Children of Men is a bleak, desolate look at a dystopian future where women have become infertile and the youngest person alive has just been murdered at eighteen years old. Theo Faron (Clive Owen) discovers that a young woman is miraculously pregnant and agrees to safely escort her through a warring London to safety, no matter the cost.
The acting is impeccable, and the cast is excellent. Clive Owen is magnificent in the lead, while Julianne Moore, Chiwetel Ejiofor, and Michael Caine lend support. I also got a small thrill seeing Ed Westwick and Charlie Hunnam in the film, even though their roles were small.
The cinematography is outstanding, per Alfonso Cuaron’s usual degree of directorial pedigree. The shots are beautiful, and the landscape is choked with dust, covered in an air of desperation, and dark with fear. Blood splatters the camera, and you can see the exhaustion etched into the character’s faces. The violence in the film is gut-churning but effectively used and never feels gratuitous.
The pacing was a little off for me, to be honest. Some parts of the film were slow-burning, while others were break-neckingly quick.
Overall, Children of Men is a beautifully shot, intriguing story that is held up by amazing performances. The pacing is inconsistent, but this is a magnificent film worthy of a watch (or two) if you can handle the subject matter and violence.
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