28-year old Kathy H. (Carey Mulligan) reminisces about her life, starting in her unique boarding school, Hailsham. The children were raised strictly but well-cared for and raised to know they have a valuable purpose in life. A distressed new teacher tells the children what that purpose is, but it seems they already know and accept it utterly. A childhood love triangle between Kathy and her classmates Ruth and Tommy has a lasting effect on the three; years later as they fulfill their destinies, Kathy is moved to ponder if they are really so different from everyone else.
I was completely shattered by this movie; it left me shocked and sad and very, very frightened. It's about a world in which people have extended life spans thanks to the likes of Kathy and her friends who comply with their inescapable duty, much to our horror. Mulligan, Knightly (Ruth), and Andrew Garfield (Tommy) are all wonderfully subtle and convincing. The script is clever and intriguing, and terrifying in its realism.
This is an exceptional sci-fi story similar in tone to "1984," and it's also a tender love story. If you're looking for a thought-provoking, well-made movie, you'll enjoy "Never Let Me Go."