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One of the more restless directors this side of Steven Soderbergh, Cuaron has found success working at many budget levels and genres, from studio franchises to indie road movies.

With the sci-fi dystopian epic “Children of Men,” the Mexican hel-mer delivers the most accomplished and formally ambitious effort of his career. He employs the scruffy, handheld aesthetic he first put to use on low-budget pics like “Y tu mama tambien” to tell the story of government bureaucrat who must get the one fertile woman on the planet to safety.

The result is a film that functions both as a gripping action pic as well as an intimate, character-driven story of redemption. “I wasn’t interested in doing a sci-fi fiction film, I was interested in doing a film about hope,” says Cuaron. “I wanted to create a journey into the state of things today and have the audience make their own conclusions about where we are now and how we are going to survive.”