Full spoilers follow for Rebel Moon Part 1 – A Child of Fire. You have been warned.
Zack Snyder has explained how the massive plot unfolds Rebel Moon Part One – A Child of Fire was on the map from the start.
With the last of the new Netflix movies of 2023 hitting the platform on December 21 in the US (December 22 internationally), Snyder diehards and other film fans have no doubt seen the filmmaker’s latest big-budget film. If you belong to that contingent, you know about the major character betrayals that take place in the final act.
This is your final warning: we are about to enter big spoiler area for Rebel moon part 1. Turn back now if you haven’t seen it yet.
After assembling her band of warriors to protect Veldt from the Motherworld, aka the tyrannical galactic superpower, Kora (Sofia Boutella) and her crew make their way to the spaceport known as Gondival before heading to the moon-based outpost travel to make their last stand. However, they are ambushed by Motherworld’s Imperium forces – led by the callous Admiral Atticus Noble (Ed Skrein) – who see the group captured after the surprise attack.
How did the Empire know where they were? There was a traitor in their ranks and it was none other than Kai (Charlie Hunnam), the space pilot mercenary – we should have known! – who originally agreed to help Kora and Gunnar (Michiel Huisman) assemble their merry band of insurgents. Make Netflix viewers around the world call Kai all sorts of names, including traitor, conniving, cheater, and probably harsher words than these.
With so many cryptic characters – whose backstories are largely shrouded in mystery – seemingly joining forces to aid Kora’s defense of Veldt, why was Kai selected as Rebel Moonis Judas? Speaking to Ny Breaking ahead of the space fantasy epic’s release, Snyder filled me in on the reasons behind that decision.
“It was always Kai,” the writer-director said when I asked him if there were other characters who might have filled that role. “I saw it as a mythological misdirection in this genre. His journey should have been one of redemption and then there’s the opportunity for him and Kora to have some sort of love interest.
“It also seems unlikely that Gunnar or Kai would screw up the group, since they’re the least likely characters to do that, so I thought it would be fun to have one of them commit the sin. But we picked Kai early and that’s who we stuck with.”
Unfortunately for Kai, his plan backfires and, much to the delight of those watching the film on the world’s best streaming service, he gets his comeuppance before the credits roll. The timid Gunnar, who is not tied to any of the so-called ‘Imperium’Beetle juice chair’ torture devices because he is not seen as a common thread, he becomes the hero of the hour by freeing his fellow prisoners before killing Kai.
Some viewers may be sad to see Hunnam’s time in the film Rebel Moon universe ends prematurely, but we’ll see more of the character in the future. Snyder is currently working on an R-rated director’s cut (one that will test your runtime limits) of the franchise’s first entry and since it will be an hour longer than the original PG-13 edition, we’ll see more of Kai in the extended version. If you disapproved of the length of that film, you’re not alone – some of the cast couldn’t believe how long Rebel Moon‘s director’s cut will be too.