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“Cracking the Code of Life” Documentary Essay

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Updated: May 24th, 2021

The documentary that we were supposed to watch and analyze is called “Cracking the Code of Life,” it appeared more than sixteen years ago. In terms of the key topics discussed in the documentary, it tells about the most important mysteries related to the human genome. In particular, the author and the invited scientists reflect on the topic of genome decoding and opportunities that the successful completion of this task involves. The DNA strand is presented as a message from the past that contains all the information that people need to improve the quality of their lives and control their bodies in a more effective manner. The scientists who appear in the documentary highlight that the role of DNA cannot be overstated as it presents a kind of an “instruction book” for humanity. Among the new healthcare options that the extended knowledge about the human genome involves, there is the opportunity to treat any diseases and define potential health threats of children. The documentary reports numerous details about the Human Genome Project that started in 1990 and involved the most talented scientists from numerous countries.

As for the weak points of the documentary that can be noticed, it is important to mention that some scenes were not related to the primary topic. For instance, there were a few scenes when detailed autobiographies of scientists and other people who contributed to the Human Genome Project were presented. In general, it cannot be regarded as an important weakness that makes people misunderstand the primary concepts. The topic can be rather difficult for those who know a little about genetics and previous research in the field. Therefore, unnecessary details can distract certain viewers from the key ideas.

The strong points of the documentary are numerous. To begin with, the film can be interesting for many categories of people because the scientists avoid using specific terms without explaining them. Another important strength of the film is related to the use of different materials that make issues more obvious; thus, including personal stories of guests related to dangerous hereditary disorders, the authors illustrate the way that the lack of knowledge on the human genome influences common people. In addition, it is clear that the information was presented in the right way because of the use of graphic materials. In fact, if the author or his guests were discussing certain concepts that are difficult to be imagined by an average person, additional materials such as pictures, diagrams, or models were presented. Another thing that I like about the discussed documentary is that the information related to the Human Genome Project and other important topics was well-organized, and the key events and project milestones were presented in chronological order.

The information presented in the documentary is related to the topic of bioethical issues. The latter is regarded as issues that occur due to the development of biology and genetics. In reference to the discussed topic, it is necessary to state that there were potential bioethical issues associated with the Human Genome Project. The project was aimed at decoding the human genome that helps scientists to get access to detailed genetic information, and many people suppose that it can have negative consequences for certain categories of people. In particular, the potential issue is related to the way that this information can be used. There are opinions that the extended knowledge on the properties of the human genome can cause more opportunities for discrimination of citizens visiting their potential employers or insurers. In fact, these concerns are not groundless as there are many people who would like to use the health information of other citizens for their own purposes.

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IvyPanda. (2021, May 24). “Cracking the Code of Life” Documentary. Retrieved from https://ivypanda.com/essays/cracking-the-code-of-life-documentary/

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1. IvyPanda. "“Cracking the Code of Life” Documentary." May 24, 2021. https://ivypanda.com/essays/cracking-the-code-of-life-documentary/.


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IvyPanda. "“Cracking the Code of Life” Documentary." May 24, 2021. https://ivypanda.com/essays/cracking-the-code-of-life-documentary/.

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IvyPanda. 2021. "“Cracking the Code of Life” Documentary." May 24, 2021. https://ivypanda.com/essays/cracking-the-code-of-life-documentary/.

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IvyPanda. (2021) '“Cracking the Code of Life” Documentary'. 24 May.

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