The next great scientific
frontier, at least here on Earth, is surely ourselves. Very minute and
ancient parts of ourselves, no less. The temptation and fascination of
“messing with DNA” is well-explored in the movies, especially elegantly
Splice, we find brilliant scientist couple Clive (Adrien Brody) and
Elsa (Sarah Polley) working for a pharmaceutical company (NERD) on a
synthetic male and female life-form which can be harvested for proteins.
The results, Ginger and Fred, seem a success, only spurring the
maternally-spirited Sarah to ponder the taboo: adding a human component.
result is an Alien-like foetoid with aggressive tendencies. From
the get go, a moral chasm opens between the unmarried couple who were
just pondering starting a family. Should the barriers of traditional
science be broken once the science itself moves beyond the traditional?
sure co-writer/director Vincenzo Natali (of Cube fame) means
well, probably hoping to thrill and titillate our sense of scientific
and even sexual curiosity (no kidding), but for me the entire effort
collapses under its own pretence. The screening I attended had people
giggling during the second and third acts.
an auspicious start with whiz-bang tech and pseudo-science, the attempt
to generate tension because laughable. There are some cringe-worthy
moments where the viewer is dumb-struck, especially around the
determined earnestness of the leads with the creature, Dren (Delphine
Chanéac as a CGI hybrid!). About the only redemption is the
cinematography. That, and the big corporate showcase of Ginger and Fred,
which reminded me of a scene in Robocop 2.
I think Brody’s cred could have done without appearing in
this film (you will know the scenes I mean), considering his amazing
performance in The Pianist. I’m not saying don’t go see Splice.
I’m just saying know what to expect. There’s a time and place for
everything, including schlock! In fact, I imagine others also enjoyed
themselves as much as I did but perhaps in a way not intended by Natali.