the movie “The Identical” and nature vs nuture debate
The Movie “The Identical” and Nature vs. Nurture Debate
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This paper examines five publications regarding “The Identical” movie. The movie is about two identical twin brothers that are separated at birth. It will explore the debate between Nature and Nurture exhibited in the movie. It is, however, necessary to note that different authors offer different opinions about the two concepts. According to Myers (2014), human beings develop traits either through genetics or the environment. Also, the paper aims to focus on the similarities and differences in the twins’ lives. A review by Duralde (2014) depicts that the movie is based on Elvis Presley and his stillborn twin. Other sources delineate that Elvis Presley could be feeling guilty for the loss of his twin. As a matter of fact, he believes that his great talent in music incorporates his twin’s life. Additionally, this paper gives insight on the strength of Nature apropos of Nurture. The two characters in the movie clearly show that Nature is more powerful than Nurture in their lives (Moore, 2001). The paper also explores the ways in which some parents force their children to be like them due to Nurture. Most of these children often turn out to be rebellious. However, Ryan, a character in “The Identical” movie; stands his ground but he does not rebel against his father. Lastly, the paper gives an overview on predetermination in the lives of human beings. Before one is conceived, their life is already determined. The movie clearly shows that one should follow their path to living a happy and peaceful life. The paper critically gives an overview on the Nature vs. Nurture Debate about “The Identical” movie.
The Movie “The Identical” and Nature vs. Nurture Debate
In the field of Psychology, Nature vs. Nurture debate refers to the contemplation of whether the behaviors of individuals are genetically or environmentally acquired. Often, people acquire certain traits through inheritance or from their close environment (Myers, 2014). As a matter of fact, Nature is tied to genetics while Nurture leans toward one’s surroundings or the environment. Nature vs. Nurture debate focuses on the ways in which the two affect one’s behavior. Nonetheless, it is primary to note that there are those characteristics tied to either Nature or Nurture. For instance, one’s skin color, height, hair type or diseases are only genetically acquired (Dowling, 2011). Those traits that are not present during birth are not considered genetic or hereditary. This paper focuses on the Nature vs. Nurture Debate according to the movie, “The Identical”.
“The Identical” is a Brazilian film that was initially released in 2014. However, the first theatrical release took place in the United States of America (Movie Clips Trailers, 2014). As earlier mentioned, the movie is about two identical twin brothers that undergo an unfortunate separation at birth. In fact, the movie is based on Elvis Presley and his stillborn twin brother. In the movie, the twins are Ryan and Drexel both played by the same actor, Blake Rayne. The twins are born to William and Helen Hemsley. Unfortunately, the birth of twins does not please William because he is unemployed and struggles to provide for his family. William settles on seeking spiritual guidance, and luckily, he learns that the Reverend and his wife desperately want a child (Movie Clips Trailers, 2014).
William and his wife give Ryan to the Reverend and his wife. He is now named Ryan Wade after being adopted into Reece and Louise’s Wade home. As a Reverend, Reece ensures that Ryan grows up a moral child. Ryan spends his days singing and his mother greatly supports his talent. However, his adoptive father does not support him as he does not consider Ryan’s singing much of a talent. Reece Wade has already set a path in which his adoptive son is supposed to follow (Duralde, 2014).
According to him, Ryan should follow in his footsteps and work in the ministry. Regardless, Ryan ventures more into his music and begins to attend concerts with his friend, Dino. During one of the concerts, Ryan hears Drexel’s music, and it is clear that they resemble one another. According to Movie Clips Trailers (2014), Ryan is uncertain of music but seeing Drexel gives him the zeal to remain assertive. Nineteen seconds into the trailer, Ryan utters that an extraordinary thing happens to him when he is in the presence of music. Clearly, this shows that his Nature overcomes his Nurture.
As the movie continues, it is clear to note that passersby constantly bug Ryan concerning Drexel. They often ask whether the two are related in any way. However, Ryan does not want to be noticed because of Drexel. He has a passion for music thus he wants to be recognized for the same. As a matter of fact, Ryan goes ahead to write and produce his first song. Movie Clips Trailers (2014) show that Ryan does not stop regardless of people’s opinions. His Nature for music does not die down due to discouragement about his music. On the other hand, Drexel is rarely shown in the movie but the few instances clearly depict his character and personality as individual.
It is necessary to observe the portrayal of Nature vs. Nurture debate in “The Identical” movie. As mentioned, the debate is about the ways in which human beings acquire their respective characteristics. These traits are either obtained genetically or through their surroundings. In the movie, it is primary to observe that Ryan and Drexel exhibit similar and different traits. The similarities seen relate to their physique, passion and calling. On the other hand, their different traits come from the different lifestyles in which they are familiar (Moore, 2001).
As observed, the first time Ryan encounters Drexel; there is a close resemblance in their looks and voice. For this reason, it is clear to note that Nature overpowers Nurture in the debate. Here, Nature is taking its course in analyzing Ryan’s and Drexel’s physical characteristics. In fact, most people confuse Ryan for Drexel, and they wonder whether they are related. In psychology, this form of confusion often arises when individuals are not able to tell identical twins apart. Ryan and Drexel inherited their genetic make-up from William and Hellen Hensley hence the great resemblance (Moore, 2001).
Furthermore, it is not coincidental that both Ryan and Drexel have a passion for music. This trait in the brothers is also a characteristic determined by Nature. It is crucial to observe that these genetic characteristics are not only acquired from biological parents but, also any other family member (Myers, 2014). In fact, they may even be obtained from grandparents, cousins or even great grandparents. These two brothers may have inherited their love for music from one of the family members of their lineage. Myers (2014) outlines that twins separated at birth often exhibit many similarities. His opinion greatly applied in this movie as Ryan and Drexel are alike in many ways.
Also, it is important to observe the differences between the two brothers. In this movie, Nurture takes its course as the boys are raised in two different settings (Ridley, 2004). Regardless of their relation, they are brought up by two different groups of people. As seen, Ryan is raised and molded in a church while Drexel is famous and is used to the worldly lifestyle. The movie describes Ryan as obedient and faithful to the Word of God. As a matter of fact, he sings in church and is greatly devoted to the church. However, Drexel indulges in worldly pleasures such as alcohol (Dowling, 2011).
Moreover, the movie portrays Drexel as a sad individual compared to his brother, Ryan. It may be clear that Ryan’s life is happier than Drexel’s irrespective of the fame and popularity. Additionally, it is noted that Ryan does not take alcohol on grounds of his morals. During the scene where Dino hauls Ryan to a bar, he orders alcohol but does not take it. He is in a sad mood but, does not get himself to drink the Whiskey. As a result, Ryan settles for a nonalcoholic drink instead. Through this scene, there is a great difference between Ryan and Drexel. As Drexel is constantly consuming alcohol, Ryan is a teetotaler. There are many differences exhibited in identical twins. In fact, most of the similarities are often highly exaggerated on grounds that the individuals should be identical (Myers, 2014).
Regardless of the differences in the two brothers, the important fact is that Nature overpowers Nurture in this debate. The movie portrays a spiritual Ryan but, with time, the elements of Nature take the best of him. It is seen that he develops the habit of sneaking out of the house to attend music concerts. He is passionate about music and does not let his religious upbringing get in the way of that. As previously mentioned; Reece Wade raises Ryan in a strict home and brings him up in his image (Movie Clips Trailers, 2014).
However, it is clear that Ryan’s Nature is stronger than his Nurture. His Nature is inclined toward music and not the Church. In fact, it should be realized that the church is Reece Wade’s Nature and calling. The movie portrays that Ryan later becomes disinterested with matters of his adoptive father’s faith and the church. Ryan shares his frustrations with his mother concerning his “calling”(Movie Clips Trailers, 2014). His mother gives him pieces of advice before he confronts his father. Ryan’s Nature takes a toll on him hence he uses his adoptive father’s words against him. He informs Reece Wade that he wants to fulfill the calling given to him by God. In this case, Ryan’s calling is his music. He tells his adoptive father that he has no interest in following a path in which he has no passion.
Also, this movie gives knowledge regarding individuals’ paths and calling. It shows that the Supreme Being has set aside a path that each person should follow. Whether one should be a Reverend or a musician is all in a plan. Forcing an individual to specialize in a field away from their interests may result in great losses. In such as case, if Ryan joined the Ministry, he would be forced to sneak constantly out of the church to attend music concerts. He may come across members of his congregation, and they would change their views about him and the Ministry (Duralde, 2014).
Also, this act would negatively reflect on Reece Wade, whose obsession is to create Ryan to become like him. Therefore, the movie shows that the elements of Nature are more important than Nurture (Ridley, 2004). They may assist individuals in saving themselves from certain tempting situations. As a musician, Ryan would comfortably attend music concerts without worrying about portraying a negative picture of himself and his family.
Regardless of his few instances, Drexel’s Nature also overpowers his Nurture. This fact is clearly noted regarding his dedication and devotion to his music. As presented by the film, Drexel seems sad, lonely and unhappy. His life of fame has taken away his social life thus he has lost his identity. Drexel lives to please his fans and improve his music to sustain his position in the society. Often, celebrities have to portray a certain lifestyle to interest their fans (Movie Clips Trailers, 2014). These differences between Drexel and Ryan may be perceived as a result of growth and maturation. As Drexel focuses more on his music, it is clear that his Nature greatly overpowers his Nurture (Ridley, 2004).
Likewise, Ryan’s Nature completely overcomes Nurture in his life. He confronts his adoptive father and openly informs him that he wants to follow his path of music. Ryan is stern with his decision regardless of Reece Wade’s sentiments. As earlier mentioned, Reece does not support his adoptive son’s choices. His goal is to mold Ryan into his image and likeness. Irrespective of this, Ryan does not change his mind and musters enough courage to defend his path of interest (Dowling, 2011).
It is clear that this paper has handled ways in which Nature overpowers Nurture in Ryan’s and Drexel’s lives. Most importantly, the paper has explored that Nature may be more fulfilling as compared to Nurture. As mentioned, Nurture deals with one’s surroundings and the environment. Ryan grows up in a happy, righteous and morally upright home. However, other aspects of his environment do not complete his life. Ryan wants to focus on his music but, his Nurture is against his passionate path. Consequently, he ends up picking his Nature over Nurture. This paper has critically analyzed the Nature vs. Nurture Debate in “The Identical” movie.
Dowling, J. E. (2011). The Great Brain Debate: Nature or Nurture?. Princeton: Princeton University Press.
Duralde Alonso (2014). “The Identical Review”: Twin Elvises + Judeo-Christian Messaging= ‘Oogieloves’ For Adults. Retrieved from HYPERLINK “https://www.thewrap.com/the-identical-review-ray-liotta-ashley-judd-faith-based/” https://www.thewrap.com/the-identical-review-ray-liotta-ashley-judd-faith-based/
Myers, David G. (2014). Psychology: Tenth Edition. New York, NY: Worth Pub.
Moore, D. S. (2001). The dependent gene: The fallacy of “nature vs. nurture”. New York: Henry Holt.
Movie Clips Trailers (2014). The “Identical” Official Trailer. Retrieved from HYPERLINK “https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RVrOTMc0wIo” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RVrOTMc0wIo
Ridley, M. (2004). Nature via nurture: Genes, experience and what makes us human.