Andrew Niccol (1997)

15 Certificate


Our Score
Before screenplay writer Andrew Niccol stood the science-fiction genre on its head with The Truman Show, he had already shaken it up with this engrossing futuristic thriller, which he also directs. Built around the controversial subject of genetic engineering and how it might lead to a socio-economic class divide, it follows Vincent Freeman (Ethan Hawke), an imperfect human who attempts to join a space mission by illegally exchanging identities with Jerome (Jude Law), a paraplegic with perfect DNA. How he does this armed with blood and urine samples is ingeniously shown by Niccol, who mints a new genre vocabulary with his absorbing, intelligent and suspenseful story. In Niccol's future society, a dustbuster is deadlier than a gun and wearing contact lenses means the choice between life or death. This thought-provoking cautionary tale is stunningly designed and has accomplished performances from Hawke, Law and Uma Thurman that do it full justice.


In a future run by a genetically enhanced elite, a caretaker who was born unmodified is barred from all but the most menial jobs. He swaps identities with a former athlete who has lost the use of his legs in an accident, allowing him to realise his dream of joining the space programme. However, a murder investigation threatens to expose his deception. Sci-fi drama, starring Ethan Hawke, Uma Thurman and Jude Law.

Cast & Crew

Jerome / Vincent Ethan Hawke
Irene Uma Thurman
Eugene / Jerome Jude Law
Director Josef Gore Vidal
Lamar Xander Berkeley
Marie Jayne Brook
Antonio Elias Koteas
Delivery nurse Maya Rudolph
Head nurse Una Damon
Pre-school teacher Elizabeth Dennehy
Geneticist Blair Underwood
Younger Vincent Mason Gamble
Younger Anton Vincent Nielson
Young Vincent Chad Christ
Young Anton William Lee Scott
Personnel officer Clarence Graham
Caesar Ernest Borgnine
German Tony Shalhoub
Detective Hugo Alan Arkin
Gattaca Hoover Carlton Benbry
Sequencing customer Grace Sullivan
Sequencing technician Ken Marino
Anton Loren Dean
Director Andrew Niccol
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Other Information

Language: EnglishColourTheatrical distributor: Columbia PicturesGuidance: Edited for sex scenes and nudity, and some of its language and violence. Available on: video and DVD