VSL// Aliens meets cloning

The very best get-under-your-skin science fiction leans more toward fact than fantasy. Splice (in theaters 6/4), a new sci-fi thriller by Canadian director Vincenzo Natali, should keep you interested—and totally freaked out.

Sarah Polley and Adrien Brody star as romantically teamed biochemists who specialize in splicing DNA to produce multi-species creatures. These beings are mostly innocuous and ugly, until the couple decides to break company protocol and secretly create an animal-human chimera named Dren, who proves to be neither. Though the film is certainly out to entertain—it’s filled with dark humor, steamy romance and plenty of anxious violins—it may also stir some uncomfortable thoughts. The movie’s science is not so far from reality’s science (the U.K. legalized animal-human hybrids in 2008), making the questions the film raises about identity, love and ethical obligations to semi-human species compelling and (shriek!) relevant.

This post is from Observer Short List—an email of three favorite things from people you want to know. Sign up to receive OSL here. VSL// Aliens meets cloning