One of my very early blog posts in May 2012 was a book review of Room by Emma Donoghue which was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize in 2010. Last month, I attended a preview screening at The Hospital Club in central London of the new film adaptation directed by Lenny Abrahamson with a screenplay written by Donoghue herself. Starring Brie Larson as Ma and Jacob Tremblay as her son Jack, ‘Room’ has already received widespread critical acclaim including four Academy Award nominations earlier today and has dominated film festivals around the world. It had a limited release last October in the United States and will open in cinemas across the UK tomorrow on Friday 15th January 2016.
Tag Archives: Room
‘Room’ tells the harrowing story of Ma, kidnapped seven years ago by captor Old Nick and her five year old son Jack who are imprisoned in a single room. Partially inspired by Josef Fritzl’s incarceration of his daughter, there are no real surprises to the plot of this novel if you are familiar with the background of this case. But whereas the hysterical media coverage of such crimes often focuses as much if not more on the abusers than the abused, Donoghue has wisely chosen to focus on the story of Ma and Jack rather than Old Nick who only makes brief appearances throughout.
For Ma, Room is a prison where she has been abused and raped. But for Jack, Room is home and he knows nothing else. It is his struggle to deal with the alien concept of Outside that is the most affecting aspect of the book. As well as writing very convincingly on this subject, Donoghue is also excellent at building suspense and evoking the claustrophobia of solitary confinement. Continue reading