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Gattaca is set in the near future, in a society where a person’s genes determine his or her social standing, as well as the extent of success in life. Gattaca tells the story of the life of Vincent (Ethan Hawke), who was conceived without the aid of the technology of genetic engineering, something the people relied heavily on. As one who faces extreme genetic discrimination and injustice due to his inferior genes, the only way to achieve his life-long dream of being an astronaut is to break the law and impersonate a “valid” (The genetically superior beings that dominate the top of the social ladder)
Through a series of events, he effectively assumes the identity of Jerome Eugene Morrow (Jude Law), who willingly supplies Vincent his very own set of DNA. With superior DNA at hand, access into the Gattaca Aerospace Corporation was natural.
After yet another series of events as well as numerous close calls, Vincent’s identity of an “invalid” nearly got compromised. This was when he met his younger brother, Anton (Loren Dean) (who was conceived with the ‘best genes’ of his parents), who was an investigator dispatched to investigate a murder case in Gattaca. Shocked by how his “invalid” brother managed to get ahead of him, despite his genetic superiority, Vincent and Anton settled their competition as they once did when they were children, by seeing who can swim furthest out into the ocean. Once again, Vincent manages to beat his brother, and, once again, saves him from drowning.
A key conversation in Gattaca goes like this:
Anton: 'Vincent! How are you doing this, Vincent? How have you done any of this? We have to go back!'
Vincent: 'It's too late for that, we're closer to the other side.'
Anton: 'What other side? Do you want to drown us both?!'
Vincent: 'You want to know how I did it? This is how I did it, Anton. I never saved anything for the swim back.'
Indeed, Vincent did not save anything for the swim back, and went the furthest in life he ever possibly could—with his inferior genes. Jerome, contented that he helped a true friend attain his goal in life, ended his life in his home incinerator, wearing his silver medal, which turns gold in the flame.Back to top
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