Monday, January 18, 2016

Room (2015) - 10 stars out of 10

Room (2015) - 10 stars out of 10

“Room” is one of the most vivid movies that you will ever see.  The concept is fascinating: A woman is inexplicably trapped in a room with her five-year-old son.  That’s all.  As the story unfolds, we learn details of how long they have been there and where their food comes from; however, the mystery continues to be preserved as we are left to fill in the rest with our imaginations.  There are so many things that I would love to say but I want everybody to be just as surprised and on the edge of your seat as I was.  In fact, this film contains ten of the most intense minutes that you will ever see in any movie.  I swear, there came a point where I had to remind myself to breath.  The story is an endless series of emotional highs and lows that create a deep connection between the characters and the audience.  These emotional moments are enhance by a powerful musical score by Stephen Rennicks.  Its absence reinforces the hopelessness and isolation of being trapped in the room, but then the score soars when it needs to enhance the joyous and devastating moments.  I find that the most poetic piece of the film stems from one of the darkest psychological implications:  The mental well-being of this young boy is completely dependent upon his mother but, when everything turns, he suddenly needs to become her strength in a time of need.  Again, I’m doing my best to avoid any spoilers so you will just have to see it for yourself.  The acting is astounding.  Brie Larson will take home an Oscar for the endless number of emotions that she vividly portrays throughout the film.  Her character is simply known as “Ma,” a constant reminder that she has been stripped of her identity and her entire world is her son.  She doesn’t need a cape to turn her character into a hero.  Jacob Tremblay was equally amazing.  It is rare that I believe that a child performance deserved an Oscar nomination but his acting is highly refined and brings out a lot of our emotions.  He holds his own against Larson’s Oscar-nominated performance and isn’t merely along for the ride.  The realism of this story is further enhanced by its supporting cast.  Joan Allen has been out of vogue for awhile but she delivers her best performance in years.  It took a lot to steal the spotlight from Larson and Tremblay, but she definitely had her moment.  Also, the very presence of William H. Macy adds a brief but necessary complication to this story.  There comes a point where you start dreading that the ending will spoil the entire story.  Dreading that, no matter what the ending, it won't live up to the rest of the film.  But Emma Donoghue creates the perfect conclusion that allows this story to come full circle.  One of the best pieces of advice that I can give is that you should NOT watch the trailer!  Just take my word for it and blindly walk into this film.  “Room” will keep you intrigued, emotional, and on the edge of your seat from start until finish.  More importantly, you will walk away from the film a changed person.

[Pictured: Two of the greatest performances that you will ever see]

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