The Blu-ray Disc
Children of Men is presented in 1080p high definition with an aspect ratio of 1.85:1. Fans of the film need to own this in high def as the picture is spectacular throughout with superb clarity and sharpness. The dingy, downtrodden production design results in a dank color palette that features notable grays and blacks. The lack of color though hardly makes the picture seem any less vibrant. Skin tones and black levels are consistent across the film, and even the scenes with the smallest amount of light retain a crisp feel without any apparent grain.
The audio is presented in Dolby DTS-HD, and it’s a highly active mix, with frequent ambient sound and subwoofer work thanks to the barrage of explosions and gunfire, especially in the second half of the film. Front channel dialogue is clear, and the entire mix maintains a strong level of consistency even across dramatic volume changes.
All of the special features from the previous DVD release have been carried over, and remain in standard definition. The only new features are the rather pointless BD-Live and the dreaded Universal U-Control, which brings the extras into a picture-in-picture format while the film plays. The extras are pretty solid all around, with some – two featurettes that mostly feature interviews with prominent philosophers – that focus on the themes of the film and some – a look at the production design, an examination of the long-take scenes and a fascinating piece on how they created the birth scene – that are more technical in nature. The only throwaways are three short deleted scenes and a short featurette on the characters of Theo and Julian that doesn’t have much to say.
The Bottom Line
Children of Men has lots to sink your teeth into, and the excellent Blu-ray transfer means it’s a must-add to the shelf.