Sunday, January 07, 2007


Children of Men. A world without children... check back with me around 3 in the morning, when the boy is shrieking at about 140 decibels.

Aw, I'm just kidding. That would totally suck, if the whole human race became infertile and there weren't any more kids being born. (Bonus cheap, topical and obvious joke: Not even to Britney Spears!) It's a great sci-fi concept, though, and one that could spring a story in about a zillion directions.

This movie chose to focus in on the micro level, rather than the larger Brave New World that would surely shape itself under such conditions. Sure, there were lots of political overtones, armed resistance fighters, underground hideouts, gun battles in the streets, and, in general, a whole Terminator 4 feel to the thing. But at its core, it was basically a story about one man and one woman, thrown into the middle of this melee.

There were a couple of set pieces here that were jaw-dropping. The first was early on, when a car carrying our heroes is suddenly attacked by some sort of rebel scum materializing out of the woods. This was staged in what appeared to be a single unbroken shot from inside the car, first speeding in reverse away from the attack, then fighting off some leftover Mad Max motorcycle assasins, then speeding forward into the attack. Wow. Pretty intense. Another highlight was the big battle near the end, with Clive Owen ducking machine gun fire, tanks, RPGs, collapsing buildings, and hostile gunmen while the camera followed him through the rubble. (And by the way, this movie will (finally) make him a star.)

The whole thing worked pretty well, but by staying small, the story didn't really resolve itself with any huge payoff. I realize that was intentional, but I've kind of been conditioned to want the Death Star to blow up or the ring to be destroyed, or at least something more than just a boat appearing in the fog. Still, two thumbs, eight other fingers and all ten toes up.

Stop The War.

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