Having seen “Children of Men” this past weekend, I found it very hard to describe the movie. David Ansen writes a review that essentially sums up my thoughts on the film, except he comes to the exact opposite conclusion.
I found the acting to be excellent and the cinematography to be fantastic, on the verge of groundbreaking, yet the film never caught my attention. Not once during the film did I care what happened to the characters and I don’t think the story did either.
It was a pedestrian futuristic plot filmed brilliantly and that’s not enough to entice me. Being someone who loves the written word and becomes enthralled in a good story, I need more from a movie than phenomenal visuals.
Clearly, the movie is trying very hard to push sometime of political message beyond the standard chase fare, but I have no idea what it is. There were shades of anti-war, anti-government, anti-homeland security, pro-illegal immigration, pro-euthanasia and even a little pro-life message, along with a sense of unaviodable dispair. With all those messages crammed into one already weak plot it did more to hide the characters and the messages than anything else.
I left the movie with a sense of pointlessness. I felt like the film was almost trying to make a point of being pointless – throwing so many messages that none resonant, never explaining the purpose of the journey and never examining the motives of the characters’ actions.
Ansen concludes, “‘Children of Men’ leaves too many questions unanswered, yet it has a stunning visceral impact. You can forgive a lot in the face of filmmaking this dazzling.”
For me, I can’t forgive the plot. The filmmaking was truly original, but a movie must also put forth a coherent story. “Children of Men” never did that and it left me wishing the stunning visuals weren’t wasted on such a worthless script.