Monday, April 12, 2010

The Children (2008)

I would really like someone with children to watch this movie and tell me what they think. This is a creepy little hidden gem from England. Set in the country, its snowy and chilly, and there seems to be some airborne (possibly its never explained) illness that effects children of a certain age. Its really interesting too how the parents are portrayed initially, very yuppie, semi-crunchy parents: one is trying to teach their child Mandarin Chinese, the other couple decides to homeschool their children, and I dunno, raise them in a yurt. We've all met parents like this. But what then, if for no discernible reason, your young children suddenly start to turn into murderous zombies...what would you do? Thats the central question, which also takes to the next level the idea that in some ways kids, with their imaginary friends and what not, can be sort of creepy. The dinner scene that kicks everything into gear really brings this home. Whether you have kids or not: ever been somewhere for dinner with some children who act up and aren't eating, but the adults try to continue talking, but the kids are misbehaving somehow and there is this sort-of tension as everyone tries to ignore it? Ratchet the ominous foreboding up a little and thats what you have. Its a nice little film that never outstays its welcome: its only about 82 minutes long. And its really creepy. Thanks in no small part to the cinematography of Nanu Segal, it looks amazing. But the direction Tom Shankland is what really hits it home. I've been wanting to see it for a while and it just happened to crop up on "On Demand" in the past week or so.

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