A look into the morality on display within the film, Jurassic Park.
Within Jurassic Park, a much repeated conundrum is put on display: Is it within man’s obligation to put into practice the scientific breakthroughs that are developed? This is not a new issue, not only has it been repeated over the last fifty years in film, television and print but it is debated often in the real world. There are legitimate concerns over the ethical use of technology and knowledge and what potentially hazardous doors they open up.
Within the film we are exposed to a series of events that entail the discovery of genetic material of a species that has been long extinct. The genetic material is then put through a cloning process and allowed to mature into fully grown dinosaurs. They are then put into a park designed to be on display to the public and unforeseen complications arise. While this is a work of fiction it is expressive of real life conundrums.
There is always a temptation to use knowledge and technology unethically and use it for personal gain. There are three major views on the issue; the acknowledgement of the value of the technology for what it is, the acknowledgment of all the wrong that can occur and the gain to be had by the technology. Within the film we are introduced to three distinct characters who are representative of views of this issue; Dr. Grant, Dr. Malcom and John Hammond.
Dr. Grant represents the value of the technology for what it is. He has respect for everything good and bad that dinosaurs are capable of. He finds himself face to face with the very creatures that he has studied his entire life. He understands the wonder that comes with contact between humans and dinosaurs but he also carries a genuine fear born out of his respect for them.
Dr. Malcom recognizes all the wrong that can occur when a new technology is wielded with little regard for the morality of such an act. He believes that knowledge gained without the hard work needed to develop a respect for it is very dangerous to wield. Not only does he see the dinosaurs as abominations and not animals but he also believes that nature will balance out whatever attempts are made to control them. He firmly believes that when someone takes someone’s work and advances it, that responsibility is not carried forward.
John Hammond sees the scientific advances that he has helped to spearhead not only as a way to feel self-important but also as a financial opportunity. He is firmly set on the opening of his dinosaur park despite difficulties that are posed throughout his test run through. The chance for glory and capital be gained is too high not to open it.
While each of these views has merit, Jurassic Park chooses to show to the viewer opinions and evidence that displays the merits of all the views and only forces the viewer to come to a decision when our characters are forced to evacuate the park under threat by the actions that result from a lack of moderation.