Monday, 25 April 2016

Based on Emma Donoghue’s novel, itself inspired by the Josef Fritzl case, Room doesn’t have the most cheery of concepts – Larson plays Joy “Ma” Newsome, who was abducted at seventeen and now lives in a squalid shed as a sex slave to Old Nick (Sean Bridgers). But the film rightfully doesn’t linger too long on Nick’s abuse of Joy. Instead it’s told from the perspective of Jack (Tremblay), Joy’s son. Jack believes that their home, ‘Room’, is all there is. And then one day, Joy decides it’s time to tell Jack the truth about ‘The World’.

It’s not too much of a spoiler (hey, it’s on the poster) to reveal that, at some point in the film, Joy and Jack escape Room – and the sequence in which they do is knuckle-chewingly tense. Life in The World isn’t easy, though, as Jack finds himself overwhelmed by the onslaught of new people and places.

The emotional ups and downs are numerous, yet perfectly handled by Donoghue’s touching script and Lenny Abrahamson’s sensitive direction. The performances are flawless, too; while Larson’s Oscar was well deserved, Room is Jack’s story, and Jacob Tremblay is that rare thing – a child actor who convinces with a full range of emotions and hits all the right notes.


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