Short review of Children of Men (2006)

Children of Men:
A bleak view into the near future

I thought I would start off my film blogs with one of my all time favourites: Children of Men. This is in no way a full review. I just want to write down a few points about this film that I love and hopefully encourage the reader to go and watch it.
There is not much I can say about this film that has not already been said. It offers a grim view of Britain in the year 2027. The country is collapsing and has fallen under the control of a authoritarian government. Infertility has spread throughout the country and no children have been born for the last 18 years.

We follow the main character Theo (played by Clive Owen) in his attempt to rescue a young immigrant girl who we find out has become pregnant. Word gets out about 'The Human Project'. An ambiguious organisation which was set up to put an end to infertility and keep the children safe.

While the plot is fairly straightforward, the real reason this film sticks in my mind is the visuals. The cinematography is the most immersive i've ever seen. Most of the shots are handheld, making us feel as if we are looking at a first person account of real events. One scene in particular comes to mind. It happens when our group of characters attempt to drive to a safe house. The camera is set in the middle of the car and only moves left and right. In a single take we see the scene go from a happy and charming moment where our characters first start to bond turn into a deafening scene of chaos. Clip linked below.

Another such scene is where the newly born baby is being carried down the stairs of a building under siege. We hear all the gunfire fall silent as everybody looks in awe as the first baby born in 18 years passes in front of them. Again done all in one shot and the impact this leaves on the viewer is unforgettable. Clip linked below

Also worth mentioning is the soundtrack. I'm usually not a huge fan of the use of pop songs in films but here it is done extremely well. The most noteable example is used when Theo is visiting a government building in the centre of London. The building is fortified and the complete opposite of the dirty war torn country we see outsite. We see nothing but clear skies, royal guards and pristine parks. The song choice here is King Crimson's "In the Court of the Crimson King". There is also an inflatable pig over battersea powerstation in reference to Pink Floyd's "Animals". Arguably an album with a similar theme to the film.

This film is not an easy watch. It shows us the future we know could happen but dont like taling about even though we know it's right around the corner. I believe this film should be considered a modern classic and if you like your futures dystopian, this is one for you!

Chosen screenshots:

Screenshots are used under the Fair Use Act 1976

Trailer: [Link]