There are many elements that make a good story, however, you need a great writer who is writing it. When comparing Gattaca by Andrew Niccol, and Boys and Girls by Alice Munro, Gattaca has a more effective message about the identity. Societal judgment and time periods make Gattaca has a more effective message.
Initially, both Gattaca and Boys and Girls share the same message, which is societal judgment keeps individual from reaching their true potential. To begin, In Gattaca, the society judges the protagonist of the film, Vincent, based on his DNA. Gattaca society is very strict about DNA and genes, they judge people based on the DNA report that they have since their birth. For instance, at the beginning of the movie when Vincent born, the doctor takes blood from him and realize that Vincent is born the natural way. The society named people who born naturally as “invalid” or “Natural”. Gattaca society judges babies when they are born thus, the society considers babies who born the natural way as lower class and their future will not be as successful as babies who born in a “perfect” way. In addition, in Boys and Girls, the narrator faces societal judgment, which makes her not able to reach her actual potential. To illustrate, the unnamed narrator is a girl works with her dad by cutting the grass at the farm. Her dad is a fox farmer and he needs someone to help him. The narrator is like an assistant to her dad, however, her mother believes that her daughter is not successful in helping her dad at the farm. Even though the narrator is better than her brother, Laird, at her job, but her mother still does not appreciate it. Her mother tells her father, “Wait- till Laird gets a little bigger, then you’ll have a real help” (Munro 50). In both the film and the short story the main character faces social judgment. The text and the movie are similar because the protagonists are struggling to prove their identity to society. On the other hand, they differ in the way that society judges them. In Gattaca, Vincent is judged based on his DNA and society thinks that being perfect is the main factor of being happy. The message behind the film is stronger than the short story because the protagonist has something to prove to society that is perfection is not everything and he still achieves his goal and goes to space. On the other hand, Vincent’s brother, Anton is genetically perfect, but he has nothing to prove to society. The idea of being “invalid” makes Vincent’s life harder. By the time that Vincent is closer to approach his goal, the obstacles become more challenging to him. It is clear that in Boys and Girls the narrator is being judged based on her gender, however, at the end of the story she declares, “I didn’t protest that, even in my heart. Maybe it was true” (Munro 59). The development of the narrator’s beliefs through the story shows how she has been impacted by society’s beliefs. In the beginning, she believes that even though she is a girl, she is able to do boys’ duties. However, in the end, her beliefs change because of society and she does not oppose. She considers their beliefs are right and her beliefs are wrong. To conclude, both Gattaca and Boys and Girls have the same message, however, Gattaca’s message is more powerful because of the societal judgment.
Additionally, Gattaca and Boys and Girls talk about a specific period of time, however, Gattaca has a more effective message since the time period that it is talking about is the future. Initially, Gattaca depicted in a future society where everything is full of technology. The technology is used to examine the genes of babies. The time period that the movie is about is really important since it shows that even in the future there are societal judgments, and babies are judged based on their DNA. To illustrate, in Gattaca, by using reproductive technology, parents get help from geneticists to select specific genes and have “valid” children. In the movie, they have developed equipment at the hospital that doctors use to collect data about genes. Society treats people who born the natural way in a way that makes them feel that they are valueless and not important. The protagonist of the movie, Vincent, is the person who has been judged in this time period. He is trying to prove to society with all these judgments he would be able to succeed and be happy. Next, Boys and Girls is published in 1968 (Tripod.com). It is clear that in 1968 social judgment occur. In this time period, society judges people based on their gender. The narrator faces gender judgment from her family and society. The society has many expectations for each gender. As an illustration, the narrator gets many complaints from her family as they want their daughter to behave in a certain way. The narrator’s grandmother stays in the narrator’s house for a few weeks as the narrator declares, “My grandmother came to stay with us for a few weeks and I heard other things. “Girls don’t slam doors like that.” “Girls keep their knees together when they sit down.” And worse still, when I asked some questions, “That’s none of girls’ business.””(Munro 52). Her grandmother put standards for girls and she considers that girls should have a certain way to behave. The film and the short story have similarities in the way that society judges the protagonists. The protagonists in the movie and the short story go through many ordeals in order to reach their true potential. DNA is one of the factors that tell whether the baby is a male or a female. Vincent is a boy and the unnamed narrator is a girl therefore, both Vincent and the narrator are judged based on their DNA. Gattaca and Boys and girls differ in the time period that they were judged. In Gattaca, both male and female were judged which is a good thing as it shows gender equality. However, female and male are judged based on their genes. Despite advanced technology, people are still being judged. The idea of being judged even in the future shows that societal judgment would be present in all time periods but in a different way. On the other hand, in 1968, Boys and Girls have the issue of gender inequality. It is clear that in this time period, girls are judged a lot and society puts a limit for girls. Whereas, boys are not judged and they are considered as the people who have the ability to do whatever they want. The idea of being judged based on the gender type shows society’s strictness. To explain, when the narrator is judged based on her actions, society limits her potentials and they are ‘destroying’ her self confidence. In summary, Gattaca has a more powerful message since the time period the movie is about combines the issue that is happening in Boys and Girls and Gattaca. Also, Gattaca has a theme that summarizes the societal judgment which is happening in both time period. The theme is, no matter in what time period an individual is born, he or she would find the Societal judgment in their life.
In conclusion, Both Gattaca and Boys and Girls have a message about identity. The way that the societal judgment present in Gattaca is more powerful than Boys and Girls as Vincent is trying to prove his identity to the society and he goes through many obstacles. Also, the time period that both Gattaca and Boys and Girls are important. However, the time period in Gattaca is more significant. Therefore, Gattaca has a more effective message. “Identity is this incredible invisible force that controls your whole life. It is invisible, like gravity is invisible, but it controls your whole life.”(Tony Robbins).