Genre: Action, Adventure, Drama
Release Date: 22nd December, 2023
Cast: Jena Malone, Sofia Boutella, Ed Skrein
Director: Zack Snyder
Producer/s: Zack Snyder
Rebel Moon – Part One: A Child of Fire Movie Review Rating:
Star Cast: Sofia Boutella, Charlie Hunnam, Djimon Hounsou, Michiel Huisman, Staz Nair, Bae Donna, Ray Fisher, Ed Skrein and Anthony Hopkins
Director: Zack Snyder
What’s Good: The visuals and the world-building create a pretty interesting world to set the story in.
What’s Bad: The movie definitely feels like it is missing some connective tissue, and knowing there’s an extended version makes total sense.
Loo Break: The film’s pacing is quite fast, so unless you want to miss the introduction of some characters, there are no breaks here.
Watch or Not?: If you are looking for a fun space adventure or are a fan of Snyder and his work, this is a good watch.
Language: English (with subtitles).
Available On: Netflix
Runtime: 120 Minutes
There hasn’t been a more controversial and divisive director in recent times than Zack Snyder. We are talking about a director who loves kinetic cinema, creating iconic imagery, and tons of slow motion. The director’s style is not for everyone; it is evident by all the hate he receives online, and yet, I cannot help but not only like his work from a cinematic point of view but also root for him as a filmmaker who has his signature style and wants to tell his own stories; two things that seem to be missing quite a bit from today’s blockbuster landscape. Rebel Moon, his newest film, follows his tradition.
Rebel Moon – Part One: A Child of Fire Movie Review: Script Analysis
There is no question about it: Rebel Moon is a Zack Snyder film, and by this point, audiences know if they are going to hate it or love it; speaking for myself, I think I really love what Snyder has done here, from the impressive visuals that make me feel like I’m watching a Heavy Metal comic book brought to life, to the worldbuilding and the many creatures designs that permeate the entire runtime, I believe this is a solid piece of work that pulls from many places to then create its own thing.
The influences are many, and Snyder is not afraid to carry them on his sleeve. The film takes influence from history, calling his shadowy villain Balisarius, an apparent reference to Belisarius, one of the most famous and important military leaders from the Byzantine Empire, and then, of course, pulling from Akira Kurosawa himself taking the premise of the Seven Samurai while giving it a new context, just like the original Star Wars did with Kurosawa’s Hidden Fortress.
Many will say that the film lacks originality because of this, but Snyder is not doing anything different from what Lucas did in his moment. In the end, the mixture of different influences creates his own thing, but Snyder doesn’t have the advantage Lucas had when he created Star Wars because the ingredients are no longer as obscure as they were in the 1970s. However, if there is something that the movie really lacks, then it is the character development, and there is an apparent reason for it.
Rebel Moon has been sold to audiences as a two-part movie, with the next film coming in April 2024; this already tells you that Part One is just a fraction of the story; on top of that, Snyder and Netflix have already said to us that there is an extended R-rated director’s cut on the way, and so, the version we have available right now is nothing more than the compromised version of the film. Many scenes are cut short, and I’m afraid that most of the cut content involves characters talking and interacting with each other.
Rebel Moon – Part One: A Child of Fire Movie Review: Star Performance
Snyder clearly loves his characters, giving each of them very cool introductions, but even then, it is easy to see that many more conversations are missing from this cut. Some characters are introduced and don’t interact with anyone else for the remainder of the film. We can only hope the Director’s Cut can come soon enough because the film needs more time with the characters.
Nevertheless, even when the characters have very little screen time to get to know them well, the actors do a great job with the material. This might just be Boutella’s best role to date. The actress is well-known for being very physical, but here, she does very well with her line delivery and her emotional moments. She is the center of the film, and she carries it with a sense of confidence we haven’t seen before from here. Meanwhile, Ed Skrein does a fantastic job being despicable as Admiral Noble, and many will soon see the irony in his name.