Minor spoilers ahead!
A violent world where man can no longer procreate, and we are about to go extinct.
That is the future of our world in Children of Men (2006), featuring Clive Owen and Michael Cane.
Set in 2027, when no child has been born for 18 years and science is at loss to explain the reason, African and East European societies collapse and their dwindling populations migrate to England and other wealthy nations. In a climate of nationalistic violence, a London peace activist turned bureaucrat Theo Faron, joins forces with his revolutionary ex-wife Julian in order to save mankind by protecting a woman who has mysteriously became pregnant.
Children of Men tells a fascinating story. It’s set in a near future and people are still like us. They don’t wear spacesuits, they still go to their boring dayjobs, and they still hate, envy and fear each other. Just a little exaggerated. In this world, children and pregnancy symbolize hope, hope for a better future.
Theo serves a Biblical role in this story. He is the one who will lead mankind to a new and better future. But he’s far from perfect, as is Kee, the pregnant girl, the Virgin Mary if you will. But she’s not holy – she doesn’t even know who the father of the child is because of the many men she slept with. This is what makes them such great characters, they’re very real.
Many of the action scenes are terrifying. You follow Theo with every step he takes, running through a rain of bullets and you’re there when a terrorist bomb goes off in a café he just left.
This movie was directed by Alfonso Cuarón, who you might also know for the movies A Little Princess and Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (part 3). Clive Owen, Michael Cane, Julianne Moore and particularly Clare-Hope Ashitey all play their roles convincingly. For Clive Owen, this might well be the best role he’s ever played.
The reason why this movie is so horrifying is because the chance of something like this happening to our real world, isn’t that small. What if something like this happened to us? What if total extinction of the human kind was impending? How would you spend the rest of your life, what would you do? Please share your ideas!
As a writer, I might even consider to stop writing. There would be no one to read my work in only a few years, anyway. I think I would move to Barbados and spend my years on the beach, just reading about our own history. Perhaps there would be a point where I would consider writing something for the future population of the world – surely a new race would develop and inhabit the world again.
Something I also wonder about is what this would mean. Is it just the way of nature, trying to decrease our destructive numbers? What if just before the human kind died out entirely, people would be able to reproduce again?
Have you already seen this movie? Did you like it?
If you haven’t seen it yet, I’d definitely recommend it!