...engaging and discerning culture, as a way of life...

January 08, 2007

Children of Men - 7

In this dystopian story, loosely adapted from the novel by P.D. James and directed by Mexican director Alfonso Cuaron (Y tu mama tambien, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban), the world in 2027 has seen the loss of all human fertility. The most recent news is that the youngest person on the planet, an 18-year-old “Baby Diego” has just been killed, and Great Britian is a police state, with many refugee camps. Into this situation, Theo Faron (Clive Owen) soon finds himself caught up with a rebel group that is run by his former wife, Julian (Julianne Moore). At first he is unsure of their motivations, but it seems important and serious. Eventually Theo is let in on the secret; the group is trying to protect, Kee (Claire-Hope Ashitey), a refugee woman who has become pregnant. Theo soon becomes the sole protector who can possibly get Kee to The Human Project. Theo’s friend, Jasper (Michael Caine), is the spiritual advisor of the film, talking about how faith, hope, and love are connected in this drive to save Kee, and possibly be the only hope for humanity.
The weight of the story is intense- it is a picture of the future with very little hope. The intensity it intentional, but it is lightened by some humorous dialogue. Politically this film has many parallels to films like V for Vendetta and Blood Diamond, both of which make a critique of contemporary culture in America.
The film focuses on the tension between the masses that have lost hope in a future and the apathy and violence that has escalated because of this and the hope that Theo and those that see Kee as a possibility of a different future. Throughout the film it is this “miracle” alone that can awaken the value of life and hope (the parallels to the gospel are pretty apparent). The film ask the important question: Is life possible without hope?

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