Friday, September 22, 2006

The Fertility Island

Did any of you ever see the 2005 movie The Island, with Ewan Mcgregor and Scarlett Johansson?

If not, here's the basic premise: (bear with me, I'm going somewhere with this)

A guy named Lincoln Six-Echo (McGregor) is a resident of a seemingly utopian but contained facility in the mid 21st century. Like all of the inhabitants of this carefully controlled environment, Lincoln hopes to be chosen to go to the "The Island" - reportedly the last uncontaminated spot on the planet. These poeple were the only people saved from a nuclear war or something that had contaminated the whole world, except for this little island somewhere, where residents were sent to repopulate Earth. Periodically, new residents are brought into this facility who were just "rescued" from the outside. This contained facility is all the inhabitants know, (they lost their memory of any other life due to the apocolypse somehow). There's a lottery every couple days to see which one of the thousands of people get chosen - seemingly at random, to go to "The Island", which has become, in their minds, the ultimate goal, the only thing they want, the solution to all their problems. They are told about it by the staff constantly. Pictures of The Island are constantly being projected around the facility. It looks like an awesome place, filled with love.

When the lottery is drawn, and someone is chosen, that person is obviously elated beyond words. The others, as you might expect, are a mixed bag. Some people are genuinely thrilled for that person, others are secretly jealous and retreat into themselves, and others are totally bullshit, yelling "this is unfair! I've been in this place WAY longer than that dude! He basically just got here! This is Bullshit!", and are not happy for that person at all.

Ok, now this next part is not relevant to the point I will make, but it seems only right that I tell you what happens in this movie. It turns out it's all a lie, these people are not the last survivors of some kind of apocolypse. They are human clones, living in an enclosed facilty under the desert. Obviously, they don't know that. Wealthy people can, for $5 million, have themselves cloned and have that clone's ageing sped up to match the current age of the wealthy "customer". They are, in effect, an "insurance policy" for their customer, a spare parts recepticle. If a customer gets lung cancer from smoking, for example, then their "clone" wins the lottery to go to the "island", which is actually an operating room, where their lungs would be removed and implanted into the customer, with the same DNA. That clone is then dead. Get it? The reason people are getting chosen to go to the island is because something terrible has happened to their "owner" , and he/she needs spare parts, (a new kidney, a new heart, bone marrow, etc). If someone has been in the facility for a very long time, it's because their owner is perfectly healthy and has no need for them yet. It's a very cool idea. Ewan and Scarlett (the clones of a race car driver and a famous actress) escape from the center and try to find their "owners".

So that's cool. But forget all that. Let's get back to wishing for "The Island".

We are all wishing for "The Island" too. We see images of it every day. Smiling people and playing with their little kids or walking around with their big pregnant bellies, they're all at the Island. And all we want is to get out of here and get to The Island too. At random, someone seemingly undeserving gets taken from this infertile facility and send to the Island, despite the fact that others of us have been here WAY longer! It's totally unfair. And, there are those a-holes who are happy in this place, who didn't even want to GO the the Island, and THEY get chosen! There's no justice in it.

There are those of us who are genuinely elated at the news that others have gotten pregnant, and of course there are plenty of us who yell and scream because it's not fair. We all think we'd probably love the Island more than other people, some of whom, in our opinion, don't even BELONG on the Island.

Thankfully, unlike in the movie where the Island actually equals death, our Island actually equals life.

There's really no good way to end this post, I just wanted to relate that crazy-ass movie to our lives. Mission accomplished.

Meeting with CityDoc in an hour. Fingers crossed for a good consult!


Katie said...

OUTSTANDING POST. And several of my friends who have kids tell me that, truly, life ain't as rosy with kids as I think it is.

Somehow it's little consolation. I still want to "get lucky". Maybe it's a pride thing?

serenity said...

Perhaps the lesson may be that the Island isn't what we have expected? That people get pregnant and aren't magically cured of the pain if IF?

You and M are most definitely living proof of that.

Alli said...

Good luck with your consult! Hope CityDoc comes through!!!!

Meri-ann said...

Wow, that movie analogy SO makes sense, I saw the movie and now you've pointed it out I can relate to it so well.....
I want to go the the island!!
Good luck with your consult...

Anonymous said...

Good analogy. The "lottery" is what makes us we feel so powerless. It feels like it doesn't matter what we do to try to get to "the island" - if your number doesn't get called up, then you're stuck in the infertility zone.

Here's food for another post: what about that couple who couldn't have their own child and had the wife's clone have their baby for them. I knew that was wrong, but couldn't help thinking what I would have done if faced with the chance to have my biological child through my clone.

VanillaDreams said...

I understand your analogy of the film....But you know what? As soon as you brought up the movie (and I've heard of it, but never saw it) the first thought that crossed my mind was...."Gee, it would be nice to have a clone so I could get an extra ovary or two, and perhaps a new uterus."

LOL -- Ummm, does this make me a bad person!??!? :D

Ha! But then, I had Ovarian cancer when I was probably if anyone needed a clone for "spare parts", I would probably be a good example of that!! :)

I enjoyed your analogy, too, though. ;)


Southern Comfortable said...

Cool analogy. I enjoyed the movie, anyway, for its basic message on the sanctity of human life, but now I'll think of it on a whole new level.