Rebel Moon Part 1 ending explained

Cameron Frew
Sofia Boutella in Rebel Moon

With Rebel Moon: Part 2 – The Scargiver premiering on Netflix soon, catch yourself up with a recap of Part 1’s ending.

Rebel Moon: Part 2 will continue the story of Kora (Sofia Boutella), an Imperium soldier wanted for desertion (and “much more”) who crash-lands on a distant moon and tries to find peace. However, the Motherworld’s forces come a-knocking, forcing her to rally the best rebel fighters in the galaxy to protect her village and stop the oppression and violence for good. 

It was originally conceived as a Seven Samurai-inspired Star Wars story, and almost becoming a TV show. And while the first chapter of Snyder’s small-screen space opera wasn’t well-received, the new movie is just a few hours away from its release.

Given it’s a brand-new IP, keeping track of the Rebel Moon cast, all of the world-building and exactly what’s been set up for Part 2 can be a bit taxing – so, we’ve endeavoured to give you all the details you need right here. Spoilers to follow… obviously. 

Rebel Moon Part 1 ending explained 

Sofia Boutella in Rebel Moon

Rebel Moon Part 1 ends with Kora and her five companions (Gunnar, Tarak, Nemesis, General Titus, and Millius) returning to Veldt, now freed from the Imperium’s grip. However, Admiral Atticus Noble is still alive, and we see him taken to Regent Balisarius, who scolds him for failing to stop the rebellion and orders him to find Kora, his daughter. 

After Kora has gathered her team, including Darrian Bloodaxe (Ray Fisher) and a small accompanying army of warriors from King Levitica’s home of Sharaan, Kai confesses to her that he wants to leave his thieving days behind him and join her cause. So, they fly to Gondival, somewhat of a hub for stolen cargo, so he can ditch everything on his ship and make it a clean break, ensuring there’s no nicked skeletons in his closet. 

And then comes the twist: with everyone and everything off his ship, his boxes burst open with paralysers inside (big robots designed to scoop people up and lock them in place before they’re killed) and they manage to capture them all — bar Gunnar, who isn’t seen as much of a threat. Kai explains to Kora that the money was simply too good to turn down, between the massive fee for Titus alone and “the Scargiver”, her nickname in the Imperium. 

Noble arrives with his men and begins taunting Kora, before Kai gives Gunnar a nightmarish job: he asks him to complete the final stage of the paralyser by firing a rod through the back of her neck. At the last second, he pulls it out, frees Kora, and fires the gun into Kai’s head, kicking off a hectic, explosive firefight. 

The final frame of Rebel Moon

With the Imperium warship raining hellfire on the base and killing Bloodaxe’s troops, he picks up a spear and leaps onto its window, ramming it through and stabbing the pilot – not before they manage to shoot him twice with their pistol. In his dying moments, he leans on the joy stick and causes the aircraft to crash, separating Kora and Noble from everyone else. A visceral, brutal scrap ensues (you can expect plenty more of that in Snyder’s director’s cuts), with Kora briefly falling off the side before managing to climb back up. She grabs his cane and smacks him in the face, knocking out his teeth before falling off the platform to his death – or so we thought, but we’ll come back to that. 

After celebrating their victory against the Imperium, while acknowledging they’ll send more forces in due course, our final scene with Kora sees her returning home with her rebels. In the distance, they see Jimmy (Anthony Hopkins) in the field, now wearing some sort of makeshift crown. This is interesting for a few reasons: his purpose as a droid was to protect the king, and we heard him telling Sam (Charlotte Maggi) that she reminded him of the late princess. He’s clearly ready to fulfil a new role, be that of a protector, or perhaps even a ruler. 

Before the movie ends, it’s revealed Noble wasn’t killed on Gondival — he somehow survived being battered to death and plummeting god-knows-how far to the ground, only to be taken to Regent Balisarius and scolded for not quashing the insurgency. He’s transported to another realm via some bizarre fluid-and-robotics procedure; it appears that Noble may be augmented, or perhaps even a cybernetic organism.

Balisarius is furious. “In truth, I fear the head most endangered is yours,” he tells Noble, before ordering him to return to work and crush the rebellion. He doesn’t want Kora killed, either – not yet, anyway. His plan is far nastier: he wants to crucify her in the shadow of the senate. As Noble’s mind returns to his body, he screams awake, and the credits roll.

Rebel Moon: Part 1 is on Netflix now, while Part 2 starts streaming on April 19. In the meantime, read our interview with the cast and check out the best movies of 2024 so far.