Friday, December 29, 2006

The Children Of Men

Mix of action and future fiction. A surprising amount of violence with a main character who never holds a gun...he hardly even has shoes on for most of the movie. This isn't to say that he is the toughest man who dodges bullets and bends metal, he mostly limps around on cut feet, cries and opens car doors.

I wanted to see this movie after the first 10 seconds of preview. A future where humans are no longer able to reproduce; this is what I imagine happening in the nearing apocalypse, I of course like to imagine something worse where we are only able to have weak and ugly babies who are deformed by our unnatural lifestyle of canned food, petroleum and dirty air. Our babies will be so fucked they won't be able to live in the normal way they'll have to have something prosthetic like gills or fake legs. The kids will also HATE us, and probably kill everyone older than them. But enough about me. The Children of Men seemed like just the kind of movie I'd love with the kind of exhilaration and joie de vivre only the apocalypse can bring. My mom saw the preview with me and afterwards whispered "no thank you" to the screen.

Plot: Maybe the year 2027, everything is rather familar. There are big tvs in public places of urban centers, things are dirty, people drink coffee, and smoke cigarettes with more filter than tobacco. A series of calamities have passed over us. Horrible plagues killed all children, horrible things happened in other countries (including NY, which was probably destroyed). England seems to be one of the only places that is still semi-functioning so they are flooded with refugees, sometimes lovingly referred to as 'fugees' (like the band). It is a lot like nazi germany in that the military rounds people up, puts them in cages and ships them off to concentration camps. The entrance to the camps are a lot like Abu Ghraib with people being electrocuted with black bags over their head. Inside the camps it looks like the streets of Iraq with ground war fare.

The government secretly sponsors terrorist bombings. People are so disillusioned they have lots of tattoos and facial piercings. A group of well pierced yuppies turned revolutionaries call themselves the Fishes. The worst of them being a young man with blond dreadlocks who becomes more and more despicable as the movie progresses.

I wondered if I should be offended by the one pregnant woman being a young black girl. Is this simply a stereotype about black women being really fertile? She turns out to be alright because she says things like 'fuck' a lot and makes jokes that scare the shit out of people (which is the best kind of humor). What is rather offensive is that her hair is relaxed and in a really nice perm. Heaven forbid she have natural hair after the apocalypse.

Reasons the movie is good:
1. Scenes of violence that are very obviously similar to what is going on now (abu ghraib and iraq)
2. slightly future istic cars.
3. it makes one want to get knocked up for the good of man kind
4. no one is good, even the refugees are racist (one old lady in a cage is complaining in german that she has to be next to a 'schwatz')
5. clive owen is so attractive I would jump into hell or a tv screen to be blown up next to him if had the slightest chance of touching his extremely dirty, sweaty, and stubble covered face.


Blogger Rebecca said...

I want to see this so BADLY

2:58 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just saw children of men yesterday. It was pretty good. I was thinking about the black girl also. I think it was a compromise.. Wouldn't you be pissed if it was some white lady. So they wanted to make her and edgy ethnic person that people could relate to. I was most upset at ALL of the stereotypes in the pot smoking hippies, revolutionaries with dreads and coffee that just yell at meetings, all of the refugees acting crazy ( they couldn't possibly be people in bs circumstances, they had to be mf zombies), and the one portrait of islam being everyone angry with guns shooting in the air carrying a dead body.

9:19 PM  
Blogger sarah said...

I now what you mean about 'compromise' in the portayals in the movie...but I like to think of it even more as EVERYONE in the movie was bad and good...Like I said earlier, the old woman refugee who is racist, complaining that she has to be next to a "schwatz". I liked how the hippies, especially the ones with dreds were actually BAD (they guy who kills Julianne Moore and is a total asshole). I think there are other muslims in the camp that we see before hand, but we do see them rioting with guns as they carry a dead body...but they show this after showing how HORRIBLE the camp is (and then they show us the image that looks just like something out of the news in palestine) I thought that helped make americans who are so far removed from things in the news like Iraq and Palestine see how it can really happen (so close to our beloved main character who is close to a zombie too, luckily he has something to live for, a baby...) they build the story around the audience and then bam them with flash images of what is going on right now...odd it felt like a movie maker trying to make the real world seem real to america through fiction, sad the way it actually worked for me.

9:35 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

liked it quite a bit. It made my body tense and the woman next to me kept laughing at all of the most brutal shit. Which made me more tense. I'd like to talk about it. I don't know anyone else who has seen it. Did you stay for the credits and hear the Pulp song? I think Clive Owen is beautiful and gave a really good performance. The photography was awesome and the story was genuinely moving. I'm generally a big fan of dystopian dramas delivered with some amount of real emotion. Maybe there was a little bit too much comic relief. But I did like Michael Caine. Although the movie was incredibly violent the main characters were not. I liked that. It was an action movie where the hero didn't go around killing people or beating anybody up. Except for Sid, who he hit with an old battery. I wish theo hadn't died. Only partly because of my attachment to the character. It seems cheap.

Sadly our hero has died, but man will live on! Through his son's name, attached to a girl, who will growth up to have more children. He's the godfather of an entirely new civilization. Isn't it wonderful?

9:35 PM  
Blogger sarah said...

n DC, Maryland, and Virginia it was only playing in ONE theater (exclusive engagement)! wtf. I saw a trailer for it a while ago and REALLY REALLY wanted to see it, there aren't really movies I've want to see in theaters for a long time..I can't remember when.
1. I could watch clive owen for almost ever in that role, he is-was great
2. I like how he didn't have shoes for a lot of the movie...and how that was actually a big deal, interesting how something like that can have more power/pain than him carrying a gun.
3. I didn't like Cain until the end (I cried) but I guess he wouldn't have worked unless all the silly beginning. Did you know they forbid the playing of 'Ruby Tuesday' on the radio after 9/11?
4. What else did you consider comic relief?
5. I didn't mind Owen dying...for some very weak reason it reminded me of the jews wandering through the dessert with Moses, everyone who had been a slave in Egypt, had known the bad life, had to die before they could get to israel...owen could not live in the new world, but in a fit of sadness and truth it is people like him who are needed to bring the new world into being.
6. I didn't really think the whole having babies was a permanent problem..I imagined there were more/others, and that this one little girl wouldn't have to sire a new race....the old world just didn't deserve to reproduce until it was dead.

9:36 PM  

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