Children of Men - All this and no awards?!?!

20th Century Fox
Duration: 109min
Category: drama
Available: On DVD
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Alfonso Cuarůn is probably the most interesting film maker working today. Okay, everyone probably has their own opinion of who is the most interesting film maker working today. I'd probably pick Ang Lee or Wong Kar Wai in that catagory too. It doesnít matter what genre he attempts, he makes a film that amazes me. Even when he took on Harry Potter, a film series I have little interest in, he blew me away. Now he has done it again with Children of Men.

I have loved each of his films, most of the time more than the last. Children of Men is no exception. I have always been somewhat interested in the dystopian future genre and this film ranks up there with the best. What is interesting about this story, and stories like it, are the natural consequences of our own crumbling realities. Even more interesting is the way we find hope and even salvation despite the despair. This is what Cuarůn is dealing with in Children of Men.

Itís 20 years in the future and women have stopped being able to reproduce. The youngest person in the world is 18 and has just been killed. Societies are falling apart and suddenly there is a pregnant woman. What happens next?

Children of Men explores themes of competing world views, the places between right and wrong, what love means and other questions of the universe. All of this and it tells a brilliantly compelling story at the same time. It grips you from the first moments and keeps your adrenalin high for the entire ride. Good story telling combined with engaging soul exploration makes for an intense and satisfying experience.

And Cuarůn fills his film with moments of intense and rare beauty. There is an incredible scene that involves Clive Owen running through a battle zone, in and out of a building being torn apart by war that is filmed in one long, concentrated and exquisite shot that will move you to tears. This film is so beautiful it makes you want to weep. Itís that good.

On a curious note, Cuarůn seems fascinated with the colour Green. Watch any of his films and you will see. Children of Men, like his other works, is a masterpiece for the eye. He has created a beautifully rotting world and you just want to soak it all in.

But Children of Men isnít about the rot. Itís about the hope that survives. Itís about the spirit of humanity. This may be his most important film as well as his most exciting. Itís both adventure and allegory. Itís entertaining and enthralling. Itís quite simply the best film I have seen in a very long time and I canít wait to experience it, with all its emotion and beauty, again and again.

The mystery to me is how this film can be so universally praised by critics and those in the industry and still receive no awards despite mediocre films like Dreamgirls getting so much attention.

Review By: Collin Smith

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