Books · Reviews

The Disaster Artist – Audiobook Review (Spoiler-Free)

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Hey everyone! I hope you’re all doing great πŸ™‚

So you’ve probably heard of the movie The Disaster Artist featuring James Franco, Dave Franco and Seth Rogen by now. It recounts the story of one the worst movies ever made, The Room, and the people working on it. If not, here’s the trailer.

The Room was supposed to be this super dramatic movie about love and betrayal, though it actually became the most insane comedy of all time, which turned it into a cult movie. Everything about it (the acting, directing, writing, etc) is atrocious and the person behind it all, Tommy Wiseau, is the most unbelievable human being to ever walk this Earth. It’s basically Tommy’s delusional mind and mysterious identity that make The Room, as well as The Disaster Artist, such fascinating pieces of art.

But is the latter worth it?


This review is completely spoiler-free.

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synopsis

The Disaster Artist tellsΒ the story of both Greg Sestero, an actor and line-producer (don’t ask) in The Room, and Tommy Wiseau, its writer, director, producer, leading actor, etc etc. It recounts the events prior and during the movie’s production, including how Sestero and Wiseau met under peculiar circumstances, becoming one of the most iconic duos in the history of bad film-making. Watch the book trailer.

 

firstimpressions

I knew Greg Sestero had decided to write a book about his insane experience working on The Room with Tommy Wiseau. Being a HUGE fan of the movie, I’d been meaning to read it for a very long time, but never actually got to it. With the The Disaster Artist movie soon to be released, however, and knowing I would want to watch it, I decided it was time to finally read it.

 

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One wouldn’t be able to tell Sestero was a funny guy from his performance in The Room, but if you’ve watched a couple of his interviews, you’ll kind of get it. Still, he was able to surprise me.

I laughed, a lot. Harder than I thought would be possible.Β  You could tell he was fighting doing it a few times himself, just because of how ridiculous the story had gotten. And when I mean ridiculous, I mean absolutely ridiculous. He couldn’t help the occasional chuckle, though.

I really liked how humble, honest and down-to-earth Sestero is. He tells his story in a very factual manner, never gloating or bringing too much attention to himself. He knows the star of this whole thing is Tommy, and he embraces his secondary, kind of sidekick role beautifully. He admits he’s not a great person at times, and that he’s as much at fault as the person who wronged him. He also owns up to his decisions and their outcome, not blaming anyone else.

His moments with Tommy are hysterical, to say the least. Tommy truly sounds like a cartoon character living in the real world and interacting with him can bring as much joy as it does migraines. It’s very hard to communicate with him, because as Sestero tells it: “Tommy lives on his own planet” and no one else is allowed in. He makes an exception for Sestero, however, and that’s when hilarity ensues.Β 

Sestero’s impressions are spot-on. He can imitate Tommy so well, I felt I was listening to the man himself. And if you know Tommy Wiseau, you’ll know his voice, accent and complete disregard for normal human intonations comprise 80% of his charm. His extreme lack of self-awareness and insane methodologies are the other 20%.

Reading about Sestero and how much he failed at life, but also learned from it, was quite refreshing. Despite everything he went through, all the “no”s he got throughout his career, the discouragement he encountered (even from his own mother), he persevered and is now quite famous – if, however, for some very different reasons.

During his reading, he was able to distance himself from the “actor” and really come off as this all-American kid anyone can somehow relate to. His friendship with Tommy is both inconceivable and extremely endearing, going so far as to compare it to “two superhero rivals” – which is surprisingly accurate. It’s fascinating to see how much both influenced each other’s lives and how The Room’s infamous glory affected them.

 

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If you’ve seen The Room, you’ll know no one in that movie is a particularly gifted actor. Greg Sestero is no exception. He’s not a particularly gifted narrator, either. So while I did like his familiar voice to transport me back to The Room, I don’t think he’s the best person for the job.

The way he reads the quotes at the beginning of each chapter makes it a confusing and awkward transition. He also fails to deliver the punchlines (which are actually quite clever), rendering them absolutely humorless. Blink, and you’ll miss them entirely.

He’s not a writer either, which explains Tom Bissell, a journalist, being credited in the making of this. Still, I don’t think he was sufficient to make The Disaster Artist a solid piece of literature. It’s not that it’s too badly written, but it does have its instances of purple prose.

Also, the going back and forth between past and future did break my focus a bit. I’d be wholly invested in what I was reading, only to be thrown back into some tedious flashback. This was supposed to be about the making of The Room, but Greg and Tommy’s (auto)biographies were thrown in for good measure. Both of which could have been handled better.

Tommy and Greg’s tale is a hilarious one, but also incredibly sad. Something I was not really prepared for and therefore, struggled to enjoy.

I did love the first part of this audiobook, but the second one became pretty gloomy, pretty fast. It was also a bit boring, to be perfectly honest. I do think some scenes were necessary to explain why Tommy and Greg acted a certain way and, of course, to set the mood for the rest of the story. But others felt more like fillers than anything else. Greg’s story was particularly uninteresting and it didn’t add much to his personality.

By the end, I felt as exhausted and frustrated as Greg himself probably felt back then. Listening to Tommy’s voice drone on in my ear (literally) and leech my energy out was not super fun, and I felt this look into his earlier life, in particular, made the whole thing loose some of its magic. It also didn’t bring any sort of conclusion to many of the questions aroused during the story; only more speculation.

 

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While I was truly excited to read this, it fell short of my expectations. I loved the first half of The Disaster Artist: it was hilarious, fun, charming, clever, and made me remember why I was such a big fan of The Room in the first place. It made me laugh joyfully at every turn. The second half, however, was marred by this gloomy atmosphere that was neither complimentary nor truly necessary, at times.

Although I respect Sestero’s decision to include it in lieu of explanation to some of Wiseau’s most bizarre behaviors, I desperately wanted to read more about the fun parts and less about the depressing ones. I also think there was a lot that could have been taken out without really affecting the story line.

Maybe the book is better, but I think the audiobook will provide a more faithful experience. Sestero is a pleasure to listen to (for the most part) and is awesome at impressions, including his French-speaking mother, which made this a priceless read. I just wish he was equally gifted at storytelling.

Overall, I recommend this one if you’re a fan or curious about what this crazy phenomenon is about. It would also be helpful, but not mandatory, to watch The Room first because, while Sestero does explain a lot of what is going on, I think anyone would still feel pretty clueless going in with no prior knowledge.

Story & Plot:Β 3halfchoco-

Writing & Style:Β 3halfchoco-

Narration:Β 3halfchoco-

Pacing:Β 3choco

Enjoyment:Β 3halfchoco-

Final Rating:

3halfchoco-

***

Get The Disaster Artist from BookDepository, Amazon and B&N!

To know more about it, check out the official website.

***

Thank you so much for reading and until next time!

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Do you plan to read The Disaster Artist or watch The Room? Share your thoughts below! ヽ(o^―^o)οΎ‰

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46 thoughts on “The Disaster Artist – Audiobook Review (Spoiler-Free)

    1. Hahaha what a strange coincidence indeed! I LOVE The Room so my expectations might have been a bit too high for this one. I really hope you enjoy it, though. It’s certainly a treat for the fans to find out more about the movie and its participants πŸ™‚ I just wish the second half hadn’t been handled the way it was.
      Thank you so much for your comment! ^^

      Like

  1. I am not a huge fan of comedies, I have to be honest about that, but the trailer for the movie seriously made me laugh. After reading your review for this I don’t think this is a book for me, as it’s too far off my usual reads, but I do actually think that I might go and check out the movie. Just became pretty curious for that one. As always this was another great post! But that really is no surprise whatsoever 😊

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah, like I said, this was mainly written for the fans so anyone else might find it way too weird hahaha
      I would definitely recommend you check out the movie first (both The Disaster Artist and The Room, if you feel like it – I’ll warn you, though, the latter is absolutely insane). If you like them, then maybe read the book afterwards πŸ™‚
      Thank you so much for stopping by! Your compliments always make my day 😊 ❀
      Also, I'll look forward to a review for the movie posted on your blog sometime! I think it comes out in December… So stay tuned πŸ˜‰

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I’ve actually never heard of this movie or the book. Fascinating premise. I’m sorry that it did fall a little short of your expectations though. I love audiobooks and I definitely feel like there are some books that are better on audio, though it’s rare.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You should give it a go sometime, Krysti! It’s hilarious hahaha
      Oh yeah, I think this is one of those cases, though I wish it had been ever better. Maybe because it’s not really a story but an (auto)biography of sorts, so it’s very personal. Having the author himself retelling his experience was really interesting, but not at all what I was expecting.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Another awesome review! I’ve actually never heard of this book or movie. I’m not sure if I like humorous books. I haven’t found one that I like yet. Anyway, too bad it wasn’t what you expected. Thank you for sharing! πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much! Oh, yeah, I wouldn’t dive into this one unless you really enjoy comedy. It’s quite sad too, but the humor is definitely much more abundant.
      Well, I had high hopes for it so I was bound to be disappointed XD Hopefully, the movie’s better πŸ™‚
      Thank you for reading! ❀

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I *literally* just saw the trailer!! It made me laugh so hard!! The movie is accidentally hilarious! I didn’t know they’d made a book about it. hehehe I’m glad this was so funny and you are spot on about Tommy Wiseau- he’s in a whole league of his own when it comes to acting (I just have to think about “I did not hit her I did not- oh hi Mark”). haha I can’t say it surprises me that he’s not a great narrator either!! Shame it had a gloomy atmosphere in the second half. And it’s not really the kind of book for purple prose. But I’m glad it was good overall! Great review!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hahaha, I know!! I think it’ll be glorious XD
      Tommy… Sigh, I have no idea how to classify that man LOL But I did enjoy The Room a lot. Nothing really compares to it!
      Oh, Tommy’s not the narrator for the book, it’s Greg Sestero (who played Mark). I hope that clarifies it! But yeah, it was a pretty awesome read for the most part, so it was hard for me to rate it hahaha
      Thank you so much! ❀

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Duuuude, I’m soooo surprised there’s actually someone out there that knows about The Room hahahahaha When my friend initially told me about it, I didn’t believe the whole “worst movie of all time” thing until I watched all of those famous scenes. Holy sh*t. Hahahahahah I knew about the book though, but I didn’t think anyone would go on to read it (or listen to it in your case xD) I’m really curious to see how the movie is going to do this though. It’ll have to be quite clever in order to succeed.. Great review though, definitely enlightened me on its content. πŸ˜€

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hahaha! Hi… That’s me… The weird person who likes the weird movie πŸ˜€
      And my thoughts exactly! I was like “ugh, why’re you making me watch this if it’s so crappy?” and then my boyfriend and our friends were like “Just… watch it, okay?” I think they’ve regretted it since then, because every time someone asks what movie we want to watch, I always cry out “The Room!!” and they all groan LOL
      Oh I had to. This sounded too good to be true. And I was genuinely curious to see what had possessed this man to make this terrible movie, and how he’d convinced all these people to join him. It felt a bit like a cult, honestly hahaha
      I’m hopeful James Franco will do a good job, and Seth Rogen is always such joy to watch. It’ll be nice to see how the brotherly dynamic between the Francos will play out on screen and mirror Tommy and Greg’s own relationship. But I totally agree, it’ll be quite tricky to get it right.
      Thank you so much, Lashaan! ^^ I’m glad my review was educational hahaha

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I have yet to see The Room all the way through, but from the scenes I’ve watched, I just love how weird it is haha! I even quote from the film sometimes and nobody I’ve talked to knows what I’m talking about πŸ˜‚Β 
    The Disaster Artist has been on my To Be Read list for a while. I might try the audiobook version just to hear Sestero’s impressions!
    Great review!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh you totally have to! You’ll laugh your butt off, I guarantee hahaha
      I have a group of friends who are familiar with it so it’s tons of fun when we quote the movie during a conversation and everyone else just stares like we’ve gone insane xD
      I think the audiobook’s the way to go, to be honest. It just brings so much more to the whole experience. But definitely watch the movie first, otherwise you might be a bit confused.
      Thank you so much! ❀ Also, are you planning to watch the movie with James Franco?

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Hahaha there are two movies to consider here: the original one (The Room) and the one about the making of the original (The Disaster Artist). The first is indeed super weird and hilarious, and I’m sure the second one will be as well. I have high hopes for it!
      I would definitely recommend reading the book after watching The Room but I don’t think it matters much whether you read it before or after The Disaster Artist.
      I’m glad it intrigued you, Diana! Let me know what you think if you decide to give it a go πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  7. I love The Room!! But I didn’t know about this audiobook, or even that they are making a movie about it (somehow I completely missed that). I find it hard to imagine the new movie could be as funny as the original thing though…

    I don’t think I’m quite a big enough fan to give this audiobook a try, but I enjoyed reading your review! It’s interesting it had a quite depressing side to it, I wouldn’t have expected that… but if it delves into their private lives too I can see how that might happen.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yay I’m so glad you do!! Best movie ever, am I right? XD
      I’ve seen The Disaster Artist everywhere lately so it’ll be hard to miss in a few months. The audiobook was not as well known, though.
      Yeah I guess not, especially because the original one wasn’t intended to be a comedy… While this one is. So it’ll be a different kind of experience.
      It does delve waaayy deep into their lives. And I was not really a fan at times. Certain parts were super interesting, though.
      I hope you enjoy the movie/book, if you decide to check them out! 😊

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yeah it’s awesome! Best worst movie ever πŸ™‚
        I probably will watch this new movie, since I’m intrigued. I hope it’s good! As you said though, it’s going to be a different kind of experience due to the intentional humour, so I’ll try not to compare it too much to the unintentional hilarity of The Room!

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Me too! I’ll even try to convince my friends to dress up as the characters and take lots of plastic spoons, a football and a plush pug with us hahaha
          I know tons of people will go watch it for the Franco brothers and Seth Rogen, but I hope to find some hardcore The Room fans there too πŸ˜‚

          Liked by 1 person

  8. Oh my god The Room. What a terrible movie. I love it so much LOL. I actually haven’t heard of The Disaster Artist, so this book and the movie interest me quite a lot. Also, if you like the movie, I highly recommend you watch Chris Stuckmann’s hilarocity review of it. He basically points out how bad the movie is and how fun it is to watch because of how bad it is haha. I’ve only tried one audiobook so far, so I might have to add this one on my list, just because I’m so curious to hear the story behind The Room! Great review, Sophie!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hahahaha! It’s EPIC πŸ˜‚
      Oh I know his channel! He has the best reviews ever πŸ˜„
      I think you should definitely read/listen to The Disaster Artist and later watch the movie when it comes out. It’s very… Enlightening to say the least XD Not always in a good way, though hahaha (I could have done without knowing certain things about Wiseau)
      Thank you so much, Azia!! ❀️ I hope you love it as much as The Room πŸ˜‚

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Chris Stuckmann is my go to guy for movie reviews. He always has great opinions. You can really tell he knows film.
        And I’ll definitely be checking this book/movie out. I’m eager to be “enlightened” πŸ˜‚ Hope I love it as much as The Room, too LOL

        Liked by 1 person

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