April 4, 2007

"Children of Men," now out on DVD

Alfonso Cuaron's movie version of Tory Baroness P.D. James' quiet sci-fi novel Children of Men about a world where no baby has been born in two decades is is just about as intellectually brain-dead as V for Vendetta (which I reviewed for American Conservative here), politically correct tripe all the way. If the human race were dying out, what would the biggest issue be? According to Cuaron it would be ... mistreatment of illegal immigrants!

It doesn't get much stupider than that, folks.

But Children of Men has a few advantages over V for Vendetta as a movie. Children of Men has Clive Owen, who has a classic movie star's face -- handsome but world-weary, Cary Grant meets Humphrey Bogart. (Why isn't he James Bond instead of that thuggish-looking guy?) V for Vendetta, in contrast, has somebody in a stupid Guy Fawkes mask.

Second, Children of Men has some distinctive visual direction with loooong tracking shots that excite people who play first-person shooter video games.

As somebody has pointed out, however, this first person gimmick undermines the first advantage -- Clive Owen's great face -- because to get a reaction shot from the star during the two 10 minutes segments without cuts, the cameraman has to laboriously swing the camera around 180 degrees to look at Clive, then back 180 degrees to the action. The one long tracking shot that knocked me out was not the two celebrated shoot-em-ups but a roughly 90 second funereal shot of Clive after his friend has been killed as he wanders aimlessly into the forest -- toward the camera so you can watch him emote the whole way. That's what you pay a movie star to do.

My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer


Anonymous said...

Steve -- this is the greatest problem in films. PC killing creativity.

OF COURSE Liberal propaganda instead of dramatic issues have to take central stage. One of the things that made 300 popular I suspect is the un-PC attitudes towards it's villain.

What a shame Owen was not chosen as Bond. But I'm not surprised. The dominance of the gay aesthetic in Hollywood (Ovitz was right about that at least) has left Hollywood with skewed ideas of leading men: pretty boys like Clooney, Damon, Affleck, DiCaprio; thugs like Craig, or child-men like Sandler or Nick Cage.

Old-style actors playing men have a difficult time in Hollywood. Which rarely knows how to handle them. Look at Mark Walberg, Clive Owen, etc.

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Brian Kravets said...

"It doesn't get much stupider than that, folks."

Sure it does. Your blog is more stupid.

The immigrants being mistreated in the film are not illegal. They are legal citizens of the UK who are being murdered, deported, jailed, and tortured simply because they are not English born. That's a pretty big issue to me.

You must have also completely missed the themes of population control, totalitarianism, femininity, and hope. There is also the jab at leftist organizations that exploit the very causes they claim to support (the fishes).

The fact that you find this film intellectually brain-dead, actually speaks more on your own intellectual brain power. Maybe if you dub a little deeper than "the cameraman has to laboriously swing the camera around 180 degrees to look at Clive, then back 180 degrees to the action," you would have discovered there is much more to this film.

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