Based on Ian McEwan’s 2014 novel, and led by the Academy Award winning actress, Emma Thompson, “The Children Act” revolves around Thompson’s character, Judge Fiona Maye, who whilst in the midst of dealing with her own marital crisis, has to rule on a decision made by a 17 year old minor, Adam Henry’s (portrayed by Fionn Whitehead) refusal to have a blood transfusion for leukemia because of his Jehovah’s Witness religious beliefs.
Thompson decides to visit Adam in Hospital to determine whether he is being influenced by his parents or not. Adam forms a special bond with Thompson, who is a keen listener and begs her not to leave. Thompson returns to court and orders, in Adam’s best interests, the doctor to administer the medical treatment.
Meanwhile Thompson’s husband, Jack (portrayed by Stanley Tucci) returns home to a cold welcome by his wife.
Adam recovers and tries to make contact with Thompson, who refuses his advances.
Thompson travels from London to Newcastle and is followed by Adam, who she sends back to London.
Shortly after her return, she is due to play at a recital when she receives news that Adam has had a relapse and has been admitted to Hospice. Now 18 years old, Adam is refusing treatment stating that it is his own choice.
Thompson leaves the recital to spend time with Adam who is gravely ill and when she returns home, she breaks down and is comforted by Jack.
Thompson and Jack reconcile and attend Adam’s funeral together.