“The concept of a man getting chased by himself, that’s a really compelling idea for a story…Thanks to the technology, now it’s possible.”Ang Lee (Director)
The film should have remained a concept. Gemini Man falls short in delivering a compelling story and relies entirely on Will Smith to carry what little story was there to begin with.
I will admit that I did not have high hopes coming into Gemini Man. I entered the movie theater expecting a fun action film and was in part satisfied to this effect. If you have seen the trailer for the film, you basically know the entirety of the plot from beginning to end. Will Smith plays Henry Brogan, a government hitman who has decided to retire at age 51 after amassing a whopping 72 kills and coming to the conclusion that he is not as sharp as he once was.
Beyond citing the lack of finesse he exercised in the 72nd hit, Smith, I mean Brogan mentions that the ghosts are starting to catch up with him. Smith’s retirement is cut short basically immediately; he doesn’t even get to enjoy a full day before he is betrayed by the government agency. The agency sends a clone to kill Smith and to effectually replace him.
Can’t a man get some peace and quiet?
It is worth noting that this initial chase sequence between the older Smith and computer-generated younger Smith is the highlight of the entire movie. Really, it does not get better than this and it comes fairly early on in the film.
The DNA used to produce the Smith’s clone was notably taken without his consent. The agency’s goal in doing so was to produce soldiers without consciences but with Smith’s innate killing ability and skill. Arguably, this is not a very original idea, as evidenced by Star Wars: Episode II- Attack of the Clones and Looper, but I guess it is at least sufficient to drive the plot forward. It also serves to make one distrust institutions of power and get one thinking about how our DNA is used in actuality.
Government DNA Databases
No, this is no conspiracy theory and I do not have an aluminum foil hat perched on my dome. The FBI has a database containing the DNA of people who have been:
“convicted of, arrested for, or facing charges of certain qualifying federal crimes or convicted of qualifying District of Columbia offenses, as well as non-U.S. citizens who are detained under the authority of the United States”FBI.gov
This database is used to cross-reference unknown DNA samples at crime scenes against those within the database in the hope of finding the perpetrators of crimes. This technique is good in theory because the victims of crime are able to rest easy knowing the true perpetrators in crimes suffered.
A majority of people have nothing to fear if their records are clean but those who aim to find out about their family records are also subject to their DNA being archived. Users who send their DNA to testing services such as 23andMe, Ancestry,Heritage are archived by the government in order to ensure quality in testing. Keep this in mind if you are at all interested in using a DNA testing service, or receive a kit as a gift; make sure to read all the privacy information. The fact that the archival process is not made clear to people from the very start is malicious.
DNA Archival Hits Home
The Justice Department is also proposing to maliciously archive the DNA of all immigrants crossing into the United States. The proposal is said to be done with the intent to crack down on crime, but in doing so, the legislation associates immigrants with criminals. This begs the question, how far is too far in aiming to “protect” the country?
Written by: Nils Ljungquist