It isn’t about the movie – it’s about the audience.
Tommy Wiseau wrote, directed, produced and starred in this 2003 film about Johnny, a bank executive inexplicably engaged to the personification of all evil, Lisa. (You can’t help but wonder who broke Wiseau’s heart and caused this travesty of a film to be made.) Recently one of the stars of the film, Greg Sestero, published the book The Disaster Artist about his experiences working on the movie and the reality seems to have been as disastrous as it looked.
There’s a perverse joy to be found in any watching of The Room’s most famous scenes – the timing, poor scripting and strange pseudo-symbolic moments lend themselves to ridicule. However, there’s a big difference between watching it in your living room and watching it at the Assembly George Square Theatre. Here every viewer’s wry asides become backchat bellowed at Tommy Wiseau’s perpetually strange face. It’s the 21st century’s version of ‘Oh no you didn’t’, with a fittingly modern sense of irony. Even repeat attendees can expect to come away with a new joke beyond the well-known cries of ‘Spoons’, ‘Meanwhile in San Francisco’ and ‘Because you’re a woman!’
As a Fringe show, it isn’t about the movie – it’s about the audience. Word seems to have spread about the cult classic, because the theatre was packed the night I attended with my own group of friends. It’s a fantastic group outing, combining entertainment, drink and throwing spoons with reckless abandon. I’d recommend reading up on traditions before attending; while it’s not quite as complex as The Rocky Horror Picture Show there are a couple of things you’ll want to keep in mind.
Don’t go alone. Don’t go sober. But go.