Gattaca

Gattaca

The ethical issues presented in Cataract are ethical egoism, psychological egoism, sacrifice and the possibilities of radical perfection. It challenged the worthiness of the consequences of extreme self serving efforts; to take risks; to do the impossible despite public opinion. These ethical issues are based on the main character, Vincent. He uses these ideologies to achieve his goal of perfection, defying the constant disapproval of his parent’s which alienated him as a child.

The ethical context is shown in Vincent relationships with other characters, such as Irene, Jerome, his brother Anton and his parent’s. It is shown through the negative or positive consequences of his morality that has affected his relationships. For example, when Irene finds out that Vincent has been lying about his identity, he seems to show remorse. But it is not clear whether it is remorse or a desire to retrieve his pride- to have the audacity to lie about your identity it is assumed that you are a narcissist- narcissists typically do not feel remorse, but damage of their pride.

However, his narcissism is to his advantage as he also had the audacity to prove the impossible possible, especially to his parent’s. But his striving to discover is limits, the limits of the universe were not without sacrifice, another moral issue. He sacrificed almost all of his life to proving he could be the best; but this did not come without consequences. His parent’s disliked him because they found it irritating. His father said “the only way you’ll see the inside of a spaceship is if you’re cleaning it; stop dreaming”.

He proved this statement wrong at the end of the movie, when he is in the spaceship. He proved the impossible by taking risks. The message is, “you can do anything”. A first response to Vincent was as a child and teenager, he was alienated. He was alienated because he was illegitimate to his parent’s. The relationship between him and his parent’s was obvious ever since he was born; when he was discovered to be “default”, his father changed his name from Anton Vincent to Vincent Anton.

I worried for him because alienated from a very young age can lead to mental illness or poor development of emotional empathy. But his passion for space travel defied his parent’s disapproval, in his mind. However, constantly competing with Anton, and constantly losing, could be seen to deter someone from trying. But Vincent continuously tried, demonstrating determination. Vincent is a very strong minded, determined and diligent person, which is why I respected him.

Irene is mysterious, not much is exposed about her, apart from that she can empathic with Vincent due to her biological circumstances, and that she clearly has feelings for him . However, she developed an understandable mistrust for Vincent. Contradictions in the story are represented with symbolism; for example, when Vincent is born there is a close up of rosary beads; a sign of Christian value. However, in Christian philosophy, genetic engineering would be widely disapproved, for every unman is supposedly of God’s creation, and God’s creation is suppose to be perfect.

So when Vincent parent’s were applying to receive the “perfect child” through genetic engineering, it was not in compliance with Christian value. Especially as the engineers claimed that “almost all parent’s” were using genetic engineering. It was very inaccurate with the philosophy of the decade, as American society was deeply based on conservative Christian value. “There is no gene for the human spirit” meaner that Cataract strives to perfect physical performance, but the effort comes from within.

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