With movie studios gearing up for this fall's slate of film festivals, from Telluride to Toronto to New York and many many more, buzz for the 2016 Academy Awards is already starting to percolate. Will Leo finally win his overdue trophy for The Revenant? Will J.Law get nomination number four for Joy? Will Eddie Redmayne join Tom Hanks and Spencer Tracy as a back-to-back winner thanks to his role as a transgender woman in The Danish Girl ? Well, today's release of the trailer for Room , starring Brie Larson, should add one more log to the fire of Oscar chatter.
Although Larson has been acting for over a decade, she recently attracted acclaim for her starring role in the indie drama Short Term 12 . Although the role won her a bevy of film festival and critics awards, the independent movie couldn't translate that into big Oscar love. Larson is currently attracting attention for her supporting role in Amy Schumer's Trainwreck , and the timely release of this trailer — for a movie based on a best-selling novel, no less — could help build the 25-year-old actress some well-deserved buzz.
Based on Emma Donoghue's 2010 book of the same name, Room tells the story of a young woman who has been living in captivity after being kidnapped seven years ago... and her young son, who hasn't known anything outside the four walls of the titular quarters. Larson will have a lot of competition if she wants to get her name on the ballot — not only Jennifer Lawrence, but also the likes of Meryl Streep (for Ricki And The Flash ), Carey Mulligan (for Suffragette ), last year's winner Julianne Moore (for Freeheld ), and her own co-star Amy Schumer, of course — but these six moments from the Room trailer are proof that she deserves a nomination:
1. When She Sings Her Son A Lullaby
The trailer opens with Larson as Ma singing her son, Jack, a soulful lullaby. The tune of "Big Rock Candy Mountain" makes for a haunting soundtrack to the creepy images of Room, and Larson's emotionally drained facial expression instantly draws us into the story.
2. When She Finds Time For Joy
It's nice to know that not everything in Room will be doom and gloom. The trailer takes time to show us Ma and Jack goofing off together, and Larson's delightful chemistry with her young co-star Jacob Tremblay is readily apparent — which is important, since the entire film will rest on the relationship between mother and son.
3. When She Tells The Story Of Alice
Can you imagine trying to explain the concept of the outside world to a young child who has only ever known the confines of four familiar walls? Ma reminds Jack of the story of Alice and the rabbit hole. "She fell down, down, down, deep in a hole," Jack says. "Well, I wasn't always in Room. I'm like Alice," she explains. I'll never watch Alice In Wonderland the same way again...
4. When She's Scared
Remember when I said it was a good thing the whole movie won't be doom and gloom? That's still true — but Larson also has to be able to effectively evoke the trauma of someone who's been locked in a shed for the better part of a decade. And the terrified look on her face when she hears the door unlock says it all.
5. When She's Reunited With Her Son
Hope you don't mind spoilers. The trailer shows Ma and Jack escaping from Room, and the moment she runs and wraps her arms around him is positively spine-tingling in its naked vulnerability.
6. When She Can't Wait To Introduce Him To The World
It seems as though Room will be concerned just as much with Jack's acclimatization to the world at large as it is with his and Ma's confinement. The trailer ends with a shot of mother and son strolling along the beach together. "You're gonna love it," she says in voiceover. "What?" he asks. "The world." Chills.
Room will premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival this September, and open nationwide on Oct. 16.
Images: A24 Films (6)