ROOM – Review


Room is an adaptation of Emma Donoghue’s bestseller of the same name. In it we are asked to wonder, what is reality? Room is based on true life situations that we see on the news all the time. What is at first a horror story quickly becomes a tale of discovery and enlightenment.

Both highly suspenseful and deeply emotional, ROOM is a unique and touching exploration of the boundless love between a mother and her child. After 5-year-old Jack (Jacob Tremblay) and his Ma (Brie Larson) escape from the enclosed surroundings that Jack has known his entire life, the boy makes a thrilling discovery: the outside world. As he experiences all the joy, excitement, and fear that this new adventure brings, he holds tight to the one thing that matters most of all–his special bond with his loving and devoted Ma. ~ A24 Films

Ma has been imprisoned for seven years –since her abduction – by a man she calls Old Nick. Her son by him is now 5, and has never been outside of a tiny single room that is their world and prison. Jack doesn’t know the difference and has made Room his place of wonder and magic. Ma doesn’t tell him what the real world is like and the bleak, hopeless look on her face is all that’s needed to explain why.

Brie Larson and Jacob Tremblay star in "Room." (Ruth Hurl/Element Pictures)

The first half of Room is terrifying. You spend every second on the edge of your seat, shocked by the reality of their situation and the things they must do to survive. However, the second half of the movie plays out very differently. It’s a beautiful drama, filled with wonder and excitement, as well as giving us a look at the emotional fallout associated with such a horrible experience. Room is hands down the best movie I’ve seen in at least the last 5 years. With so many emotional layers to the story it will transform you in its two hour runtime.

With such a heavy yet delicate story based primarily around two characters, the casting was one of the most important parts of pulling off Room. Brie Larson is stunning – showing incredible range from nuanced, sideways looks to screaming in rage and terror – she handles every scene with expertise. The stand out performance, however, goes to 8 year old Jacob Tremblay. He has an incredible ability to become Jack, looking at the world through wide eyes with wonder and curiosity – or terror and apprehension. His commitment is astounding, rivaling the performances of actors two and three times his age. He is completely believable, and steals every scene.

For those who haven’t read the book or seen the film, I won’t say another word about it other than: See Room. It will win awards this season and win your heart.

5 out of 5

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