The Children Act - Well Done, Provocative, Challenging

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

The Children Act, from A24, presents the story of life within a power couple’s marriage, of an overloaded and dedicated High Court Children's Judge her equally high achieving husband, the demands of profession, of martial expectations, of life.

Directed by Sir Richard Eyre, The Children Act stars Emma Thompson, Stanley Tucci, Fionn Whitehead, Ben Chaplin, Eileen Walsh, Avital Abergel, Raphael Desprez, Dominic Carter, and Renna Lalbihari and was written by Ian McEwan.

The film begins in court with High Court Judge Fiona Maye, played by Emma Thompson, in the midst of determining the rights of conjoined twins. As she faces the court, family and media, she, before her ruling, is already the enemy.


The Predator Review - A Wild Sci-Fi Thrill Ride of Epic Proportions


Her equally high achieving husband Jack, played by Stanley Tucci, a professor of some antiquated subject only interesting to doctoral students or other intellectuals has adapted to the role of caregiver to his wife, Fiona, whom he confesses a genuine love, as  she has become inundated with a calendar of cases for the London's most vulnerable citizens and by virtue of the Queen, she is the appointed to determine, overriding parents, religion and society, what is the best interest for the child.

With her decision on the separation of conjoined twins expected the following day, she is deep in thought, when Jack talks about playing doubles on Saturday, which she mumbles a response really a recognition of the voice not the words, and as the hours pass, he is alone in bed again.

Debating as she writes the brief, she understands life for each is not necessarily dependent on the other as one can survive apart. She renders this ruling to which she is vilified as a baby murderer.

Exiting out the back, in order to avoid the growing protesters, glare of media inquiry and harsh rebukes from the family, she makes her way home. This day, Jack, decides today is the day to explain his feelings.

Finally with both at home Fiona is buried in a brief when Jack explains to her he is just going to say it as he explains he is going to have an affair. It is not because he doesn't love her, because he does. They don't have sex anymore, and as he explains it has been 11 months, he marked it in his journal under event.

The sexless married life is not what he signed on for and now, with Ms. Doctoral Student, showing up bright eyed with a smile, intellectual conversation and sex. Well, it isn't the temptation as much as it is just sex. She's willing and the love of his love isn't.

Fiona, while hearing is having difficulty understanding. No excuses over her caseload, she just feels that this season is an evolution.

In the middle of the discussion, the phone rings an it is her clerk. A case which needs to be expedited as doctors for a 17 year old cancer patient child, needs an injunction to begin life saving blood transfusions. Even with only a few months before he can make his own decisions now he still falls under the Children Act, and his parents, Jehovah's Witness are refusing life-saving measures.

Of course with her personal life falling apart, her usual even demeanor is more demanding as we see to the benefit of most cases who appear on the next day.

Jack, of course seemed to think this sex affair, will run its course. Fiona, has different ideas. She immediately changes the locks and makes the moves to formalize his requests.

At this point the film turns toward the case, a teen, Adam, played by Fionn Whitehead, refuses the treatments in commitment to his faith which collides with the derailment of Fiona's marriage.

With only months before the child is able to make his own informed decisions, she is at this point the designate left to determine what is best.

This is where The Children Act shifts. We have seen the depth and stress of her caseload. The Children Act presents a well made film, with Emma Thompson handling the dramatic seamlessly and with flair as she moves between situations.

The audience is also left debating the decision, as we have seen, courts and those who swear an allegiance to uphold the law, truth and best interest, become corrupt. Is her decision fair or based on her present emotional struggles? Is she trying to stop a runaway train or finally squash religious rights?


White Boy Rick Review - Solid, Edgy, No Filters


Although much is discussed about the nature of the circumstances, an informed decision for a child who desires to please his parents, is home-schooled, and has only socialized with those of like-mindedness, presents a real dilemma. In this case, the child is 17 and remains therefore the child's welfare shall be the courts paramount consideration.

Obviously the film is the meaty, heavy drama awards seasons voters look to and Ms. Thompson's performance throughout is smooth, continuous, without any uncomfortable  transitions.

There are moments, however, when she kicks it up a notch and something different is seen. Moments when she fades and an authentic portrayal of a High Court Judge, of one with an encyclopedic knowledge and understanding of the law appears. The onset of receiving the case from her clerk is one of those scenes. It is dramatic, on point and extremelywell done.

Even while it is an ensemble cast the film becomes a three-hander. The main players, Ms. Thompson, Stanley Tucci and Fionn Whitehead, each breathing life into these words and elevating the film.

The Children Act is challenging, provocative, and significant.  As the status quo is challenged on all sides, personally and professionally, and as always the balance of another life, this time, metaphorically and literally rest in her decisions.

The Children Act opens Friday, September 14, 2018. See it.

 

Haute Tease

  • Beltway Insider: Trump/Pols at Odds, Border Wall, Rep’s Gone Wild; Brexit Looms; Stalking

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    President Trump returned to Washington after meeting with Troops in Iraq to begin the contentious budget wars that have resulted in a partial government shutdown and created a deeper divide between the White House and both Houses.

     
  • Shiver Review – A Terrifying Trip into a Serial Killer’s Mind

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    SHIVER,” from Cyclone Productions and Bandersnatch Films, presents a nail-biting, psychological thriller that pits a blood thirsty serial killer against the skill, wit and determination of the detectives and a single surviving victim.

     
  • The International Art Festival Category Winners' Exhibition to Hold Opening Reception

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    The opening reception for the 2013 International Art Festival Winner’s Exhibition will be held on Wednesday, August 14, beginning at 6:00pm at the Museum of Russian Art.                                 

     
  • Valentine’s Day Gift Giving - Love Is In The Air with a Jetsmarter and Delano South Beach Getaway Package

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Two luxurious brands, Delano South Beach and JetSmarter, have hooked up this Valentine's Day for an unforgettable exquisite romantic "For the Love of Luxury" Getaway guaranteed to pamper and please with privacy, concierge service, in-room check-in, champagne and more.

     
  • Kim Wall Murder: Peter Madsen - Mad Scientist or King of the Fetish

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Denmark's most sensational murder trial has yet to begin and the world media is ramping up its coverage on Peter Madsen, the Danish inventor who is currently held in the horrific dismemberment and murder of Swedish journalist Kim Wall.

     
  • Beltway Insider: Trump Fails America; Charlottesville; Swedish Journo Murdered; Glen Campbell

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    President Donald J. Trump known for his twitter rants has once again used the micro messaging platform to send out veiled disapproval of the recent violence acts in Charlottesville, Virginia, that resulted in three deaths and 19 injuries.

     
  • The Low Down on Caffeine Overdose – Hype, Scare Tactic or Possibility

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Too much caffeine caused the death of a 16-year-old high school student from South Carolina who collapsed during class last month, according to the county coroner. Davis Allen Cripe died from a caffeine-induced cardiac event causing a probable arrhythmia.

     
  • The Peace Collective Releases “All Together Now” Commemorating Century Mark of Christmas Truce

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    The Peace Collective, a group of well known British musicians, commemorating the century mark of the World War I Christmas Truce when not a shot was fired, have re-recorded The Farm's "All Together Now" for December 14, 2014 release.

     
  • Chinese, Australia Officials Confirm Black Box Pings

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Chinese and Australian authorities have both confirmed to the media picking up "pings" associated with what they cautiously hope is from the back box of missing Malaysian Airliner MH370 that disappeared one month ago.

     
  • Paris Fashion Week Coverage LASKARIS Fall/Winter 2017/18 Couture Collection - Prism

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    The PRISM is the key that opens the door to the collection of the Greek designer Laskaris. A journey to a surreal world, where the dream is omnipresent, the act of creation is spontaneous, and paradoxically anchored in the present.

     
  • Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children Review – An Oddly Inviting Trip From the Genius of Tim Burton

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children, from 20th Century Fox and Chernin Entertainment, brings to the screen an odd tale of gifted children, their unique house mistress, a wayfaring, time traveling, stranger and a race against the clock.

     
  • Peppermint Review - Jennifer Garner is One Badass Avenger in this Solid Vigilante Action Film

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Peppermint, from STX Entertainment and Huayi Brothers, presents the story of justice and the paths many travel to right the wrongs, to avenge the senseless, to expose the corrupt and well-hidden, and to ensure their story is heard.

     
  • Jeff Renfroe, Director of The Colony, Talks Behind-the-Scenes Insights of Creating an Ice Age Thriller

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    “The Colony,” from RLJ Entertainment and Sierra Pictures, playing in theaters everywhere presents a terrifying apocalyptic winter thriller created by Director Jeff Renfroe that captures the breakdown of society, showcases a sub human species and exemplifies against all odds survival.

     
  • Beltway Insider: Obama Addresses Nation on Sandy Hook Massacre; Hillary Clinton Injured; Susan Rice Out as Successor

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    The looming Fiscal Cliff and Washington business as usual was disrupted Friday when news of a tragic school shooting in Newtown, Connecticut brought the nation and the president to tears.

     
  • The Wife Review - Stunning, Captivating, A Must See

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    The Wife, from Sony Pictures Classic and Anonymous Content, presents the story of marriage and compromise, of how one compromise for the greater good becomes a life of choices, of literary passions, of fulfilment, of acceptability and tolerance.