The Children Act (2018) Review

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Judge Fiona Maye must attempt to balance her crumbling marriage along with one of the most difficult decisions of her career an ill teenage boy who is refusing a blood transfusion because of his religious beliefs.

High court judge Fiona Maye makes many difficult decisions which change and shape lives within the courtroom. But when it comes to her own decisions and life she has neglected her husband Jack for years now. When he relieves that he is going to have an affair her world is turned upside down. It seemed like such a cruel thing to do, but we can see that he wants to warn her before hand instead of telling her afterwards. Having to then continue with her tough job with this on her mind really pushes her to the limits.

Jehovah’s Witnesses do not believe in blood transfusions as they see blood as the gift of life from God and that it should not be mixed with anyone else’s blood. That is even in life for death situations. This puts Adam Henry in such a difficult situation, considering he is three months away from his 18 birthday in the eyes of the law he is still only a child and therefore not allowed to make his own decision on this. The case is in court to allow the judge to decide what to do in this very unique case. It is tough to listen to the different arguments from the hospital but then hearing his parents and the views which basically mean they are willing to let their son die! You cannot get away from that fact at all. The decisions made my Fiona really do change everything for Adam, when she does something unexpected and actually wants to go to the hospital to meet him and work out if he understands his decision or is doing it for his parents or the Elders in the church he is part of.

Since seeing the trailer for this film I have been very interested in seeing the film, especially with everything around the performance from Emma Thompson. I can happily confirm that she is truly outstanding in the role. Everything she does shows so much emotional conflict and having to deal with so many upsetting things at the same time. I guess that is what always seems to happen in life that you always get so many things thrown at you at the same time, you can never just deal with one thing! Fionn Whitehead put in an equally brilliant performance as Adam and that was something that really did make the scenes with Thompson even better. A very talented young actor, who certainly has a very promising career ahead of him. Stanley Tucci in the supporting role really doing what he does best!

Location wise we get some lovely views of London and as a very special added bonus Newcastle as well, something I was not expecting. I really loved the shot on the train and then seeing the other bridges with the Metro as well. Certainly made for a nice surprise to see my closest city on the big screen! Something I wish happened more often, but part of the story when Fiona must head north from London to oversee some of the cases.

A truly moving film that will make you think about religion and decisions around illness and life/death. I was blown away my Thompson and really see this film as an early awards season contender to be brutally honest, at least in the UK that is. I hope they do reward Thompson for her breathtaking performance!

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