed look accompanied by one of her best performances so far is a clear sign of the distance between the typical romantic comedies and About Time. Instead of focusing all the attention in the couple and in the love story, About Time follows the good and bad moments of their lives and tries to be funny and different with the time travels deal. Yes, there are some flaws in that topic but in the end, the time travels are there only as an accessory for the story. Domhnall Gleeson plays the guy who never was that successful with girls and who during his entire life was stuck in the middle of a giant bubble without revealing signs of true happiness. However after being introduced to his great ability, Gleeson turns into a grown-up man, worried with things that matter and who is there to support his family and the love of his life. A surprising performance that got me for the character’s true nature… Both Gleeson and McAdams did a pleasant job during the movie. Mary (Rachel) was a beautiful and successful woman who falls in love with Tim (Domhnall) and from that moment on the movie is like an elevator going up to reach happiness. Everything goes well until…

2013, ABOUT TIME

I usually don’t cry watching movies but there are some exceptions and this was one of those cases. I’ve always feared losing someone who meant a lot to me (mostly because this happened to me a couple of years ago) so there’s a particular scene in the movie which was especially tough for me to watch. The movie as a whole is incredibly touching but that precise moment was what really defined my opinion about it. The soundtrack is inspiring and from catchy tunes to easy listening songs, you’re definitely going to have a good time while you listen to it. Overall, Richard Curtis gave me two of the best hours I’ve ever spent in a theater room… I was happy, I was sad, I was amazed and I felt like I’ve just seen a beautiful and honest representation of life. Inspiring, lovely and powerful, About Time is a must-see for almost everyone I know. A both beautiful and captivating experience that pleased me and that gave me reasons to feel happy about my life. After watching it, I felt relieved and different in a way. About Time is about happiness, about love and about the things that matter the most in life.

★★★★½

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