Journal of Bioethical Inquiry

, Volume 7, Issue 3, pp 329–331 | Cite as

Sandra Shapshay. ed. 2009. Bioethics at the movies

Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, ISBN-13: 978-0-8018-9078-9. 380 pp.
  • September WilliamsEmail author

Bioethics at the Movies is an anthology exploring fiction films from a bioethical perspective. The book is about the cultural significance of film, linking bioethical principles underpinning clinical and scientific practice in the porous way seen in life. Films reviewed in this book had theatrical releases after modern bioethics was initiated by the Nuremberg Code in 1947; however, bioethical analysis of film has emerged only in the past twenty years, coinciding with the rapid proliferation of new technologies to access screen narratives.

The book’s introduction helps readers consider ways that film reflects and influences bioethical issues. Shapshay outlines some of these effects as pedagogical and others as experimental. Pitfalls of using films to explore bioethics are also examined. Among these pitfalls is the over-mining of film for application to moral philosophy, thus risking the loss of the filmmakers’ intended vision. Though designed as a companion for university bioethics and...


  1. Bicentennial Man 35 mm. Directed by Chris Columbus. Los Angeles, CA: Touchstone Pictures,1999.Google Scholar
  2. Citizen Ruth. 35 mm. Directed by Alexander Payne New York: NY: Miramax Films, 1997.Google Scholar
  3. Eternal SunShine of the Spotless Mind. 35 mm. Directed by Michel Gondry. Los Angeles, CA: Focus Features, 2004.Google Scholar
  4. Gattiaca. 35 mm. Directed by Andrew Niccol. Los Angeles, CA: Columbia Pictures, 1997.Google Scholar
  5. Ikiru. 35 mm. Directed by Akira Kurosawa. Tokyo, Japan: Toho. 1952.Google Scholar
  6. I Robot. 35 mm. Directed by Alex Proyas. Los Angeles, CA: Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation, 2004.Google Scholar
  7. Million Dollar Baby 35 mm. 35 mm. Directed by Clint Eastwood. Chicago, IL: Lakeshore Entertainment, 2005.Google Scholar
  8. Multiplicity 35 mm. Directed by Harold Ramis Los Angeles, CA: Columbia Pictures, 1996.Google Scholar
  9. My Life Without Me. 35 mm. Directed by Isabel Coixet. Los Angeles, CA: Sony Picture Classics, 2003.Google Scholar
  10. Star Trek Nemesis 35 mm. Directed by Stuart Baird. Los Angeles, CA: Paramount Pictures, 2002.Google Scholar
  11. Talk to Her. 35 mm. Directed by Alejandro Amenabar. Los Angeles, CA: Fine Line Features. 2002.Google Scholar
  12. The Sea Inside 35 mm. Directed by Alejandro Amenabar. Spain: Fine Line Features, 2004.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.San Francisco Department of Public HealthLaguna Honda HospitalSan FranciscoUSA

Personalised recommendations