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The Sixth Day

Director:Roger Spottiswoode
Writers:Cormac and Marianne Wibberly
Columbia Pictures; 124 minutes; PG-13
Release:11/00
Cast:Arnold Schwarzenegger, Tony Goldwyn, Sarah Wynter

Arnold Schwarzenegger modulates his persona between blunt mercenary and lovable family man in The Sixth Day. He plays a light neo-Luddite named Adam Gibson. Cloning is the next big thing in the near future. Adam won't, for example, remake their dead dog for the sake of his sad daughter. Although copying humans has been declared illegal, one day Adam comes home with a creepy clone doll for his kid only to find himself replaced. Best of all, his adoring family doesn't notice the difference. The rest of the film involves Adam trying to set things straight. An evil corporation headed by Tony Goldwyn is to blame.

The villainous clones are like Blade Runner's replicants (stripped of the moral implications): they have no real rights and it's okay—even encouraged—to kill them. Sarah Wynter's extravagant murderess is one of several baddies who's killed and returns as her own replacement.

The Sixth Day is, of course, a Schwarzenegger action flick, but he brings out a smoother, more enjoyable side than recent movies. While reminiscent of other sci-fi outings (Total Recall and The Terminator), The Sixth Day carves out a place for itself. Its portrayal of the future is well realized. The movie even manages to work in some good jokes and slight philosophizing about a weary, Xeroxed world.


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