Director Lenny Abrahamson’s “Room” (based on Emma Donoghue’s novel) is a triumph due primarily to phenomenal acting by Brie Larson and Jacob Tremblay; highlighting a mother and her five-year-old son confined to a 10-by-10 “room”; exhibiting a normalcy totally anathema to their circumstances; prodigious directing eliminates claustrophobia.
“Ma” (Larson), abducted at seventeen, has spent seven years, closeted, perpetually violated by “Old Nick” (Sean Bridgers); astoundingly she has protected her son “Jack” (Tremblay) from the eyes and clutches of his maniacal pedigree. Their days spent cooking, watching television, playing games brilliantly exhibit overwhelming strength and fortitude; Ma’s desperation, exasperation in trying to elucidate Jack to the reality of a world outside the “room”, stun with an unimaginable magnitude and profound love.
“Room” looses some of its carbonation when imprisonment is eradicated; Joan Allen’s performance, as “Joy”/Ma’s mother shines with sincerity, grace; gingerly avoiding problematic issues before Joy’s disappearance, until a confrontation ignites festering wounds. Sensationalism creeps in with familial disappointments, paparazzi stalking, depression.
“Room” gifts audiences, “Jack” a character whose naive wonderment, galvanizing charm, guileless observations will resonate long after whiskers sprout, locks shorn, adulthood attained.
THREE & 1&2 STARS!!!