One thing that comes to mind after watching Lenny Abrahamson’s Room, is how rare it is to see this particular subject matter explored without gratuitous violence or some deep look into the psyche of a person who has been held captive for years. There was something beautiful about seeing two people emerge from the darkness and learning to be human again.
Based on the novel of the same name by Emma Donoghue, Room tells the story of a woman (Brie Larson) who has been held captive for years in a small shed with her five year old son (Jacob Tremblay), and their journey after finally gaining freedom. Like the novel, the film tells a harrowing story from the innocent perspective of the young boy, Jack, who is finally able to explore the world for the first time.
A story this intimate requires actors that you can invest in will your full heart, and the impressive performances by leads Brie Larson and Jacob Tremblay will leave you completely engrossed. It’s no wonder that Larson is being touted as a frontrunner to take home the Oscar this year. Every look, line and movement from Larson is masterful, particularly when she’s coming face to face to her mother, played by the extraordinary Joan Allen.
At such a young age, Tremblay has managed to earn the adoration of his acting peers and praise from critics, who are no doubt confused as to why Tremblay wasn’t nominated for an Oscar. But there’s plenty of time for that in this young star’s bright future. There was nothing easy about the role of Jack. It’s complex and mature, but Tremblay pulls it off with such ease.
Room may make some audiences weary given the heavy topics involved, but there’s beauty to be found in the resilience of humans, and the different paths people take to move on. I felt hopeful in the end for the characters I came to worry and fret about, and you will too.
Image: Roadshow Films