Directed by Mexican Alfonso Cuarón and based on the novel by mystery writer P.D. James, “Children of Men” is a futuristic movie in which the world is being overwhelmed by big problems: desolation, hunger, anger, intolerance, racism… pretty much sounds like a real future, doesn’t it?
The film is based on the premise that, for reasons unknown, the human race has become unable to procreate and is facing the possibility of extinction.
British actor Clive Owen plays the movie’s main protagonist, Theo Faron, a man who views the events of a hopeless world with cold indifference, probably because he feels indifferent about his own life, until a former lover and fellow political activist (played by Julianne Moore) reappears asking for help.
Owen is indeed an unconventional hero in unconventional shoes. The former soccer player’s acting is more than believable, on a par with the brilliant-as-usual performance of Michael Caine, who plays a retired caricaturist looking after his sick wife. And let’s not forget Claire-Hope Ashitey, whose portrayal of Kee, a miraculously pregnant woman carrying the promise of human survival in her womb, provided terrific support for Owen’s role.
Some might predict that “Children of Men” would be a classic, apocalyptic movie, depressing and doomsdayish, but what we actually find here is a film that shows the duality of human nature in a voyage from hopeless times to the promise of a different tomorrow. While stupid men are immersed in violence, wars and the hunger for power, other people outside the circles of power fight for survival, providing hope at unexpected moments throughout the movie.
Cuarón has a number of big titles under his belt, including “Y Tu Mamá También” (2001) and “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban” (2004). With “Children of Men,” he can add another success to his list.
Great cinematography and music create a remarkable environment for Cuarón’s excellent directing and an overall outstanding performance by the cast, for a final product that will surprise you.