6 Best Movies Set In One Room | Virgin Media
6 Best Movies Set In One

6 Best Movies Set In One Room

13/01/2016Movies

Related

Lenny Abrahamson’s drama-thriller about a woman and her young son who are held captive in an enclosed space rightly won all of the awards (including the Oscar for Best Actress for Brie Larson), not least for ‘Most Fitting Title Of The Year’. While events transpire that pull the outside world in, Room is very much a movie about the confinement, control and comparative isolation that the two experience whilst pseudo-living with a nut job who doesn’t want them to leave.  In the featurette below, director Lenny Abrahamson tells of the limitations of shooting in such a small space, but still showing that love has no boundaries:

Room is just the latest in a long line of Hollywood adventures which take TV’s ‘bottle episode’ parameters to the max, and it’s a narrative efficiency that leads to some brilliant (and sometimes barmy) cinematic experiments which pit characters against themselves and their environment. Starting with…

1. Buried (2010)

“I’d like to order one extra-large pizza please.  Actually, better make that a small”

“I’d like to order one extra-large pizza please. Actually, better make that a small”

Now, technically, the coffin in which Ryan Reynolds’ Paul Conroy is trapped for the 95 minute run time isn’t strictly a room. But pedantics be damned, because while Reynolds’ wasn’t actually buried alive, his commitment to the role, and his flexibility in performing within a space mere inches taller and wider than he is, is pretty impressive.

Claustrophobia, psychosis and panic are in full show in this thriller about an American truck driver who’s kidnapped by an Iraqi insurgent, buried alive, left with a phone and given a very finite timeline to escape before the oxygen runs out.

2.  Exam (2009) 

“And there you were thinking The Apprentice was bad enough”

And there you were thinking The Apprentice was bad enough

Exam takes corporate competitiveness to nightmarish proportions, in this single room British thriller that pits eight business candidates against each other in a final stage interview that confines them to a single exam room and has only three key rules - they can’t talk to the invigilator, spoil their paper or leave the room. The only snafu? When they turn over their papers, there are no questions. Before long, there’s duplicity, espionage and murder abound.

3. Devil (2010) 

“It doesn’t matter how many times you press the button, the lift won’t move any faster!”

“It doesn’t matter how many times you press the button, the lift won’t move any faster!”

M. Night Shyamalan strikes again with this so-unscary-it’s-kinda-hilarious ‘horror’ about five morally squiffy people trapped in an elevator. Only… one of them is the devil on a mission to collect the other four’s souls. While Shyamalan didn’t direct, he did craft the story and produce, and the result is exactly as loopy as you’d expect. Still, a short running time, and a commitment to the supernatural melodrama and low-budget concept means it’s never anything less than entertaining.

4. Locke (2013) 

“I’m going nowhere.  Literally – I’m on a ring-road”

“I’m going nowhere. Literally – I’m on a ring-road”

Locke is the epitome of a movie that shouldn’t work. A drama about a construction foreman driving from Birmingham to London, set entirely within his car… it doesn’t sound the most enticing. Even more criminally, it lumbers Tom Hardy with a dodgy Welsh accent and restricts him to a scenario that not once calls for him to take off his top. Bah.

Despite that, Steven Knight’s British drama works thanks to a brilliant supporting cast who dial in on Hardy’s loud speaker in turn (see if you can hear-spot Olivia Colman, Andrew Scott, Ruth Wilson and Alice Lowe from their tones alone), and the gradual, ever-unsettling manner in which Hardy’s life comes crashing down around him, one conversation at a time.

5. The Mist (2007)

“I only popped in to get some milk”

“I only popped in to get some milk”

2007’s sci-fi horror is both criminally under-looked and yet one of the best Stephen King adaptations ever made, following the claustrophobic nightmare of a monster-filled mist that envelops a small US town, and the escape tactics of those survivors who have found refuge in a supermarket.

Director and screenwriter Frank Darabont tweaked Stephen King’s original story to somehow even more horrifying effect, powering the main plot with all the twisted horror of the original, but culminating with one hell of a deliriously bleak twist ending.

6. Cube (1997)

“Definitely not to be confused with the Phillip Schofield TV show version”

Definitely not to be confused with the Phillip Schofield TV show version

For many a sci-fi fan, the ‘one room movie’ concept can only mean 1997’s twisted, head-boggling thriller - a cult insta-classic that finds five strangers trapped in a Cube full of inter-connecting rooms with seemingly no escape.

Oh, and with a hefty percentage of said rooms filled with deadly traps that will kill you in the blink of an eye. Before long the group turns on each other, graphic deaths ensue, and there’s only one survivor who makes it out alive.

Room is released in UK cinemas on Friday 15th January.

Recommended for you

Two things we love


20 things you never knew about Star Wars

Even as big Star Wars buffs, sometimes we learn something that totally throws us for a hoop...

20 things you never knew about Star Wars

Star Trek – where are they now?

With a bunch of Star Trek movies hitting the big screen, we can’t help wondering whatever happened to the stars of the many TV series…

Star Trek – where are they now?