Not the Children of Men

This scene is not abnormal many places in the world, but in the welfare paradise of Denmark, where riots followed the demolition of a building that had been ‘occupied by left-wing activists since the 1980s’, it certainly is.

It could have been a scene from Children of Men, which I finally saw last night. Apart from Clive Owen (always sexy) and Michael Caine’s brilliant performance, I was pretty disappointed by the film. It was too obviously “symbolic” (the rebels sport dreadlocks and nose rings) and there were a few stilted moments that point to a bad script.

I’m quite intrigued by the futurist impulse, especially how the calamity that awaits has become so standardised. Perhaps that’s not unusual or even insightful: just amplify whatever trends are around us (global warming, artificial food), throw in a couple of gadgets and you’re in the future. But that’s kind of the problem. It’s not really interesting. Animal Farm was interesting. The Handmaid’s Tale was interesting. Brazil was excellent. And they all continue to be. This one I relegate to the Wha’eva category.

Still, the crossover between Children of Men and the Danish story is pretty interesting. It might behoove us well, as they say, to pay attention to the fires that burn in nanny states.