Sarah’s review published on Letterboxd:
Did the San Francisco Tourism Bureau finance the opening credit sequence? Why is a grown couple hanging out with a 14-year-old rando? Are they done having sex yet? Why is there a decorative shower in their bedroom? Do the gods know there’s a mortal named Mark with hair that luscious? Why is he surprised Lisa’s coming onto him when she called him “baby” over the phone earlier? Was the camera supposed to go out of focus? Wait, why are they kissing now? What happened between kissing her and Mark telling her he wasn't going to do it? Are they seriously going to have sex on a hard-ass, uncarpeted, cramped spiral staircase? Are they done having sex yet? Wait, have they started having sex yet or are they just pawing each other like tender monkeys? Why did he say “we can’t do this anymore,” implying that it’s been going on for a while, but before they started pawing each other, his surprise at her forwardness suggested this might be the first time Lisa’s really come onto him, but before that their rapport on the phone was so casual and dismissive of Johnny it seemed like they already had something on the side? How could the florist not immediately realize that was Johnny, when clearly no one else in the known world looks like Johnny? Why doesn't Denny have any boundaries? Why do Johnny and Lisa tolerate an adolescent horny toad telling Lisa he wants to kiss her and following her into her bedroom? Is she saying she lost her friends because the computer business is too competitive, or was the thing about the computer business a total non sequitur? Is she poisoning Johnny? How long are they going to have sex this time? Was this sex scene supposed to bring anything new or different to the proceedings that the first sex scene like ten minutes ago didn't already do? Why does she bother trying to sabotage Johnny’s image in her mother’s eyes and even go so far as to get him drunk to provide a veneer of credibility to her story about how "he got drunk and hit me" when her mom obviously only cares about his career prospects and completely ignores the only significant part of her daughter’s allegations? Who are these people? Are we supposed to know who they are? Is "chocolate is a symbol of love" so good a line it really bears repeating twice? Why are they playing demented elf music as a backdrop for the mystery couple’s rendezvous? And why are they fucking in Johnny and Lisa’s apartment? Again with Denny already? Is "How many people come in and out of this apartment every day?" the only sensible question that will be posed in this entire movie? Wait, why is Lisa talking up the virtues of Johnny now? Doesn't she remember she hates him? Why is Lisa so blasé about her apartment’s security? What were any of those sequences meant to demonstrate? Why is everyone going up to the roof? I mean almost literally everyone in this movie? Why is any of this happening? Wait, is he taking drugs or selling them? Why is she freaking out about him doing drugs when what was established was that he was selling them because he needed the money? And why is Lisa’s mom getting so emotionally invested in the fuckery of a teenaged gadfly stalking her daughter, whose existence she was probably not even aware of five minutes earlier? Did anyone call the cops? What happened to the guy with the gun? Are they on top of their own building or where are they? Does Mark always sleep with hazardous sexy mood candles next to his highly flammable bed? Is it normal to angrily argue with invisible interlocuters about how you don’t abuse your girlfriend? What was the part of that story that was so funny to Johnny? The part where the woman was cheating on someone with 12 other guys? Or the part where she got the crap beat out of her by one of them? Because they’re both pretty funny, but which was the part that tickled Johnny so? Why are Mark, Johnny, and Denny the only people who use the football field-sized rooftop with a stunning view of the city? Do they live in the same apartment complex as Barton Fink? Why does everyone talk so inappropriately about Johnny’s fiancée to Johnny’s face? Where did Johnny develop such a zenlike attitude towards people suggesting his fiancée might be unfaithful to him and others flat out admitting that they’re in love with her? Wouldn't a more reasonable thing to tell Denny be that he’s very young and we all have feelings like that sometimes, but he has to try to move on because Lisa and Johnny are together? Wait, Mark lives in the building too? Wait, there’s someone in this movie who actually cares a little bit about the allegation that Lisa’s been abused by her boyfriend, even if it is a lie? So Lisa’s a sociopath, right? Why is Lisa’s friend indignant about Lisa’s behavior one second but then cheerfully assuring her she won’t reveal her secrets in the next? Why is there a photo of a spoon in the background? Does Johnny respond to anything appropriately? Why is she going to bed at 4 o’clock in the afternoon? What note is this scene supposed to be ending on? Didn't she just tell him she might not want to marry him and then he shoved her down on the sofa a couple times but now they’re okay again? Where is this scene taking place? Does ANYONE else live in San Francisco in the universe of the film? Anyone else? Why did Mark push the douche-y underwear guy down? Wait, they’re LEAVING the apartment? Didn't they just arrive? Or were they there already? And if they were there already, shouldn't they have known Johnny was there? Why does Johnny need to record evidence of Lisa being unfaithful? Shouldn't he have just said, “Hi, you know how you just openly admitted to your mother that you don’t love me and you’re cheating on me? That thing you just said literally 30 seconds ago? Well, surely you've gathered by how I’m referencing the aforementioned that I am, indeed, aware of it, and I have caught you, and now it is time to address it”? Wouldn't that have been a lot easier? And even if he didn't reveal himself right now, couldn't he just wait until the next time Lisa’s with her mother, because she’ll inevitably start talking about her infidelity because she clearly has no discretion whatsoever? Oh, so there’s an eighth person in San Francisco? Why is Tommy mad that his psychologist friend wants to play psychologist with him when two minutes earlier he was asking his psychologist friend for psychologist tips? Does anyone work in this movie? Does time matter in this movie? Why is Denny sitting on the floor? Does Denny just wait outside their door like an abandoned puppy? Why did they feel the need to mention that Lisa and Johnny hadn't had sex in a while? Shouldn't it have been obvious they hadn't had sex, based on the movie’s philosophy of documenting sex occurrences in as close to real time and frequency as possible? When Mark has the meltdown saying he wants to kill himself, why does the psychologist only latch onto the fact that Mark’s smoking pot? How many composite girlfriends did the actor playing Mark conjure when he delivered the line, "She’s a manipulative BITCH!" Are they still getting married? Why is someone perennially carrying around a football in this movie? Who decided impromptu wedding digs football was a scene that needed to happen? Also, why are they still getting married? Why does Lisa keep saying she’s only going to do what she wants to do now and what she wants to do is not marry Johnny, but she keeps not breaking up with him? And didn't she just shoo Denny away in the last scene by saying she needed to talk to Johnny? Was anything supposed to have come of that? Why have only two things happened in this movie so far (a, Lisa and Mark started fucking for maybe or maybe not the first time, and b, Johnny discovers she’s cheating)? Wait, they weren't getting married that day? Was that just a tux fitting? Is it normal for the party of groomsmen to all get together at one of their houses in their fancy digs at an undetermined date before the wedding? Did they just decide to wear tuxes that day? Why are they leaving what I presume is the titular room? Why does the film start leaving the universe of the room so often at such a late point in its runtime? If the movie is 99% conversation about the same thing, and the conversations are prompted by nothing and result in nothing, and it almost never matters who’s talking to whom as long as either Lisa, Mark, or Johnny is present, and it’s been established that Johnny and Lisa’s apartment is the wayside rest of northern California, and none of the characters has a single outside obligation, and anyone could conceivably be in the room at any time, for any reason, why leave the room? Ever? How did the movie go for like an entire half hour without another gauzy sex scene scored to the sweet bar chimes of 90s R&B grooves? Are we supposed to have any idea whatsoever of the basic timeline this movie has followed? Has it been four days? Has it been four months? Isn't it strange that Mark’s bed has exactly the same enormous pillar candle next to it and on the same side as Johnny and Lisa’s bed? Oh, are they still in San Francisco? Oh, are they playing football again? Why are they playing in a park? Are they allowed to hang out at places that aren't the rooftop? And why don’t they put on their tuxes again while they’re at it? I mean, you only live once, right? I don’t suppose the editor noticed that Johnny and Mark asked each other how it was going at least twice during the same friendly (if non-tuxedoed, non-rooftop-staged) game of football? Why did Lisa chide Mark to put his shirt on faster so she could open the door, but then she told whoever it was to open the door anyway when Mark was still clearly in a state of undress? What is this party they keep talking about and do they just keep evoking it every now and then because it’s actually going to happen, or is it some weird continuity error? Why does Lisa’s friend vacillate between thinking Lisa’s manipulation is fertile grounds for sisterly bonding and thinking it’s shameful? Oh, are they still in San Francisco? Why does the script ever employ temporal references like "tomorrow" when clearly time is meaningless in this film? Why are there establishing shots when there’s nothing to establish? Where are Johnny and Mark returning from? Is it their run from a few scenes back? Was the first run the same as the other run a few scenes before that? Why does the scene of them returning exist if they’re not going to show them going inside, nor what transpired just before? Is it giving the audience too much credit to assume they’ll figure out that Johnny and Mark eventually returned home from being somewhere without actually showing them returning? Is the party Godot? How long has Lisa been preparing for it? How much sweeping will be enough sweeping? Is she endlessly sweeping the floor so that after and/or before the party, Lisa can have sex with Johnny and/or Mark on a perfectly spotless floor as those sexy bar chimes slice through the scene again, and the floor is so clean they don’t get a single dust particle on them? Why is Johnny drinking? Wasn't there that pivotal scene earlier where they established that he doesn't drink? Oh, are they still in San Francisco? Oh, is the party still going on? Is it any accident that the titular room is red like the blood which endorses the checks of all our frivolous passions? Is the thing Lisa says she has to show Mark her vagina? Don’t Lisa and Mark think their absence might be noticed considering there are only like eight people at the party? Who’s the guy who’s confronting them right now? Have we seen him even a single time prior to this? Is he the psychologist? Is he with the girlfriend of Lisa who sometimes cares that Lisa is a shitbag? Why did Ken tell him to leave his stupid comments in his pocket? Is that where people in San Francisco leave their comments? No seriously, who in Jesus’s name is this guy? She’s pregnant? Oh, she’s not pregnant? Easy come, easy go? Why are her friends so sad about Lisa’s behavior breaking up their group of friends when their group of friends is clearly not worth saving? Is Lisa’s friend back to being morally outraged, or is she going to giggle and act like a conniving girlfriend the next time she catches Lisa fooling around and swear to keep her secret? Oh, are they still in San Francisco? Wait, why is Lisa OPENLY KISSING AND GROPING Mark at the party and where did all these other people come from? I thought there were only a dozen people in San Francisco, tops? Remember when Johnny was trying to record evidence of Lisa doing something wrong? Why does Denny exist? Is the prone artist’s dummy a terrible foreshadowing of things to come? What percentage of the film’s budget was blown on candles? Oh, something DID come of the secret recording? Isn't the need for a recording completely undercut by the scores of people who have seen Lisa and Mark together, or to whom she has confessed her affair, and also by the fact that half an hour earlier in the film Johnny walked in on Lisa and Mark groping one another? Will Tommy Wiseau’s tears cure cancer? Did Johnny just dry hump that dress to completion? Rest in peace? Remember when Denny had a drug problem? Whatever happened with that? Was The Room meant to be anything else besides a long and cathartic indictment of one or more of Tommy Wiseau’s ex-girlfriends?
TL;DR RECAP OF MY MOST PRESSING QUESTIONS
1. Why does the film start leaving the universe of the room so often at such a late point in its runtime? If the movie is 99% conversation about the same thing, and the conversations are prompted by nothing and result in nothing, and it almost never matters who’s talking to whom as long as either Lisa, Mark, or Johnny is present, and it’s been established that Johnny and Lisa’s apartment is the wayside rest of northern California, and none of the characters has a single outside obligation, and anyone could conceivably be in the room at any time, for any reason, why leave the room? Ever?
2. Is it any accident that the room is deep red like the blood which endorses the checks of all our frivolous passions?
3. Was The Room meant to be anything else besides a long and cathartic indictment of one or more of Tommy Wiseau’s ex-girlfriends?