Regarding the movie as a meta text we understand that the man incarnates the creator par excellence.
The fact that mans creation rebels against him and destroys him is a very intriguing social and political statement. On the one hand we could interpret this metaphor as mans fundamental incapacity of creating something really important. The researcher not only did not improve his machine, but lost his life in the process. His goal was beyond common sense, romantic and idealistic and the denouement of the story demonstrates that whenever man abandons reason he is most likely to have a tragic ending. Naturally, the woman, who has a passive role, is in a certain way responsible for the dramatic denouement. This is a patriarchal perspective upon society and the meaning of the individual in the social web (constructed in strict relation to his or her gender). Man fails to be a true creator, instead he stand a chance at technological reproduction. The biological reproduction however is the one which wins over the technological one through the death of the researcher and the possibility for the woman to be pregnant.
More or less the same considerations can be drawn from Wells book. If in the movie Jeff Goldblum was trying to improve technology, Doctor Moreau is trying to improve the very human nature. In his experiments there is no respect for humanity. This, together with the terrible consequences of his work transform him into a monster. None of the people subject to his experiments reach a complete transformation.
All of them stop at half of the transformation process, achieving a double nature which gives them a monstrous dimension.
It is obvious that when men try to play god, the denouement can only be a tragic one. But could Doctor Moreau have been a woman? It is highly unlikely. It is difficult to imagine a woman scientist dedicated to the transformation of the human individual in that manner. This is yet another proof that the woman in general is associated with another type of creation- which is limited exclusively to biological reproduction. In both the movie and the book there is a strong ethical dimension which must be underlined when interpreting the development of the action. The religious implications in addition ought to be recognized in Doctor Moreaus case.
The magic mantra that the creatures must repeat in order to remind themselves that they are men and not beasts: “Not to go on all-fours; that is the Law. Are we not Men?/Not to suck up Drink; that is the Law. Are we not Men?/Not to eat Fish or Flesh; that is the Law. Are we not Men?/Not to claw the Bark of Trees; that is the Law. Are we not Men?/Not to chase other Men; that is the Law. Are we not Men?” (Wells, 73) demonstrates their very state of decay.
Wells, H.G. The island of Doctor Moreau, NY: Bartleby, 2000
The fly (directed by David Cronenberg), 1986.