Rebel Moon 2: The Scargiver Review



Summary

  • The emotional depth added to
    Rebel Moon 2
    finally creates characters worth rooting for, especially Djimon Hounsou’s Titus.
  • Snyder’s typical slow-motion action is actually used effectively in an epic, frenzied third act.
  • The Scargiver
    rises off the ashes of the first film with solid characters and a satisfying climax, even if you’ve seen this all before and you know where it’s going.

Rebel Moon – Part Two: The Scargiver rescues Zack Snyder’s Netflix franchise by standing on its own creative feet and establishing a viable path forward. The bar was admittedly set low for the sequel. The original, A Child of Fire, was a colossal disappointment that felt like a stale retread of Star Wars and Akira Kurosawa’s Seven Samurai. The Scargiver rises off those ashes as an ass-kicking, sci-fi actioner with legitimate character development. Djimon Hounsou, basically mute in the first film, resurrects his Gladiator gravitas to rally a ragtag, motley crew to bloody glory. They deliver a wicked blow to a ruthless enemy in blockbuster style.

The Scargiver has Kora (Sofia Boutella), Gunnar (Michiel Huisman), and the gang returning to the red moon of Veldt for their showdown with the Imperium. They have survived Kai’s (Charlie Hunnam) betrayal and Darrian’s (Ray Fisher) death, but don’t know that the vile Admiral Atticus Noble (Ed Skrein) has been reborn to thwart them. Hagen (Ingvar Sigurdsson), Sam (Charlotte Maggi), and the villagers welcome their heroes with a grand feast. They have dutifully continued farming the Motherworld’s grain ransom. Aris (Sky Yang), who’s fallen for Sam and chosen her side, falsifies status reports back to his commanders.

General Titus (Hounsou) graciously accepts the warm hospitality but infuses realism back into a dire situation. They face a vastly superior enemy with little firepower and resources. The first order of business is to collect the grain in record time. This is what the Imperium wants and can be tactically used against them. The rousing Titus warns that everyone must fight, many will die, and victory is not assured. His words inspire bravery, not fear. Everyone believes his legendary leadership and battlefield prowess will give them a chance.

Scargiver Has an Emotional Core Lacking from the First Film

Rebel Moon – Part Two: The Scargiver

2.5/5

Release Date April 19, 2024

Runtime 122 Minutes

Studio(s) Grand Electric , The Stone Quarry

Distributor(s) Netflix

Franchise(s) Rebel Moon

Pros

  • Rebel Moon 2 adds much more emotional depth to the story.
  • A great performance from Djimon Hounsou.

Cons

  • The film is still just a rehash of Seven Samurai, and is very predictable.

The bond between the villagers and their defenders grows as they race to secure the crops. Even the hardened Nemesis (Doona Bae) cannot help but feel empathy for the cause. Titus wants his fighters to come clean about their past sins. The truth can secure their solidarity and light the way forward against a seemingly indomitable enemy. Millius (Elise Duffy), Tarak (Staz Nair), and Nemesis tell their horrifying stories, but a reticent Kora still refuses to acknowledge her shame. Titus is the only one who knows why she’s the Motherworld’s most wanted criminal. As Noble’s fearsome dreadnought approaches, Jimmy (Anthony Hopkins), the robot knight who laid down his arms, must choose to fight again.

Related Rebel Moon: What Are the Oracle Swords and Where Did Laser Swords Originate in Sci-Fi? Zack Snyder drew inspiration from Star Wars’ lightsaber, just as George Lucas crafted the lightsaber from previous sci-fi stories.

The Scargiver succeeds in establishing an emotional core. This was a primary flaw in the first film. The characters were tossed together like a flavorless salad. You didn’t root for them because there wasn’t enough exposition. The time spent here delving into their motivations reveals warriors willing to make the ultimate sacrifice. Each has suffered immeasurable losses under the Imperium’s totalitarian grip. Years hiding in the shadows reinforced a shameful obsolescence. Now, there’s a chance to quench the thirst for revenge.

Hounsou’s rah-rah, let’s give ’em hell, is a constant refrain that achieves two important goals. His dialogue swells confidence like a tsunami. It’s the adrenaline pumping response needed for a suicide mission. This is why the villagers don’t run, hide, and give up what was slaved tirelessly to build. They choose to go down swinging. The audience shares that bullies beware sentiment. The Imperium might slaughter them, but they’ll give a hard lesson and hopefully inspire others.

Slow-Motion Carnage

The Scargiver holds its action cards until dropping the boom in a savage third act. Snyder (Dawn of the Dead, Watchmen, Man of Steel) unleashes a fusillade of slow-motion carnage. This methodology was awfully tiresome in the original. It works here because Snyder built the right amount of tension before pulling the trigger. The high-speed cameras and ultra-slow frame rates capture the personal stakes of a frenzied, epic battle. Hounsou again steals the film with a snarling, fiery countenance and deadly delivery. Noble’s overconfidence is squashed like a bug, “General Titus hasn’t lost his touch.”

Related 15 Movies like Rebel Moon to Watch Next Zack Snyder’s Rebel Moon is a satisfying treat for sci-fi fans, and there are loads of similar movies worth checking out.

The Scargiver has few surprises. A standout scene for Kora explains what happened to the royal family. Everything else pretty much plays out as expected. You can accurately guess who’s left standing. The film’s detractors will undoubtedly be critical of its predictability. But the saving grace is pure entertainment value, the pivotal ingredient A Child of Fire sorely lacked.

The Scargiver’s granular plot, solid characters, and gun-blazing climax doesn’t suck. Those aspects have to be judged fairly and not discounted by negative feelings from the first film. There’s a lot more to tell in Snyder’s space opera. Let’s hope this better foundation is a positive sign of what’s to come.

Rebel Moon – Part Two: The Scargiver is a production of The Stone Quarry and Grand Electric. It is currently available to stream exclusively on Netflix, and you can do so through the link below:

Watch Rebel Moon 2

You can view the original article HERE.

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