Thursday, 8 January 2015

Book Review: The Disaster Artist by Greg Sestero & Tom Bissell

The Disaster Artist: My Life Inside the Room, the Greatest Bad Movie Ever MadeThe Disaster Artist: My Life Inside the Room, the Greatest Bad Movie Ever Made by Greg Sestero
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

When I'm doing non-writey stuff at the computer, such as surfing or art stuff, I've fallen into the habit of listening to podcasts. Still, I tend to disregard audiobooks.

But I have to say, I can't imagine not listening to this novel. Sestero does a perfect Tommy Wiseau impression that to merely read the text really limits the full feel of The Disaster Artist.

I first heard about The Room from online reviewers. I think it was The Bunny Perspective, and I've only been able to sit through it with Rifftrax commentary. But I absolutely needed to read this book for myself.

After reading some reviews mentioning Sestero's Tommy impression, I knew I couldn't read it, I had to listen to it.

So, while doing things that did not require my brain to form words, I had my head firmly sandwiched in my earphones and carried my phone around in my pocket as it played the mp3.

This story of friendship and making one's dream come true is at once warm, creepy, melancholy, silly, welcoming and cringe-educing. The reader-listener will be constantly veering between schadenfreude, "Nope!" and groaning. Armchair psychology will also be hard to avoid as the layers of the intensely private Wiseau are slowly peeled away. Or are they?

One thing is, Wiseau's belief in his film was genuine. He honestly thought he was making a masterpiece, conventional moving-making and storytelling be damned! And his earnestness is charming.
Last night while almost finished the audiobook, I went back and re-watched The Room(Rifftrax), and knowing now the honest intention, and how hard Wiseau (and others) struggled during scenes made it an even more fascinating watch.

If you're a fan of The Room, of bad movies, or just in moving making in general, I strongly recommend you give this one a listen.




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