A genetically inferior man assumes the identity of a superior one in order to pursue his lifelong dream of space travel.

Director:

Andrew Niccol

Writer:

Andrew Niccol
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Popularity
1,520 ( 155)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 6 wins & 15 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Ethan Hawke ... Vincent / Jerome
Uma Thurman ... Irene
Gore Vidal ... Director Josef
Xander Berkeley ... Lamar
Jayne Brook ... Marie
Elias Koteas ... Antonio
Maya Rudolph ... Delivery Nurse
Una Damon ... Head Nurse
Elizabeth Dennehy ... Pre-School Teacher
Blair Underwood ... Geneticist
Mason Gamble ... Younger Vincent
Vincent Nielson Vincent Nielson ... Younger Anton
Chad Christ ... Young Vincent
William Lee Scott ... Young Anton
Clarence Graham Clarence Graham ... Personnel Officer
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Storyline

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 garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The Prisoner. Her Cell. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Sci-Fi | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for brief violent images, language, and some sexuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Jude Law's character asks to be called by his middle name, Eugene. "Eugene" comes from the Greek for "well born," which he is. "Eugenics" (the science of improving the hereditary qualities of a race or breed) is the central theme of the film. See more »

Goofs

When Vincent is born, it is reported there is a 99% probability of a heart condition. While at dinner with the family, this is repeated. However, later when the detectives are discussing the profile found they state there is a 90% chance the person has a heart condition. The probability of getting a disease may change when you get older. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Director Josef: You keep your work station so clean, Jerome.
Vincent: It's next to godliness. Isn't that what they say?
Director Josef: 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.
Vincent: Has the committee approved the mission? There's been talk of delay.
Director Josef: You shouldn't listen to talk. You leave in a week. You've got a substance test.
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Crazy Credits

After the credits complete, there is slow-motion footage, tinted blue, of the fingernails from the first scene hitting the pavement. See more »

Alternate Versions

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.
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Connections

Featured in WatchMojo: Top 10 Underrated Films of the 1990s (2016) See more »

Soundtracks

First Song (for Ruth)
Written by Charlie Haden
Performed by Stan Getz
Courtesy of Verve Records
By Arrangement with PolyGram Film & TV Licensing
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User Reviews

 
Film for the human spirit
17 August 2019 | by charles-boecherSee all my reviews

I watched this at 21 years old, and again after a life of successes and failures at 40.... This is, and should be, an impactful film, and one all people should see regardless of what country or background they are from. It's somewhat slow, and maybe doesn't go the way you want it to go (like life) but it punches you in the gut like humanity does in general, and leaves you with a feeling hope and confidence in the spirit of mankind.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Esperanto

Release Date:

24 October 1997 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Eighth Day See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$36,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$4,320,202, 26 October 1997

Gross USA:

$12,532,777

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$12,532,777
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital | SDDS | DTS | Dolby Atmos

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
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