I regularly record films from SBS, but it can be weeks or months before I watch them. Last night I started one and SBS gave the usual ‘sex scenes’ warning (bonus), then the opening credits started, and I realised the film starred the exquisite Nastassja Kinski, one of my favourite actresses.

Made in 2004, In your image is about Mathilde, who meets Thomas and they become parents relatively late in life thanks to IVF. He’s an obstetrician and, unbeknown to Mathilde, conspired with a colleague to implant a clone of her instead of a normal zygote.

Manon is born healthy but grows unusually quickly and has a strange antisocial temperament when interacting with others and is expelled from school, although she seems sweet to her family. She’s precocious and intense, and possibly psychotic.

atonimage cloning the beautiful

Her father, played by a somewhat insipid Christopher Lambert, always looks like he knows more than he’s saying. In your image seems like a thriller but it has slipstream aspects to it, particularly when it implies that Manon has inherited some of Matilde’s memories, which she experiences as nightmares.

It reminded me of Blueprint, made in 2003 and starring Franka Potente (another favourite) as Iris, a famous pianist who deliberately has herself cloned. She learns that she has multiple sclerosis, and wants to preserve her musical ability through her daughter as she know she will gradually lose the ability to perform. Like Matilde and Manon, Iris and her daughter Siri become competitors.

Genetic dystopias are a popular genre, and one that I find fascinating.

blueprint cloning the beautiful

The trailers are below (apologies I could not find subtitled versions).

cloning the beautiful

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