Everyone bailed on me, so I went to the Victoria Gardens AMC and saw Children of Men by myself. In a way, I’m glad I did. This is a torrid, heartbreaking, unforgettable film. Director Alfonso CuarÃ³n has crafted a bleak, dystopian near-feature ravaged by a plague of infertility. After 18 years of barrenness, a baby is born into this crumbling, incredibly violent, unforgiving world. We follow the steps of two people who seek to deliver the child, carry it to safety, and ensure hope for the dying Earth.
The film is grueling and relentless — well-deserving of the R-rating. But the violence only heightens the sense of the fragility of life. This baby must survive. But amidst the mobs, bloodshed and rampant evil, we get a sense that the deck is stacked. How can hope possibly prevail?
It’s a theme repeatedly broached by those in the arts. According to Jeffrey Overstreet in his Christianity Today review, “Children of Men is based on a story penned by P.D. James, a professing Christian better known for her mystery novels.” However, in his interview with CuarÃ³n, Overstreet reports that the director stated that we should place our hope not in God, but in “the next generation.” In this sense, though there are many thematic Christian elements, the film appears to be schizophrenic.
It is reflective of Hollywood’s violent contradiction.
The sanctity of life is a consistent theme in Hollywood films. How many times has a movie left us with the message that one life matters, that everyone’s special, that we all have a sense of destiny. A film as innocuous as The Revenge of the Sith culminates with the birth of a child (Luke Skywalker, who will save his people from the Empire). The Butterfly Effect reminds us that every action — every choice — is infinitely important. Darren Aronofsky describes the central theme of his new film The Fountain, as “the sanctity of life.” Some have gone as far as to suggest that in Children of Men: Hollywood Goes Pro-Life. The official site for the film opens with a glowing embryo descending onscreen.
Here’s the catch: Holllywood celebrities are decidedly pro-abortion. Christina Aguilera, Jennifer Aniston, Kevin Bacon, Alec Baldwin, Ellen DeGeneres, Whoopi Goldberg, Charlize Theron, Uma Thurman, the list is extensive. Hollywood celebs are typically the biggest contributors to Democratiic, left-wing groups. In fact, Julianne Moore, one of the stars of Children of Men, has been on Planned Parenthood’s board of directors and an active fund-raiser for the nation’s largest pro-abortion group.
So, while Hollywood continues to tell us that life is precious, fragile and infinitely important, it supports abortion on demand and actively funds organizations that terminate unborn human beings. Something is wrong. Behind the message of hope, of flowery feel-good films, is a violent contradiction.