Astronaut Sam Bell has a quintessentially personal encounter toward the end of his three-year stint on the Moon, where he, working alongside his computer, GERTY, sends back to Earth parcels of a resource that has helped diminish our planet's power problems.
In the not-too-distant future, a less-than-perfect man wants to travel to the stars. Society has categorized Vincent Freeman as less than suitable given his genetic make-up and he has become one of the underclass of humans that are only useful for menial jobs. To move ahead, he assumes the identity of Jerome Morrow, a perfect genetic specimen who is a paraplegic as a result of a car accident. With professional advice, Vincent learns to deceive DNA and urine sample testing. Just when he is finally scheduled for a space mission, his program director is killed and the police begin an investigation, jeopardizing his secret.Written by
Many of the "futuristic" buildings in the film are actually quite old. Many of these represent a type of postmodern architecture called "brutalism", which was popular in the 1950s. The two massive arches seen behind Jerome and Irene during their talk are actually the spillway of the Sepulveda Dam in Los Angeles, which was built in the 1930s. See more »
After Irene and Vincent have sex, you can see that the bedroom walls are pure glass (including the corner of the house). You can also see a view of the beach and ocean. Later when Vincent is on the beach scrubbing himself with sand, the house is viewed from the beach. At that point you can see pillars in between pieces of glass on the house, including the corner. See more »
You keep your work station so clean, Jerome.
It's next to godliness. Isn't that what they say?
Godliness. I reviewed your flight plan. Not one error in a million keystrokes. Phenomenal. It's right that someone like you is taking us to Titan.
Has the committee approved the mission? There's been talk of delay.
You shouldn't listen to talk. You leave in a week. You've got a substance test.
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All instances of the letters A, C, G, and T (representing the four nucleotides of DNA -- see trivia entry) are emphasized in almost all names of people and companies credited in the film. These letters appear in a different typeface from the rest of the name; also, in the opening credits they appear onscreen a little before the rest of the name, while in the closing credits they appear in blue instead of white. See more »
The DVD contains deleted footage not included in the the theatrical release:
The original version of the "Eight Day Center" scene. Here the doctor offers Vincent's parents the possibility to further enhance the future Anton, charging $5,000. This is refused by both of them.
A briefing about the upcoming mission done by Director Josef. He is interrupted by Irene who tells him that the investigators wish to start their testing on all members of Gattaca.
Detective Hugo exposes Anton to be Vincent's brother.
Caesar tells Vincent to put the books away and accept his life.
Shortly before Vincent leaves for Titan, he visits Caesar and gives him a telescope.
A short sequence which shows some famous people who may had not been born if science had decrypted the human DNA sooner: Abraham Lincoln (Marfan's Syndrome), Emily Dickinson (Manic Depression), Vincent van Gogh (Epilepsy), Albert Einstein (Dyslexia), John F. Kennedy (Addison's Disease), Rita Hayworth (Alzheimer's Disease), Ray Charles (Primary Glaucoma), Stephen Hawking (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis), and Jackie Joyner-Kersee (Asthma). The last sentence is: "Of course, the other birth that may never have taken place is your own."
Also included is an outtake where Xander Berkeley drinks one of the "urine" samples.
Gattaca is in many ways the best film I have seen about prejudice. Just as people have been judged for centuries by the color of their skin, Gattaca predicts that in the future there will be a more subtle discrimination. It being a science fiction film helps make it more effective by allowing us to feel the emotions of the characters with little of our own history getting in the way. A haunting musical score goes well with the feeling of the film.
Ethan Hawke as Vincent does a fine job showing the pain of someone whose life is limited before he even tries. But just as interesting were the supposedly superior characters; Vincent's girlfriend, brother and double who suffer from the lie that genetics can perfectly predict a person's life.
The film that Gattaca most reminds me of is Blade Runner. They are both about genetic engineering gone very wrong but Gattaca takes a very different approach. The problems are more subtle in Gattaca involving our own desires for success for ourselves and through our children. Amazingly, Gattaca is a good science fiction film with a small budget, few special effects and mostly filmed in existing modern buildings.
After seeing this film for a second time I liked it even better as the plot seemed more plausible. If you would like to see a sci-fi film that is based on interesting characters and situations and not explosions or special effects, try Gattaca.
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