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Never Let Me Go

A movie directed by Mark Romanek

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No clones for me, period!

  • Apr 19, 2011
This film asks more questions than it attempts to answer, if that’s the premise of the science fiction author, that is. It involves the world of human clones where their existence is purely to provide organ replacements to the “originals”.
Well, based on that, the author then attempt to explore the human side of the clones? Granted, they are as real as the humans and therefore ought to have emotions as they are. Then, the story hints that those who fall in love are allowed to defer their ultimate departure (after being fully “extracted” of their uses!).

Stop it right there… this is one messed up story! If you didn’t know they are clones, then the story is quite humanlike. And yet, what makes it a different movie is because they are not real and original. The audience may be left to argue about what is real and what is not. Then again, why the emphasis on falling in love (which I presumed the author is trying to emphasize that as the ultimate and treasured human emotions, I may be wrong!)?  Of course, at the near end of the film, one gets to find out the motive of that assumption.
In films or in science fiction, one is allowed to experiment with clones and morality of cloning. This is possible and permissable. Not so when the real clones are in the world one fine day. That is messing with life big time! And perhaps this is what the author is trying to put the message out there.

Having said that, it’s taken reality out of proportion. To me, it’s extremely surreal and mind-boggling… why these clones never rebel (are they unable to, afraid to or simply accepting their fates)? Again, I got the feeling that they live in a world of their own. I don’t see “real” humans. What kind of a world do they live in? Where is the real world?
It’s not a film that fully makes sense but it’s one that if you let yourself believe, you would. Ultimately, it attempts to answer the question if the human clones have souls and from the look of it, they do! Then I think it’s too selfish of humans to put one’s own clones (ie. Your “other” self) through living hell and hopeless existence, even if ultimately to save oneself! No, I don’t like it a bit!

This is not a love story, not a science fiction nor is it a documentary. It is a mixed up toss of humanity (as in what defines human) and a resigned look at fate. 

P.S. If clones exist, how do governments deal with the explosive population growth? Energy and food requirements? I don't think the world want another Gadaffi or Osama, do we?! 
No clones for me, period! No clones for me, period!

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April 19, 2011
I truly liked this film. Now as for your comment: "Having said that, it’s taken reality out of proportion. To me, it’s extremely surreal and mind-boggling… why these clones never rebel (are they unable to, afraid to or simply accepting their fates)? Again, I got the feeling that they live in a world of their own. I don’t see “real” humans. What kind of a world do they live in? Where is the real world?"

The clones never rebel because they were born in this world where that is their purpose. It is a commentary as to how humans can be programmed to accept a fate, bleak or not as long as they have been conditioned. This is why they were trying to prove that clones have a soul.

This is an alternate world where humanity is desperate for life. It also serves as an analogy or metaphor that humans can indeed make the most of anything.

As for the government, remember, the clones only exist for a very short time. I am sure they can have a budget for this if they have a budget to fight a war. One needs to remember that this is a human drama and not science fiction. (as you've stated)

I ordered the book and have yet to read it. Nice one, Sharrie!
April 19, 2011
Aerin, well, at least, Sharrie liked a little more than most people. +1. The way she reviewed was fun and personal.

This is one of those movies that is not for everyone and its themes were indeed hard to swallow for some. To understand, try to picture not clones but folks with a terminal disease at a young age. I thought this movie was great as a depiction of life and death; of purpose and sadness. It also has a subtle message that humans can accept a fate, when approved by a society. (See? folks are brainwashed into buying into a new ipad?) and people are indeed willing to step on someone else to get to where they want to be. (hey, it happens everywhere).

Yes, it is depressing, I actually discussed this with one of my friends, and I said, it is because they have not felt true emotional pain and have not seen someone live with cancer. I loved this film and I would defend it if someone dared say that the depressing themes have no purpose.  I think depressing movies/books have more ambition to show us the truth and give us what we need to see than what we want to see or hear.
April 19, 2011
Thanks. As I've said, I love movies that make me think and subtly depicts the immoralities/injustices that are around our own society. Nope it is NOT sci-fi film, and to approach as such would ruin its experience. Just don't have me review a happy film, ok, Aerin? LOL!
April 19, 2011
Hmmm...that is an idea. I may just try that. LMAO!
April 20, 2011
@ I don't agree with you on some points. I tend to think you like the film and you read it the way you perceived it. Logically though, the reasoning is not sound. As far as I know of clones, they are carbon copies of humans. Hence, in reality, they are like real people. People rebel (more ore less depending on conditioning) but there is no such thing as no rebellion. As long as they are able to think, they have tendencies to rebel. Also, if they live up to more than 25 year or so, they feed on a lot of food! Just look into your fridge and don't go marketing and see how long that will last you. Of course, there is no way to feed a world of clones!!! I don't find the film that depressing. I found it more unsound. If according to you, life is so worthy, then that world the film has portrayed is savage. It is willing to take another's life for the originals. The carbon copy is exactly as good as the real, that's why you can use the organs. If not even better since they are not the ones that are sick! To bring up a life just to supplement your own, that's not a healthy moral at all. If humans are even against the buying of organs, how can they kill lives to save another (even if that's the source)! I think it's sick. Not depressing. The author seems to think the society will accept clones as non living thing! Imagine how angry people at about sharks fin and dogs meat, yet this is a film about a society of clones? I must have missed out something somewhere!
April 20, 2011
Oh, one more thing... they don't have the budget to fight a war! That's why the US$ keeps going down the drain. Unless they sell more arms to the Saudis or Taiwanese, otherwise, u're wrong about having the budget!
April 20, 2011
I like it not because it is depressing nor because I like the acting. Rather, it is a story which takes a unique twist, despite its unsound basis and assumptions. I believe it started off with a great idea but ended up poorly because of a few unrealistic premises about humans and the best of human's spirituality. Instead, it ended up showing how selfish humans are! In that sense, to me, it failed to dazzle!
April 20, 2011
This movie reminded me of "Artificial Intelligence" while AI dazzles as far as I'm concerned :-) It's one of the best sci-fi!
April 20, 2011
All I can say, Sharrie, while you do have a point there, this is an expression of an idea and it is a commentary on society and not with clones or that alternate world. To take the elements of the film literally and not symbolically is the wrong way to approach the movie. I understand what you're trying to say, but remember it is an alternate world and the elements of that alternate world were intentionally left undeveloped so viewers can focus on the metaphor, analogies and symbolisms. There is a lot of reading between the lines involved if you are to like this film.

There are movies that inspire and focus on the bright side of humanity, this is NOT one of them. Remember, they had the clones to do art so they could show they were as good as the original. Their answer was "we were providing answers to questions no one was asking." That made me cringe. That alone defines what it stood in when regards to spirituality, there was no belief in them.

I appreciate your points, but looking for the bright spots of humanity in a film meant to portray the dark side of humanity, and for details that it wasn't meant to provide would ruin the film's experience. If it gave details to the alternate world, then it would be sci-fi, and as you've said this is a drama. Yes, the film is not for everyone, and being written by a Japanese writer, I am not surprise that it is not for everyone.

This is why I like sites like this I learn from comments like yours.

April 20, 2011
IF there is indeed no believe in spirituality, then in my personal case, I'd rather to have clones live on than the original, LOL! The clones are much younger and definitely have more energy than I've having these days! Age is catching up and I don't like it one bit! Those were the days :-) As for the Japanese, they had better start cloning, esp. those who live near Fukushima, hehe..
April 20, 2011
At the rate we are discussing this, before I know it, we'll be having a world of clones! Hmmm, could it be you're also a clone?!?! ;-)
April 20, 2011
LOL!! hold up, how'd you know my secret? Hey...what time is it where you're at?
April 20, 2011
I knew it about Sharrie!!

yeah, I know, but Japanese writings and even their films are always structured this way, so it is no surprise that his work was influenced. I so wanna read the book!!

I am a clone too...cloned from Thor Odinson LOL! (ok, that is corny)
April 21, 2011
I agree with Aerin about the discussion it generated. As for the book, now I know why I hardly read fiction! I'll end up finding fault with it and as those who knew me used to say I'm the most pragmatic person. I know when something won't work financially, LOL... About the book though... I tend to think it reflects backward rather than a forward take on society. As for William's assertion about asking the questions that no one dares to ask... I'd think sometimes asking the right questions is more important than merely asking or not asking the questions. People may not be asking questions because they think that's not a question that would lead to the right answer! As for what's the right or wrong question, that's up to society to decide, I suppose. Obviously, the way we dealt with our environments, along the way, people has been asking the wrong questions!
April 21, 2011
Don't get me wrong though... I do like the idea of clones. I simply don't like the idea of making use of those clones and then getting rid of them when they expired those uses! I hate the idea of making use of people, even if those are our own clones! But, the idea of getting a younger and slimmer me, hehe... that's fascinating! I know, I'm vain! Hey, I'm just curious, you guys like the idea of another copy of your spouses? LOL... I must admit that I've heard many people who have had children because they like the idea of seeing themselves in those children, so, in some ways, we do love "cloning", I think!
April 21, 2011
People believe what they want to believe :)
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About the reviewer
Sharrie ()
Ranked #12
I'm a traveler at heart & have been nicknamed Travel Queen by friends & colleagues alike. Traveling has been my life passion for the last decade or so. As we enter a new decade, I'm excited … more
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Never Let Me Go
 is an upcoming dystopian drama film based on a novel of the same name written by Kazuo Ishiguro. It is directed by Mark Romanek and stars Keira Knightley, Carey Mulligan and Andrew Garfield. Alex Garland wrote the screenplay for the film. The film is produced by DNA Films and Film4. It will premiere at the 2010 Toronto International Film Festival, and will open the 54th London Film Festival. It will be distributed theatrically by Fox Searchlight Pictures in the United States on 15 September 2010. In the United Kingdom it will be distributed theatrically on 14 January 2011, by Twentieth Century Fox.
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Screen Writer: Alex Garland, Kazuo Ishiguro
Runtime: 103 minutes
Studio: Fox Searchlight
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