Sunday, February 15, 2015

Jupiter Ascending: The Embryonic Medical Research Connection

So currently I'm procrastinating.  I haven't been to Mass yet, which is probably a good thing.  The wind chill currently sits at -39C (-38F) and we have an extreme cold weather warning.  So I'm going to the later Mass which is at 11 hoping not to freeze my skirts off.

Last night, Hubby and I went to see the movie Jupiter Ascending.  I picked an action flick that had a tiny bit of romance.  The movie is okay.  It's got a lot of typical action cliches.  There wasn't a whole lot of substantive plot.  The most interesting part of it, to me, was the back story.

The story is based on a family of three siblings who inherited several parts of the universe after their mother died.  They also own a production company that produces a youth serum.  How it's produced reminds me of embryonic medical research.  The go in and "seed" a planet with people.  The planet is left largely alone until it reaches what the family considers to be maximum population that can be sustained (forget that having a maximum population is a myth).  Then they "harvest" the people.  They take them to a production plant and remove whatever it is that they remove for their youth serum.  This youth serum sustains those who can afford it.  It causes cell regeneration and thus the family is thousands of years old and theoretically will never die of disease or old age. 

While humans haven't quite gotten to the "old age" part, we have been creating embryos or abortion them in order to produce cells to prevent disease and reverse the affects of damaged cells.

Further connections to this are subtly intertwined in the move.  The younger brother mentions that his mother started having second thoughts about the morality of using other people to create this serum.  He early on asks his sister if she has ever seen a harvest.  "Oh, no" the sister says with obvious disgust at the idea, but then adds with a note of sadness "I hear that they don't feel any pain."  If that line doesn't make you think of abortion, I'm not sure what will.

I don't think the Wachowski's had any intention in making the film seem like an anti-abortion/anti-embryonic research movie, but that's the connection that I see.  Particularly since the whole movie dips into the futuristic realm of genetics.  Perhaps the transgendered "Lana" hopes one day to replace his male dna with female dna?  I have no idea.  The Wachowski's are pretty shy around reporters and basically said that the film is a cross between The Odyssey and the Wizard of Oz.  They aren't explaining themselves about why wealthy people are seeding and harvesting people for their own personal gain.  I suppose if they make a sequel it will make more sense.

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