Last night I analysed Room (2015), the Irish-Canadian production that won the best motion picture award at the Canadian Screen Awards in 2016. The screenplay was written by Emma Donoghue, based on her novel of the same name. The movie tells the story of a young woman and her son who are sequestered in a garden shed in Ontario by a man who regularly rapes the woman. Well before the end of the movie the woman and her five-year-old son manage to escape their forced confinement and the young woman is reunited with her parents, seven years after her abduction. I'm not revealing any secrets--this was all in the trailer. What struck me most about this movie was the lack of discussion about the ordeal this abducted and repeatedly raped woman went through. Her parents do not discuss it with her when she moves in with them, nor does she discuss it with a psychiatrist. The only time she voices her opinions on the seven years of hell this man put her through after abducting her off the street when she was seventeen was when she shouts at her mother: "I'm sorry that I'm not nice anymore, but you know what? Maybe if your voice saying 'be nice' hadn't been in my head then maybe I wouldn't have helped the guy with the f*cking sick dog!" No lengthy discussion ensues. The absence of discussion between the young woman and her mother is disappointing. It would have been interesting to see more exchanges between the female characters. Women's voice is one of the dozens of things I track in movies for my upcoming book.
© 2017 Alline Cormier
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