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'CHILDREN OF MEN' (****)

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Posted: Friday, January 5, 2007 10:00 pm

The end of the year is always a frustrating time for me. I do my best to get the word out to readers about the year's best films, but so many of the potentially great ones are released so late in the year that I don't get a chance to see them before deadline, unless I want to hop a plane to Los Angeles. Such is the case with Alfonso Cuaron's "Children of Men," which topped my list of the most promising movies I didn't see before drafting my top 10 list, and would have made a showing on the list proper if I had seen it in time. It's a film of infinite imagination, and a welcome reminder of why we go to the movies in the first place: to see something we've never seen before.

The year is 2027, and the world is in chaos. After years of unexplained infertility, the human race is dying. Governments have lost control in the midst of a slow but sure Armageddon, and Britain stands as the only nation maintaining some semblance of civilization. Nonetheless, it's an Orwellian police state in which bombings are commonplace and immigrants are rounded up into what amount to death camps.

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