The Midwich Cuckoos - Sky Max
You already know this better than you think you do. Adapted (several times, actually) from the 1950's sci-fi novel of the same name by John Wyndham, the 'Cuckoos' appear in various versions of 'Village of the Damned' most recently as 1995 from auteur John Carpenter, but you could count at least another half a dozen shorts, tv mini-series and movies on this list.
So for originality, this doesn't score highly, unsurprisingly. So we would question why someone at Sky thought this had as yet untapped qualities that required re-telling, yet again.
Arguably, one silent, frowning, glaring child would appear to be bratty or spoilt. A collective however, just feels a whole lot more unnerving. Unnatural, uncomfortable, unusual. Carefree spirits full of joy and innocence is what we would expect, not dour, accusatory and solemn visions of fear.
Keeley Hawes and Max Beesley star in this very English remake of Wyndham's both famous and lauded story when one night, the entire village collapsed in a heap. Men, women, horses, dogs, you name it, all fainting in unison. When they come round again twelve hours later, all the women of child-bearing age in the town have fallen pregnant, even those that haven't had intercourse in years. Skip forward eight months and all of these women, despite the obvious option to abort these mystery pregnancies, start dropping babies like they're going out of fashion. Skip forward another few years and it is here we spend the majority of our time, in the company of this strange group of children, who appear to be able communicate telepathically and no have no love, care or worry for the world around them, not to mention their bewildered 'parents'.
Never truly scary, this is permanently creepy throughout and those that have little or no experience of the story will get the most from it as it takes all seven episodes to truly spill its beans. Suffice to say, it doesn't deviate too wildly from the original story. The pace matches the overtones and the deliberate plot benefits from it being unhurried, teasing its secrets.
Worth a viewing certainly, with some reliably strong performances that will keep you on the edge of your seat. Whilst never actually riveting this is as good an adaptation of Wyndham's novel as you'll currently find.