Haha, what a story: Tommy Wiseau, already a legend for birthing the hypnotically awful
, is getting double immortalized with this Friday’s release of The Room . It’s a behind-the-two-cameras look at what it took to foist his unique nightmare upon the world, starring James Franco as the writer/director himself. The fact that The Disaster Artist Disaster Artist is drawing the best reviews of virtually all careers involved prompts this week’s gallery of the 24 best movies about making movies (with at least 20 reviews each). Anyway, how is your sex life?
(2008, 82%) Tropic Thunder
With biting satire, plenty of subversive humor, and an unforgettable turn by Robert Downey, Jr., Tropic Thunder is a triumphant comedy you’ll love especially later in the summer.
(2016, 92%) La La Land
La La Land breathes new life into a bygone genre with thrillingly assured direction, powerful performances, and an irresistible excess of heart.
(1992, 98%) The Player
Bitingly cynical without succumbing to bitterness, The Player is one of the all-time great Hollywood satires — and an ensemble-driven highlight of the Altman oeuvre.
(2016, 85%) Hail, Caesar!
Packed with period detail and perfectly cast, Hail, Caesar! finds the Coen brothers delivering an agreeably lightweight love letter to post-war Hollywood.
(1952, 100%) Singin’ in the Rain
Clever, incisive, and funny, Singin’ in the Rain is a masterpiece of the classical Hollywood musical.
(1950, 98%) Sunset Boulevard
Arguably the greatest movie about Hollywood, Billy Wilder’s masterpiece Sunset Boulevard is a tremendously entertaining combination of noir, black comedy, and character study.
(1963, 98%) 8 1/2
Inventive, thought-provoking, and funny, 8 1/2 represents the arguable peak of Federico Fellini’s many towering feats of cinema.
(1997, 93%) Boogie Nights
Grounded in strong characters, bold themes, and subtle storytelling, Boogie Nights is a groundbreaking film both for director P.T. Anderson and star Mark Wahlberg.
(2011, 96%) The Artist
A crowd-pleasing tribute to the magic of silent cinema, The Artist is a clever, joyous film with delightful performances and visual style to spare.
(1999, 81%) Bowfinger
A witty commentary on modern film-making, with enough jokes to keep it entertaining throughout.
(2002, 91%) Adaptation
Dizzyingly original, the loopy, multi-layered Adaptation is both funny and thought-provoking.
(1991, 91%) Barton Fink
Twisty and unsettling, the Coen brothers’ satirical tale of a 1940s playwright struggling with writer’s block is packed with their trademark sense of humor and terrific performances from its cast.
(1995, 86%) Get Shorty
With a perfect cast and a sly twist on the usual Hollywood gangster dynamic, Get Shorty delivers a sharp satire that doubles as an entertaining comedy-thriller in its own right.
(1964, 94%) Contempt
This powerful work of essential cinema joins “meta” with “physique,” casting Brigite Bardot and director Godard’s inspiration Fritz Lang.
(1973, 100%) Day For Night
A sweet counterpoint to Godard’s Contempt, Truffaut’s Day for Night is a congenial tribute to the self-afflicted madness that is moviemaking.
(1994, 92%) Ed Wood
Tim Burton and Johnny Depp team up to fete the life and work of cult hero Ed Wood, with typically strange and wonderful results.
(1998, 95%) Gods and Monsters
Gods and Monsters is a spellbinding, confusing piece of semi-fiction, featuring fine performances; McKellen leads the way, but Redgrave and Fraser don’t lag far behind.
(2003, 91%) Baadasssss!
An entertaining and intriguing tribute to a father from his son.
(2005, 90%) Tristram Shandy: A Cock & Bull Story
Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon add madcap, knowing performances to the mix, and the result is a fun, postmodern romp.
(2001, 83%) Mulholland Drive
David Lynch’s dreamlike and mysterious Mulholland Drive is a twisty neo-noir with an unconventional structure that features a mesmirizing performance from Naomi Watts as a woman on the dark fringes of Hollywood.
(2000, 86%) State and Main
State & Main offers plenty of wit and laughs in its lampoons of the movie industry.
(1980, 89%) The Stunt Man
The Stunt Man is a preposterously entertaining thriller with a clever narrative and Oscar-worthy (nomination, at least!) Peter O’Toole performance.
(1954, 96%) A Star is Born
A Star is Born is a movie of grand scope and intimate moments, featuring Judy Garland’s possibly greatest performance.
(2000, 81%) Shadow of the Vampire
Shadow of the Vampire is frightening, compelling, and funny, and features an excellent performance by Willem Dafoe.