In 2027, in a chaotic world in which women have become somehow infertile, a former activist agrees to help transport a miraculously pregnant woman to a sanctuary at sea.
The human race has been living in fear of the the next extinction level event or pandemic. Whether it be man made(nuclear holocaust), natural(a meteor strike) or a mixture off the two, scientists and so called experts spend massive amounts of money, trying to first identify, then prevent.
In Children of Men, director Alfonso Cuarón(who more recently penned hit space disaster movie, Gravilty), drops us smack bang in the middle of such a pandemic. Set in the UK in 2027, we find out that the entire female population have become infertile, and no child has been born for 18 years. Britain, being the final nation that is still functioning, has closed its borders. It is host to a civil war, between the establishment and a band of rebels who are pro immigration.
As the movie opens, we see numerous T.V. reports telling the world that the youngest person on the planet has been murdered. The reason? He refused to give his murderer an autograph.
We see the films leading man, Theo(played by Clive Owen), watching the reports in a dingy London cafe. When he leaves, the cafe explodes, terrifying him.
As he is frozen with fear, he is kidnapped by the rebels. They are led by a woman named Julian Taylor(Julianne Moore), and we learn the Theo and Julian were once livers, and they once lost a child together. Julian is backed up by Luke(Chiwetel Ejiofor, who more recently was in The Martian). He is the muscle of the group, as well as being Julian’s advisor.
The rebels want to use Theo to help smuggle Kee(Clare-Hope Ashitey), who they believe to be the last fertile female on earth into a supposed safe haven. The film is then focused on their journey, of which, i wont spoil for you.
The acting in Children of Men really is mostly top notch. Clive Owen plays the reluctant hero well. It is refreshing to see a male lead that isn’t ultra brave and heroic. The chemistry between he and Julianne Moore is plain to see, and you can really feel the pain the two share for their lost child.
One thing is was impressed with, was Cuarón’s vision of 2027 London.Wall to wall grey concrete, daubed with terrorist spin graffiti. Bearing in mind the film was made in 2006, the fact he has portrayed the UK as Xenophobic, with its borders closed really resonates today, with the EU referendum looming and “migrant crisis” taking up so many column inches in the press.
While the directing is for the vast majority, excellent, there are a few technical “goofs” and continuity errors. I wont go into them in detail, as i think it would be unfair to be so negative to such a well made and important film.
There is a string of black comedy laced into the film too, which although some may find hard to take, i thought it really helped the film flow, and didn't let the film be dragged into becoming depressing.
To sum up, in parts the film is simply stunning. Part pre-apocalypse disaster movie, part action film, part political satire. Its not perfect, and may sometimes appear a little clumsy, but overall it is very entertaining and, at times, extremely moving.