I finally had the opportunity to see Children of Men yesterday, a film I’ve been anticipating for quite some time. It was brilliant. The movie depicts a dystopian future in which humanity has, for reasons unknown, lost the ability to bear offspring and much of the world has collapsed into violence, save for the UK, which is a a grim and xenophobic police state. Clive Owen portrays an everyman who is not particularly brave or heroic, but still tries to do the right thing despite his deeply cynical view of the world. The film works because it doesn’t wave its arms at the audience and scream, “Look! Look! It’s the future!” The world is familiar but disquietingly foreign at the same time. Director Alfonso Cuaron makes seamless shifts between the intimate and the sweeping. The last third of the movie was particularly astonishing in its scope. The cast is uniformly strong, but Owen and Michael Caine in particular give compelling and nuanced performances. Even the soundtrack is great.
Can you tell I like this movie? I wish more intelligent, adult science fiction like this was being produced. However, I’m guessing that it will be lucky to break even at the box office. But if I have to settle for scraps, at least this one was worth the wait.
Hoping to see it soon–and I’m so relieved that it’s making a good impression on so many folks I respect, because it’s one of my favorite books ever. I know they rearranged some characters and events, even some major characters, but as long as the end result is compelling and astonishing (your words), I’m looking forward to seeing it.
I just saw the movie last night and loved it! I can’t wait to read the book. I’ve read many books by P.D. James but somehow missed this one.