Moral Positions: Fat Man and Little Boy versus Gojira
The Moral Positions of the Scientists in
Fat Man and Little Boy and Gojira
Both Fat Man and Little Boy and Gojira were inspired by the same events. Fat Man and Little Boy was inspired by the process that it took to make the atomic bombs in the 1940's, while Gojira was inspired by the devastation and after-effects of the explosions in Japan. Each movie explored the moral implications of using science to create weapons of destruction. Ultimately, the need to "save human lives" wins and the weapons are used to defeat the enemy. However, this victory does not come without its fair share of sacrifices.
The scientists in Fat Man and Little Boy began their project doubting that they could even create the finished product. With one ingenious idea after another, they did not think about the morality of their project until after they saw the raw power of the bomb when they first tested it successfully. The scientists claimed that their leader Oppenheimer was "playing God" by continuing with the construction. It was after the test detonation that the scientists realized what kind of power they now held. Who were they to unleash this on the world? Are all of the lives going to be lost worth it? These are examples of questions that plagued the scientists as they worked toward the finished atomic bombs. At one point the scientist get wind of a petition to introduce the plan to the government and have a discussion on the morality of the project. This idea got shut down pretty quickly as politics likes to do with things that it doesn't like. Their strife with the project becomes even more tightened by an accident when John Cusack's character is forced to grab radioactive material to avoid certain disaster. He dies a painful death after spending days in the hospital, which causes the scientists to give a major pushback to the authorities. Despite all of the moral dilemmas that the scientists have to deal with, Oppenheimer pushes the project to completion. This leads to the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki (not pictured in the movie).
There are many varying moral positions in Gojira from all of the scientists. Essentially, Godzilla was either released from its slumber or created by the radioactivity in Japan. It creates massive destruction in many cities, so the Japanese begin to work on ways to defend themselves from this ancient monster. Dr. Yamane-hakase believes that it is not their duty to destroy this species: "It's impossible! Godzilla absorbed massive amounts of atomic radiation and yet it still survived! What do you think could kill it? Instead, we should focus on why it is still alive. That should be our top priority!" He recognizes the scientific value of Godzilla and does not want to waste it by destroying it. This of course is impossible because Godzilla would destroy everything before they could accomplish any meaningful studies. Dr. Serizawa is caught in the midst of his researching what he calls the "Oxygen-Destroyer" which can liquefy any living tissue. His fiancé Emiko Yamane and friend Hideo Ogata find out about his invention and attempt to convince him to use it against Godzilla. Dr. Serizawa does not want to use his invention for destruction, because he knows that he can develop it into something that can be used for good. He ends up sacrificing himself to release the "Oxygen Destroyer," and he dies knowing that the weapon is being destroyed with him.