“Armageddon” director Michael Bay likes big bangs, fast chases and fancy gadgets but his latest movie “The Island” takes a new turn, addressing the pressing political issue of cloning and the ethics of science.

Actors Ewan McGregor and Scarlett Johansson play two clones who escape from a secret institution in the near future.

“I want people when they walk out of this movie to think ‘If I could, would I want a clone?”‘ Bay said. “We all want to live longer but how far would you go? Would you be selfish enough to take someone’s life to live longer?”

The movie starts with a view of Lincoln Six-Echo, played by McGregor, who lives with hundreds of other people in an apparently Utopian facility where everybody wears white and has their every move monitored and controlled.

The residents live in hope of winning the lottery which will allow them to go to “The Island,” reportedly the last place on the planet uncontaminated by environmental disaster.

After his curiosity is awakened by conversations with a technician played by Steve Buscemi, Lincoln discovers his real purpose is to provide spare parts for rich and famous humans who have paid $5 million to be cloned.

He and Johansson’s character escape with a band of mercenaries in hot pursuit, at which point Bay gets to go to town on big action stunts and flashy chase scenes.

By Claudia Parsons

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