Donaghue’s adaptation of her own novel translates the vastly distinct sections of Room equally skilfully, and treats the recoveries of both Jack and Ma with nuance.
It’s Jack’s charming perspective and unique language that really defines Room, enabling adults to re-experience childlike curiosity and wonderment. Tremblay captures this as aptly as Larson conveys desperation and despair.
The cinematography is intelligently conceived; extreme closeups emphasise the claustrophobic setting, and soft focus reflects Jack’s underdeveloped long-range eyesight.
The rousing soundtrack is rather clichéd, and doesn’t gel with the complex non-deifying characterisation of Ma or the film’s recognition of post-escape hardship.
No one will be able to ignore Brie Larson anymore; her forceful and ragged determination almost burns through the screen, and the adaptation even improves on the story’s latter half.
CAST: Brie Larson, Jacob Tremblay, Sean Bridgers, Joan Allen, William H. Macy, Tom McCamus
DIRECTOR: Lenny Abrahamson
WRITER: Emma Donaghue (novel and screenplay)
SYNOPSIS: 5 year-old Jack and his Ma fight to escape from the enclosed surroundings that Jack has known his entire life.