In The Man with the Golden Cells, director Florence Martin-Kessler asks crucial and timely questions about the right to personal physical integrity in the face of scientific research. Travelling through Canada, France, the United States and Singapore, Martin-Kessler challenges an industry driven by the lure of profits - an industry that sometimes seems to ignore the distinction betweeen life and lab.
The starting point for this hour-long film is the famous lawsuit launched by John Moore, who sued his doctor for culturing, patenting and passing on Moore's cells to the pharmaceutical industry - all without his permission. This controversial suit marked the rise of biotechnology. But can the human body be reduced to a territory for scientific exploration?
The Man with the Golden Cells is a science documentary that navigates the worlds of patent protection and human dignity, while reminding us that the roots of biotechnology's commercial potential lie in our desire to be healthy and eternally young. Meanwhile, our body, so precious to us, is caught between the needs of commerce, ethics and health.