“The Room” – Awful or awfully good?

If you haven’t checked out this movie, please do. I believe that this movie completely destroys Roger Ebert’s argument that a film must be judged entirely based on what it shows. This movie subverts Ebert’s axiom because, depending on the filmmaker’s intention, “The Room” is either one of the greatest movies ever made or one of the worst. It is either fascinating, or entirely unwatchable.

Watching “The Room” is like watching every romantic drama combined into a singular, amorphous, plastic blob. This was either done intentionally, or it is the result of a profound lack of filmmaking skill. From the playful pillow fight, to the cardboard-cutout drama of the central love triangle, “The Room” seems assembled and distilled from every romantic drama that has come before. It is as though someone set out to create a movie without breathing life into it: A profoundly characterless spool of celluloid.

If this was intentional, “The Room” tears at the foundations of cinema, exposing the machinery of movies as lifeless and stillborn and championing the auteur. It is a movie that unfolds according to the cold rhythms of raw syntax without meaning, visuals without vision. Godard emerges as god-like.

It this was unintentional, “The Room” is bad, perhaps the worst. But judgment here is suspended because the key criterion, that of the filmmaker’s intention, remains hidden. Ebert is unable to judge this film because he refuses to step outside of the screen.

Check it out!