F.I.L.M. of the Week (July 23, 2010)

23 07 2010

You need to see “Children of Men” if you haven’t already.  You owe it to yourself.

I rewatched it a few days ago and fell in love with it all over again.  I chose it as this week’s “F.I.L.M.” because I found it as beautifully new as if I had just seen it – and also because it stars Julianne Moore, the subject of the LAMB’s Acting School.

We’ve seen the apocalyptic situations a million times, be it by zombies or bad weather.  But in Alfonso Cuaron’s world, based on the novel by author P.D. James, the end is near because of the sudden infertility of women.  The only surviving government is Britain, which has become a hotbed for illegal immigration.  So even there, society is collapsing.

The extraordinary chain of events in “Children of Men” are set in motion by the death of the world’s youngest person, Baby Diego.  Theo, played by the powerful Clive Owen, is a little more affected than he expected and winds up barely missing being killed by a bombing set up by the Fishes, a group of political activists led by his ex-wife Julian (Julianne Moore).  They kidnap him and recruit his services to take a refugee to the Human Project, a group committed to curing human’s infertility.  This refugee is carrying the key to survival – the first child in 18 years.

It’s a really cool movie to watch thanks to the visionary Cuaron and all the life he breathes into it.   He co-wrote the screenplay, and it’s incredibly rich, both in terms of plot and dialogue.  The acting is all flawless, from Julianne Moore’s moving bit part to Michael Caine’s lovable aging stoner to Owen’s riveting leading performance.  The cinematography is astounding, and it easy to notice how innovative it is.  Thanks to utilizing some long shots (as opposed to Hollywood’s incessant changing shots), Emmanuel Lubezki’s eye for the story really stands out.

But what I found so astonishing on second viewing was the thematic depth the movie had.  Be sure to watch for the religious overtones – they really can floor you.


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4 responses

23 07 2010
Simon/Ripley

Excellent. I love this movie, and it’s the only dystopian I can rewatch, it’s so beautiful.

24 07 2010
Kaiderman

Hard to say anything bad about this one. Owen at his best.

25 07 2010
Red

Aside from maybe LOTR, easily the best cinematography of the past decade. The ambush scene, as well as when Owen is walking out of the building with the newborn which freezes the battle momentarily, will be studied for quite some time.

25 07 2010
Marshall

I’d throw in “The Dark Knight” and “Benjamin Button” as two other favorites from the past decade. The Hong Kong building jump in IMAX is the single most exhilarating movie moment of my lifetime.

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