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Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Frogs in a Well

Lost amongst the flashier and big-budget studio releases such as ‘The Revenant,’ ‘The Big Short’ and ‘The Martian,’ one of the under-the-radar indie films nominated for Best Picture this Oscar season is director Lenny Abrahamson’s ‘Room,’ the poignant and heart-wrenching story of an abducted young woman (Brie Larson) and her son (Jacob Tremblay) imprisoned for years within the claustrophobic confines of a storage shed and their subsequent freedom.  ‘Room’ is a remarkable film in so many ways, deeply emotional and full of hope.  There is really nothing quite like it.
 
Based on the best-selling novel by Emma Donoghue (who also wrote the screenplay), ‘Room’ is not just a realistic portrayal of life under captivity but also the wonders and joy of seeing a much larger world for the very first time.  In Jack and “Ma,” Tremblay and Larson gave convincing performances that not only made us believe but also enthralled us, and it is easy to see how the unbreakable and empowering bond between mother and son is what truly kept them going through the long years of captivity as well as helping them cope with the “real world” after their eventual escape.
 
Compelling, fascinating and inspiring, ‘Room’ is one of those uplifting and cathartic experiences that resonate long after the credits have rolled.  It probably won’t win the Best Picture Oscar this year (odds are 40 to 1) among the other notable contenders out there, but don’t be surprised if Brie Larson takes home a statue for being such a great mum.
 
Grade: A
 
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