Sensing Religion in Alfonso Cuarón’s “Children of Men”

  • Author(s): M. Gail Hamner
  • When: 2015-12
  • Where: Religions
  • This essay attends closely to the affective excess of Children of Men, arguing that this excess generates two modalities of religion—nostalgic and emergent—primarily through a sensitive use of color and music. These affective religious modalities are justly termed “religion” not only because they are sutured to overtly Christian names, images, and thematics, but also because they signal the sacred and transcendence, respectively. The essay reads the protagonist, Theo Faron (Clive Owen), as navigating these two modalities of religion, not as a hero but as what Giorgio Agamben terms “whatever-being.” Noting Theo’s religious function draws attention to transformations of political being and human hope.

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