For the Grand Finale, let me introduce you to someone so awesome, so mind-bogglingly bonkers, he should win an award for just existing. Producer, writer, director, actor, man of mystery, Korean leather jacket importer and all-round font of amazement, this guy is so over-the-top unusual, you want to shake his hand and say "Thank you, Tommy! THANK YOU!". Sometimes, someone tries so hard that not only do they fail on an epic scale, but it is so, so epic, it reverses the laws of reality and becomes one of the greatest achievements in the history of mankind. You may not even have heard of this man but there can be no one else in the final spot of this list because, my friends, I have saved the best for last. If you have not encountered him already, may I introduce...
Tommy Wiseau - The Room
If you haven't heard of or seen The Room, shame on you. You must seek it out at all costs. Nothing quite prepares you for utter brilliance of it; it's been called "the Citizen Kane of bad movies", an honour previously bestowed upon Plan 9 From Outer Space. It has become a major cult hit, with its Director/Writer/Producer/Executive Producer/Star Tommy Wiseau turning up at screenings to give Q+A sessions at midnight screenings, it has played once a month in one prestigious New York venue for nearly 5 straight years, it has replaced The Rocky Horror Picture Show in the audience participation stakes. Its fans form lines around the block to see endless shots of Tommy's ass during sex scenes with an uncomfortable-looking young actress way out of his league and his remarkably schizophrenic performance. He makes Christopher Fuckin' Walken look like Clive Owen. People shout his lines back at him whenever he's on the screen and even through plastic forks because, for some reason, the apartment in which the film takes place is decorated with pictures of cutlery. Weirder still, if you go to a screening, you'll need a football (of the American sort - a rugby ball to the rest of us). Why? Because for no apparent reason, the male characters like to dress in tuxedos and toss the pigskin in alleyways for absolutely no frickin' reason! But the movie's crowning glory is Wiseau, a man who prefers to be called American but who possesses a mysterious Trans-European accent. People have speculated that he's taking the piss, got something wrong with him, is insane, from another planet or possibly a Vampire (and indeed, he's playing one in his next movie). Whatever. To me, he'll always be a genius, albeit an accidental one (and they're usually the best kind). Now genius is a pretty strong word so let me justify my assertion by inviting you to watch what happens when the love of his life turns out to be a manipulative sociopath who spreads a false rumor that he hit her. Just watch this, watch the guy's reaction;
Yeah. And did you catch his reaction to Mark's story about that girl who wound up in hospital? "Ha, ha, ha. What a story, Mark!". And what about Mark's misogynistic ramble about whether women are too smart, stupid or evil? What is this? Antichrist II? Well, it seems to Tommy, playing Johnny, that Mark's an expert. I mean, what the fuck? WHAT THE FUCK? And why is the roof shot on Greenscreen? Don't they have roofs in The States? Please American friends, explain this to me. Does Hollywood have to fake rooftop scenes due to legal restrictions since 9/11? If so, they do it a hell of a lot more convincingly than is presented in The Room.
Anyway, Wiseau's performance is pure gold... But for all the wrong reasons. Just look at what happens when he goes to buy some flowers;
Notice the "Hi Doggy"? Every single scene includes the line "Oh hi, Mark" or "Oh hi, Doggy", "Oh hi, Lisa", Oh hi, Johnny", "Oh hi insert name here". I'm sorry but if you have seen or even heard of the film, you probably know all this already.
Since it's release, Wiseau has gone on record saying that it was all deliberate. Some of the cast members have countered by claiming that he meant it to be a serious drama. Uh... lets not get into that, we're here to discuss his performance. So why is it the most ludicrous movie performance of all time? Because its like his character has no awareness of the fictional world around him; one minute he's protesting Lisa's accusations "I did not hit huuurrrr! I did naaaarrrrt", the next, he's singing he praises. The thing is, he actually wrote and directed this thing so there should be some kind of consistency there, it's not like he was reading from a script someone else wrote. In some ways, he's a marvelously eccentric performer and I'm actually really looking forward to his vampire movie and he's a great sport at those screenings (marred slightly by his claims it was a all on purpose, though that would explain a lot). Wiseau's even spoofed his own image on comedy shows and very funny little short called The House that Dripped Blood on Alex and he's so downright alien I wish someone would cast him as a Doctor Who villain. He's like Christopher Walken and Klaus Kinski somehow had an illegitimate lovechild. I will leave you with a clip from the most famous scene from the movie. I suggest you see it AT ALL COSTS.