Date: Tue 28 Aug 2018

"The Children Act" By Ian McEwan

A review by June Venters QC

Having practised in the field of criminal and family law all of my career I have often watched films and TV dramas which I have found frustrating because of their failure to portray accurately the roles played by the key players within the family and criminal justice system. This doesn’t mean to say that I haven’t found previous films and TV dramas entertaining, Judge John Deed being just such one!

The Children Act film, for me, stands alone. The portrayal of the High Court Judge by Emma Thompson was "spot on." She managed to portray the obvious skills and intelligence of a High Court Judge commanding the highest of respect whilst coping with her own domesticity falling apart.

As a Family High Court Judge her workload was considerable and meant that she often worked a 6/7 day week and was clearly instrumental in her domestic crisis with her husband having by necessity, neglected both him and her marriage.

More often than not, she had to decide cases involving children. Whilst to members of the public her decisions may have seemed obvious, [such as deciding a blood transfusion was necessary for a child who faced certain death without it]the law requires more rigor than mere pragmatism. In arriving at her decision[s] she demonstrated the expertise required in considering the sensitivities of culture and religion when handing down her Judgments.

If I had to summarise this film I would say that it fairly and accurately captures the significance and importance of the decisions High Court Judges have to make on a daily basis. It also shows that such Judges are not immune to human frailties and above all, for me, it reinforced the role the rule of law plays in all of our lives.

A film I thoroughly recommend.

Privacy and GDPR

How we use your contact information

Due to the new GDPR Law coming into effect in March 2018, we have changed the way we ask for your information.

Venters Solicitors records your contact information for one purpose: To respond to your enquiries and follow up potentially with legal advice

Venters Solicitors does not give this information to any third-party organisation. If you wish to have your information permanently deleted from our database, please email here. We reserve the right to make a small charge for this process.

If you are happy to for us to respond to you via email, simply click the slider to "yes" on the form. If you don’t do this you will not receive emails from us.

Cookie Policy

A cookie is a small data file containing a single number (and no personal information) this cookie is never re-used on this web site or by third parties. When you close your browser (Internet Explorer/Firefox/Safari etc), the cookie is destroyed.

We also use Google Analytics on our web sites to count traffic visiting the site and to give us information in how we can improve the visitor experience. This cookie does not know or record any of your personal information, it merely records which pages are visited.This site uses cookies. Cookies are small data tokens that are used to pass information from page to page as you visit a web site.

Contact Info
  • Address: 213 Camberwell Road, London SE5 0HG
  • Phone: 020 7277 0110
  • Email: