Four Rooms is an anthology (mostly comedy) of four stories each one by a different writer/director (Allison Anders, Alexandre Rockwell, Robert Rodriguez and Quentin Tarantino). Tim Roth stars as Ted The Bellhop, the character that connects the stories together. Each one takes place in a different room of the hotel that Ted works at. It’s New Year’s Eve and everybody is celebrating, but Ted is practically alone and has to rush around the rooms.
Robert Rodriguez does the third section of the movie and it’s called The Misbehavers. Antonio Banderas plays some kind of gangster or tough guy, it’s not very clear. Him and his girlfriend (Tamlyn Tomita), or wife (not very clear again) are bored and want to do something exciting, so Banderas takes charge. He makes Ted take care of their kids while him and the woman go out and see the fireworks and do “other stuff”.
There are two kids, a little girl named Sarah (Lana McKissack) and a little boy Juancho (Danny Verduzco). The boy looks like Banderas and the girl looks like the woman. This leads me to believe that the two adults both are single parents meeting up, because the kids look so different. There are little funny bits sprinkled throughout, but nothing special until the end when you see how it is leading up to the hilarious climax. Everything just erupts all at once right at the moment that Antonio Banderas walks back in. The room is on fire, there is vomit everywhere, the paintings are ruined, a dead hooker is in the bed, there’s a giant syringe plummeting towards his child, the kid is smoking a cigarette and more chaos! Everything comes full circle and all the little things that seemed random before now make perfect sense. Throughout the story they are always complaining about the smell and think that it’s someone’s feet. Turns out that they were smelling a dead body rotting in the bed the whole time. The weird tale is finished with perfect comedic timing.
The acting is good, nothing special from the parents and the kids are really awkward, but I think they’re supposed to be that way. Salma Hayek is in the movie, she just plays a stripper who dances on the TV (it is Santantico Pandemonium from From Dusk Till Dawn?). This section really works because of the fantastic ending.
Quentin Tarantino’s section (the last one) is called The Man From Hollywood. Tarantino stars as a guy named Chester Rush. Bruce Willis appears too, his second time working with Tarantino again after Pulp Fiction.
The Man From Hollywood is based on an old episode of Alfred Hitchcock Presents called “The Man From The South” and it fits perfectly at the end. I actually think that this is the best one, but best does not mean funniest (it’s definitely the best part acting/writing wise). Personally I think it’s funnier overall than any other segment, but the ending of the Rodriguez segment is arguably the funniest part of the movie.
This story can be summarized as: Tarantino plays a big shot movie director named Chester Rush from Hollywood who is staying at the hotel and spending New Years partying with his friends. Ted the Bellhop goes into the penthouse suite, and is talked into refereeing a bet between Chester Rush and his friend Norman (Paul Calderon).
Norman has to light his lighter 10 times in a row, if he wins he gets Chester’s brand new expensive car, but if he loses, his finger gets cut off. Most of the segment is Chester trying to convince Ted to cut off his finger when he loses. Ted finally accepts. When the time comes, the comedic timing is so perfect, and hilarious.
The character played by Bruce Willis (uncredited) spends the majority of the segment fighting with his wife over the phone. A woman from the second story comes back for this one, but she doesn’t do too much.
Overall, Four Rooms is a great movie if you skip the first half.
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