In 2027, in a chaotic world in which humans can no longer procreate, a former activist agrees to help transport a miraculously pregnant woman to a sanctuary at sea, where her child's birth may help scientists save the future of humankind.
ActorsStarring: Clive Owen, Michael Caine, Julianne Moore, Charlie Hunnam, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Clare-Hope Ashitey, Danny Huston, Peter Mullan, Juan Gabriel Yacuzzi, Mishal Husain, Rob Curling, Maria McErlane, Michael Haughey, Phaldut Sharma, Tehmina Sunny, Michael Klesic, Ilario Bisi-Pedro, Caroline Lena Olsson, Dhaffer L'Abidine, Jon Chevalier, Rita Davies, Kim Fenton, Chris Gilbert, Phoebe Hawthorne, Rebecca Howard, Atalanta White, Laurence Woodbridge, Miriam Karlin, Philippa Urquhart, Jody Halse, Martina Messing, Simon Poland, Barnaby Edwards, Ed Westwick, Valerie Griffiths, Billy Cook, Pam Ferris, Gary Hoptrough, Rob Inch, Jamie Kenna, Maurice Lee, Bruno Ouvrard, Denise Mack, Jacek Koman, Joy Richardson, Milenka James, Somi De Souza, Francisco Labbe, Thorston Manderlay, Georgia Goodman, Dorothy Grumbar, Barry Martin, Keith Dunphy, Raymond Trickitt, Nabil Shaban, Goran Kostić, Oana Pellea, Faruk Pruti, Yolanda Vazquez, Andrew Brooke, David Olawale Ayinde, Andy Callaghan, Ray Donn, Forbes KB, James Fiddy, P.D. James, Jamie Lengyel, Jeff Leslie, João Costa Menezes, Vidal Sancho, John Warman, Paul Warren, Yana Yanezic
Children of Men is a near future science fiction film based on a 1992 P.D. James novel and directed by the ever versatile Alfonso Cuarón (Y Tu Mama Tambien, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, and Gravity). It is set in 2027, but there is nothing special about that date. It could just as easily be 2050, or 2019. It feels like it is just a breath away. Forget giant asteroids or alien invasions, Children of Men conveys a doomsday scenario that is realistically frightening and contemporary.
Mankind has become infertile, there has not been a new birth recorded for over 18 years. Devolving into chaos from the ticking clock facing everyone, the world has resorted to violence. Britain, the only country that still “soldiers on,” has closed its borders to the swarms of refugees (sound familiar?) Those that make it through the cracks, called “fugees,” are captured and deported. The country is now a completely totalitarian state with state police and surveillance cameras everywhere.
The war-torn atmosphere and the mayhem that seems to erupt out of nowhere convey the urgency and danger of the situation. All of it is captured brilliantly by Alfonso Cuarón and the incomparable Emmanuel Lubetzki. Without hope, people are resorting to their base instincts ad lust for survival. Theo’s quest to protect Kee becomes the only thing that matters. The revelation that she is pregnant means that she is fighting for the future of all mankind.
Clive Owen plays Theo as a very ordinary man. With the action in this film, he could have easily become a 007 knockoff, but instead we are left in the frightening mess with him and allowed to feel his fear. In the same way, it would have been easy to write the appearance of this pregnant woman as a miracle, but Cuarón never makes that mistake. It’s hard to categorize this film as either a rich thematic drama when it elevates into a high-octane action film. That is one of the best things about it. It is a great dystopian thriller that is one of the best things that we have seen from a talented young director.