Children of Men 27 October, 2006Posted by paralleldivergence in Brad & Phil, children of men, film review, Movies.
I hadn’t been to the movies for quite some time. I didn’t even really know much about this movie called Children of Men, but something was telling me to go watch it. OK, I probably shouldn’t call my wife “something”, not when she has such great taste when it comes to movies (and husbands). Anyway, last weekend, off we went. It took about two minutes for the film to grab me, shake me and glue me to the seat.
All across the news broadcasts was tragedy. The world’s youngest person had been killed. “Baby” Diego was only 18 years old. Even though the story is set in London, Diego’s death in South America was a worldwide catastrophe for a dying human civilization. It was 2027 and there had been no babies born on the planet since Diego in 2009. War had raged for years. New York was destroyed by a nuclear blast. England was the last nation to survive and was the chosen destination for the world’s refugees.
So the setting unfolded. A hardline government was ruthless in its treatment of the fugees and ironically, the major organised human rights activist group was just as physically violent in their opposition to rule. In the centre of all of this mess was Theo (Clive Owen), a bureaucrat who through a long-past association with the now leader of the resistance (Julianne Moore), is thrust into probably the most important job facing humanity – the protection of Kee: the first pregnant woman in almost two decades.
Children of Men is exquisitely shot. You’ll be wondering how some of the sequences in the film could possibly have been made. There’s a lot of hand-held camera work and one unbelievably long single take through an extremely dangerous and authentic-looking battle scene. Director Alfonso Cuarón (Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban) reworked P.D. James’ 1993 novel to keep the film rolling at an excellent pace, slowly revealing piece after piece of an enthralling tale that oozes replay value.
Although it’s clearly science fiction, the triggers for this dystopian society that developed over only twenty or so years, have definite parallels in our society today. There is clear evidence of the War on Terror coming back home, environmental disasters, intolerance of refugees and government propaganda all playing main roles in the imaginary situation portrayed. There is a message of warning that comes through screaming to us today that all it will take is a minor divergence of the path we are now treading to end up in similar disarray.
I would probably go as far as to say that Children of Men is the best movie I have seen in the past five years. It is a very confronting film, but go see it. Twice. I’m sure you’ll reconsider how you feel about a crying baby. Have you seen it yet?
One thing that never really was explained in the movie was what caused mankind’s infertility. There are many things that can shake a society to its knees. Here’s Brad & Phil’s take on it. Click the link below it for a full size view of this epic cartoon.