When you feature a child character in a novel that goes through some pretty rough times. Doing a faithful adaptation to the screen has got to be a very difficult task. In the book Room written by Emma Donoghue (who also wrote the screenplay) the main character of it is very young and goes through a lot of emotional and physical trauma.
It’s also told from that child’s perspective and after I finished reading it. I though that this would make a great movie, but there’s no way they could find a child actor that young who can go through such raw emotions as the kid in the book does. Well after watching this adaptation from director Lenny Abrahamson. I no longer have any doubts. This is a very beautiful, and wonderful moving story about the trails and sacrifices a mother will go through for her child. Featuring a wonderful cast by Brie Larson and Jacob Tremblay as the mother and son. Room is a big Oscar contender this year.
When we meet our main character Jack (Tremblay). He has just turned 5 and we see that he lives in a very small room with his mom(Larson). Now when I say small, I mean small. Bed, Bathtub, toilet, kitchen, and TV area are all in one space. Since this is the only world Jack has ever known he never questions what’s outside of room. He was told by his mother that there is room and outside of room there is space, and nothing else. He has no idea that his mother is being held prisoner or that his father (Sean Bridgers) is the one who is keeping her held captive. In order to protect her son from this awful truth. The mother invents many tall tales to make him feel safe. Think of the parents in Dogtooth (2009), but instead of manipulating their kids. They told them lies to truly protect them. Do you think a five year old could handle knowing that him and his mother are being held captive. I’m pretty sure that kid would grow up with a lot of issues later on in life. After many years of living in Room. The mother decides to tell Jack the truth about the world and to have him help get them out.
What makes both the novel and the movie special is that it is so much more then just a story about abduction. What I have described so far is just the basic premise. It goes into much deeper detail about family and what we will do for the people we love. As mentioned early, the casting is amazing. I have only seen Brie Larson in mainly comedy roles such as Scott Pilgrim Vs The World and United States of Tara. Her role as Ma is incredible. I felt the same levels of frustration, anger and joy as I did when I read the book. Jacob Tremblay as Jack is on my list for best actor this year(or at least a nomination) Having that type of maturity to take on a role like this and then having the skill to pull it off and make it believable is an amazing thing. The only other movie I have seen from director Lenny Abrahamson was the 2014 comedy Frank. Which featured Domhnall Gleeson and Michael Fassbender wearing a giant plastic head. The movie was considered a cult hit by many film fans, but a lot of that movie’s humor was lost on me. With Room, there was not one wasted emotion. He knew when scenes needed to be suspenseful or when they needed to be light , and he knew how to have his actors bring these great characters to life.