Hello and welcome to the movie blog of author John DeFrank - FilmZ and Guy Sobriquet Malone - Researcher


I finally got to see Room, the only Oscar-nominated film I hadn't seen before Sunday.  Based on the 2010 best-seller by Emma Donoghue, who also wrote the screenplay,Room, as directed by Lenny Abrahamson, is a taut, claustrophobic psychological thriller.  It's a slow burn story of Ma (Brie Larson) and her five-year-old son Jack (newcomer Jacob Tremblay) whose world exists within the confines of a garden shed. 

How did they get there? Who is confining them?  The answers to those and other questions reveal slowly as we adjust to the close confines and strictures of their world.

And "world" it is to Jack, who has known no other.  The ways Ma has rationalized that world to her son, and to herself, are part of the psychological study that makes up the most compelling aspect of Room.  How a child develops in a stunted world; how an abductee deals with the trauma of long-term imprisonment and abuse; the tests and strengths of the human spirit--these are the aspects of the film that draw us in.

The conduits of that magnetism are the two leads.  In one of the most competitive of recent Lead Actress performances, it's difficult to argue with the touching balance of vulnerability and strength that Brie Larson portrays as Ma.  And I don't even know what to say about Jacob Tremblay's Jack.  Never have I seen a child perform so convincingly.  To think that he achieved no Academy recognition when his performance was clearly superior to other children who have received nominations is an indictment of the system.

7.5 out of 10


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