Director: Lenny Abrahamson
Writer: Emma Donoghue
Cast: Brie Larson, Jacob Tremblay, Sean Bridgers, William H. Macy, Wendy Crewson, Sandy McMaster, Matt Gordon, Amanda Brugel, Joe Pingue, Joan Allen, Zarrin Darnell-Martin, Cas Anvar, Jee-Yun Lee, Randal Edwards, Justin Mader
Synopsis: After five-year-old Jack and his mother escape from the enclosed surroundings that Jack has known his entire life, the boy makes a thrilling discovery.
MPAA Rating: Rated R for language
10 / 10
- Solid script chalked full of surprises and emotional heartache that'll leave you speechless.
- Direction was done well.
- The cinematography that captures the environment and the harsh reality the characters go through on a daily basis.
- Pacing was excellent.
- Brie Larson is excellent in her performance, as was her young co star, Jacob Tremblay.
- All the supporting actors were good.
- Although the film might seem dry to some people, but if you're into great drama, then this is worth sitting through.
An interesting look at a film about survival and hope
Not to be confused with Tommy Wiseau's laughable cult piece, "The Room." This movie that shares an eerily similar title is done with more taste and class than you'd might expect. The story revolves around a young girl (played by Brie Larson), who gets kidnapped by an elderly pervert when she was still young. Locked up in a secluded sound proof room, where no one would ever find her.
Occasionally, the man would bring her food and supplies to survive in the room, while having his way with her sexually whenever it suited his tastes. After being raped by this man constantly, the young girl inevitably gives birth to a baby boy. But due to circumstances, both of them were never allowed to leave the room; hence she had to explain to her son why over time without putting his life in danger.
She goes on to explain to her newborn son, Jack (who's played surprisingly well by young actor, Jacob Tremblay), that the "room" is a planet all to itself. She explains that the reason they can't leave "room" is because everything that exists outside of it is outer space; hence they would die if they ever left. She even tells her son that all the images he's sees on TV are magical stories that come from other planets across the universe. Being so young, Jack buys this story quite easily growing up, as she even has him sleep in the closet, while the sex predator rapes her at night. Although the man is under no obligation to do what she asks, he agrees to stay away from her son, during their stay there.
But after his fifth birthday, she finally tells her son the harsh truth that everything he's ever been told was a lie. Naturally, this upsets the young man to the point of anger, but she begs her son to listen to her one last time, as she may have concocted a plan to get them both out of that situation. What follows from here is a emotional experience unlike anything you've might've seen before.
Granted, you might think that would be the end of the story, but it's not. If anything, that's only the beginning. For you see, the real story isn't about how these two survive during their capture, but really how they both adjust back into society after their escape. How does her family interpret all of this? How are they able to readjust back into society to live out their lives normally if they even can at all? While the mother struggles to deal with PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome), after dealing with such sexual abuse, Jack makes a startling discovery about life outside of the small world he once knew. "Room" is an epic story of survival that'll break your heart, while leaving you gasping for more.
While the film may fly under a lot of people's radar, it's definitely worth a look. Brie Larson gives a command performance as the mother, who struggles to cope with the situation at hand, as her Oscar nomination this year was definitely well deserved. As for Jacob Tremblay, I have to admit I was rather surprised this kid wasn't nominated for an Academy Award this year. Seriously, I haven't been this impressed by a child actor since Quvenzhané Wallis' mesmerizing performance in "Beasts of the Southern Wild." Sadly, he was snubbed out of a well deserved nomination. However, if this kid continues to delivering great performances like this throughout his acting career, then I'm sure he'll get other opportunities down the road. It's just a shame it won't be this year.
Although "Room" may not dominate headlines the same way other box office crap does with "Jurassic World" or "Minions", it offers something that most of those other films lack these days, which is substance and quality. "Room" is arguably one of the most captivating films that I've ever seen, as words alone can't due this film any justice for how emotionally potent it is to watch on the big screen.
© 2016 Steven Escareno
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