The Children Act film review: A Moral Compass

The Children Act

The Children Act film director: Richard Eyre
The Children Act film cast: Emma Thompson, Stanley Tucci, Ben Chaplin, Fionn Whitehead, Rosie Cavaliero

Adapted by Ian McEwan from his 2014 novel and uniformly destined by Richard Eyre, The Children Act stars Emma Thompson as Fiona Maye, a British decider who contingency confirm either to need Adam, a 17-year-old with leukemia, to accept a blood transfusion. Adam is a Jehovah’s Witness, and blood transfusion runs opposite to a religion’s beliefs and his parents’ beliefs — and therefore his own.

Fiona visits him during a sanatorium before digest a verdict. The confront and a decision, and a asymmetries in a consequences for Adam (Fionn Whitehead, from Dunkirk) and Fiona, resonate nonetheless a rest of a action.

The Children Act creates for a some-more wieldy film than this year’s progressing On Chesil Beach, that McEwan also blending from his possess book, in that box relying on maintaining rhythms and sequential jumps improved matched to a page. Here, a beautifully internalised opening from Thompson and a several efforts to prominence a cinematic intensity in Fiona’s agonise — a consummate plays out during a piano show — can’t overrule a neat ironies of McEwan’s design.


Fiona is a protector of children who has no children. She is a means listener, nonetheless is too veteran and emotionally rhythmical to truly hear what Adam has to say. And as Fiona’s father (Stanley Tucci) puts it, in a blunt matter of themes, Fiona is an management on family problems who neglects to residence her own. Yet a film finally punts on grappling with a ambiguities. The culmination feels organic rather than haunting.

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