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Children Of Men (2-disc Special Edition) [2006] - 6.98

Customer reviews (av rating: 3.5):

Rating: 4:
Blade Runner comes to the UK : Based on a PD James novel, Children of Men potrays a time when the population has become infertile, and law and order has broken down across the nation. The film version of the book doesn't dwell too long on some of the elements of the plot - but it's certainly well-done. Complete with neon-lit wastelands, rain and random explosions, it's like Blade Runner comes to Britain, with various detention camps, terrorist groups and a generally Orwellian atmosphere pervading the mood of the film.

Clive Owen is on good form - certainly better than in some of his more recent performances, and Michael Caine turns in a good cameo role - looking pretty much like John Lennon would have done had he made it to old age.

All in a good film, bleak certainly - but you can't help feeling that the future as portrayed in the film - anarchy, rioting, detention camps, a break down of law and order - is already here.

Rating: 3:
Frank and challenging : This film could go a lot further, but what it does say makes for interesting thought-provoking viewing.
It isn't perfect, and leaves a lot unsaid and unanswered, but it is good to see something different, and Clive Owen is a great leading man. If it meant to be unsettling it was. It portrays a bleak potential future, and isn't the easiest viewing, although it was nowhere near as harrowing as I had imagined it might be actually.

Rating: 3:
a let down : agree with G. Haynes below. an interesting idea of a childless society was let down by an unconvincing story line. for me, the horror of mankind being potentially wiped out from people's inability to procreate was never explored. shame. the plot was simply the resue of a pregnant woman. the depicted vision of the future was a little ridiculous too with cages of howling illegal immigrants in the streets! a little too topical. clive owen was also a little lifeless as the lead character. its a short film that ends abruptly and without any feeling of satisfaction. for something of the same dystopia genre see '28 days later' - great film!

Rating: 3:
Fertile subject matter, barren plot : Slightly disappointing this. A decent enough concept to be sure - humans have become infertile and society has fallen apart. Just when all hope seems lost a woman finally falls pregnant and panic ensues. Lots of scope for suspense, action, intrigue and horror I'm sure you'll agree. The problem here is with the execution.

Things start to go wrong with the choice of Clive Owen to play our reluctant hero. The first film I sam him in was King Arthur and his performance was so bad I thought he'd disappear off our screens forever. In fact quite the contrary happened and to be fair he has put in a few memorable performances since (Sin City, Closer). The problem is, in such a bleak setting as here his blankness just numbs the impact of the film. I know he is meant to be jaded, depressed, unfeeling, etc but how are we meant to give two hoots whether he succeeds or fails when he displays all the charisma and energy of a frozen chicken!

None of the remaining characters are much more sympathetic - we never really get to know any of them. This film owes a huge debt to 28 Day Later in its style but although C of M manages to recreate the horrific ultra realistic scenes of dread and violence to a tee it fails to match it in terms of characterisation and humour. This makes the whole thing a bit of an ordeal - a depressingly monochrome trudge of an adventure.

The best part of the film is the final third where all hell breaks loose at a refugee camp. Truly nightmareish and well shot - pure undiluted paranoia and panic. At this point the characters have pretty much said all they have to say and just run around trying not to get blown to pieces!

All in all a bit grim then. If you like a bit of light and shade to your apocalyptic dystopia then you'd be better off watching 28 Days Later. If you like your films bleak to the core then this could be an all time favourite!

Rating: 5:
2006 best movie : I was lucky enough to go to watch this movie during the opening week without reading hardly any reviews.

The action is based in 2027 , no child has been born in 18 years and the human race faces extinction . Law and order have broken down all over the world and only Britain stands , all immigrants are declared illegal and face immediate extradition .Is based in a book by P.D. James and one of he few examples when the movie is much better that the book is based upon.

With very clear references to the Iraq war and pacifism and raises issues such as immigration and violence, for example the main character never touches a gun.

All the 5 main actors are brilliant, my favourite being Michael Caine , who based his character in John Lennon.

The action sequences are like nothing seen before for their realism and the way they were filmed , it certainly would make the viewer want to watch them again and wonder how the managed to shoot them ( some up to 6 minutes long ).

DVD extra., the most interesting is the short documentary explaining how the managed to shoot the long shots in one go


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