Jacob Tremblay gives one of the great performances by a child actor that I have ever seen. Brie Larson rightly received praise for her for, but Tremblay was a revelation for me. Honestly, I knew little about how the story would play out coming into the movie and was pleasantly surprised that it held up even through the second act, which many reviewers felt was the weaker half.
After all the hype and awards, I'm left feeling mostly underwhelmed. Clunky aesthetic choices often distracted me, as did the light and superficial treatment of some very dark subject matter. There were some interesting things going on, though, with pretty good performances all around.
Not as insufferably treacly as I had feared, but the real problem is that it's too flat and impotent emotionally and psychologically. The extreme situation is inherently (sadistically) interesting but its ramifications on their psyche and relationship is explored only in bullet points. What's left is a well-meaning but inert sketch of vague trauma.
It's so nice to finally see Brie Larson ascend to the A-list after an already Oscar-worthy performance in 2013's "Short Term 12". The dynamic between her and Jacob Tremblay is the core of the film, and while it could have settled for a more crowd-pleaser happy ending, "Room" finishes on a bittersweet note, dealing with the struggle of overcoming such a traumatic experience. Very touching, from beginning to end.
I feared that Room would lose interest as soon as Jack and Joy left that horrifying claustrophobic place. It didn't, the world outside was just as frightful and captivating to watch. Very tender and engaging with a few morbid moments, Brie Larson is incredible, but the tiny Jacob Tremblay makes the movie - biggest snub in this awards season!
A telefilm to the letter, both in production terms and in its writing, which does nothing more than to accumulate great themes with small images and a horrible music ,dreadfully used, and an unspeakable reverberating voice off, corresponding to the illusory will of the child protagonist. The spirit of good took over the cinematographic act and it's much worse than the Disney productions of the 70s and 80s.
Abrahamson continues (or even completes) his eccentric trajectory towards mainstream success with this brave, bravura, intermittently brilliant adaptation of Donoghue's thriller/tearjerker/manual-for-living. Jacob Tremblay's voiceovers, in particular, are just knockouts of thoughtfully wonder-struck primal ontology, which is probably why I laughed, cried, and possibly even whimpered and groaned. But I'm OK. Really.
A brilliant, gutsy four-hander between the director, the writer and the two lead actors. My only reserve that it so perfectly captures not just the story beats, but also the characters, tone, atmosphere and everything else from the novel, that those who have read it may be more of the opinion that the film's greatest triumph is also its biggest flaw - should be a film ever be a carbon copy of its source material?