Following on from The Hateful Eight and The Revenant, 2016 is continuing strong. One of this year's hottest awards season tickets was, undoubtedly, Lenny Abrahamson's film adaption of the renowned novel Room. Here's my review of the film.

The premise of the film follows the five year old Jack (Jacob Tremblay) and his mother Joy (Brie Larson) - or simply Ma as Jack refers to her as - as they spend their time confined within a small Room. Having been born there and having lived his whole life only there, Jack has grown up knowing this singular Room as his entire world - since Joy was abducted and forced to give him birth to him there, confined in this small area. However, not wanting to deprive her son, she has tried to make the most of the situation and has created so much from this small room to make sure that Jack can still live as fulfilling a life as possible, in their given circumstances. But when things get too much and she and her son try to make their escape, everything in Jack's whole universe and whole life is changed when he comes face to face with the real world.
With 2012's brilliant What Richard Did and 2014's outrageous Frank, Lenny Abrahamson became a director to watch and look forward to - creating such atypical and audacious films - and showed us that he knows how to make good movies. His latest project, Room, the adaption of the critically acclaimed novel by Emma Donoghue of the same name, is no exception. This film is incredible. Abrahamson has delivered yet another stunner of a film: provocative, incredible and heartfelt. From the start right through to the finish, this is a compelling film, so laden with nuance; Abrahamson translates Donoghue's gripping novel with elegnace and sincerity. This is a subdued piece that is emotionally rich and tender, whilst equally thrilling and captivating. The characters are just so well written that you can't help but empathise with their situations and get absorbed by them, this is most especially the case with the characters of Jack and Ma, who we really root for and connect emotionally with. We're so invested in their journey and it's heartfelt and raw and feels so genuine. It's a touching and powerful piece of work that is tearjerking and inspiring and will really demand your attention - made all the more stunning from the perspective of a 5 year old.

Of course, this is a testament to how well the characters have been written and just how real and authentic everything feels. However, it's also a testament to the performances that bring these characters to life on the big-screen. Everyone is great in this film. Both Joan Allen and William H. Macy give some stellar supporting performances here and are terrific in their respective roles. However, this film belongs to Jacob Tremblay and Brie Larson. The pair are utterly phenomenal and there is some palpable chemistry between the two; you really believe their close mother-son bond and their relationship feels so genuine. Tremblay is a startling revelation, giving an Oscar-calibre performance at only 9 years old. He is breathtakingly good as Jack, so lost and in awe of everything and Tremblay plays this to perfection, bringing such innonence and subtlety to the proceedings. Larson is astonishing too, as Ma. Her performance is something to behold and she definitely deserves the Oscar for her remarkable work. She gives such a subdued, riveting performance that is wholly convincing and triumphant. Both her and Jacob are nothing short of perfect! 
Everything about Room is dazzling. The cinematography is crisp and gorgeous; the music so gentle but powerful, creating such a tense atmosphere; the acting is remarkable and the directing is stunning, with Abrahamson nailing this adaption on the head, creating such profanity and meaning. This is a beautiful, provocative film and does the source material justice. However, if there's one flaw with this film it's that the impact of the first half of the film is lost as we approach the second half and the tone and atmosphere feels very different too. It still packs quite an emotional punch but it doesn't feel as consistent and it's as if the momentum has been lost a bit; feeling quite separate from the first half. However, it doesn't take away from the fact that, in the end, Room is utterly remarkable and a truly incredible piece of film.

Room is sensational. Emotional, provocative and tender, Lenny Abrahamson has delivered a very subdued, beautiful piece of cinema.

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About the Author

Awais Irfan
Founder of Oasis Awais, and avid lover of life, Awais Irfan's love of writing and film is unequivocal. Ever since he was a little kid, he has loved the cinematic experience; so much so, he is studying Film Production in Glasgow and hopes to be the next "big thing" in directing.

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