“Mass infertility…is an extraordinary premise for a film — a childless world — and it will leave some viewers feeling restive and underinformed. How, they will want to know, did this catastrophe arise? To director Alfonso Cuaron, however, the first rule of storytelling is: Go with the given. Don’t waste space on deep background, and don’t delay the action with a preface — remember Ben Kingsley, intoning like a royal robot at the start of Steven Spielberg‘s A.I.?
“Cuaron respects his audience, presuming that we are grown up enough (or ground down enough) to work out the horrors for ourselves.
“The people I know who have seen Children of Men have admired its grip, but they had to be dragged to the theatre; it’s a film that you need to see, not a film that you especially want to. I guess it should it be logged as sci-fi, yet by 2027 mankind is clearly beyond the reach of science, and the roughened pace of the film — photographed by Emmanuel Lubezki — leans away from fiction and toward the natural stutter of reportage.
“When a bomb explodes in Tony Scott‘s Deja Vu, it is tensely prepared for and filmed with a lingering gloat; when a bomb explodes in Children of Men, it bursts from nowhere on a dreary street. Even if you don’t buy the main conceit, the scumbled texture of the movie makes it feel not just plausible but recognizable, and Cuaron takes care never to paint the future as consolingly different.” — from Anthony Lane‘s review in the 1.8.07 issue of The New Yorker.