Annihilation Explained

by birtanpublished on September 6, 2020

Annihilation is a new sci-fi movie based on a book by Jeff Vandermeer it's about an alien place that grows and mutates and about the people who it changes it explores themes of life and death raises some cool mysteries and builds on the ideas of the book the story follows an

Expedition into the mysterious area ex wilderness surrounded by a strange border called the shimmer anyone who enters doesn't return and the border is growing the team in the movie includes the biologist Lena the psychologist

Ventress and the scientists Josie Kass and Anja together they enter the area and they find mutant life-forms like these colorful growths and strange hybrid creatures like a plant with different species of flower an alligator

With teeth like a shark and a man with slithering snake like guts there are plants growing in human shapes and a mutant bear creature that speaks with casas voice after it killed sir so the area makes new life forms by merging

Existing ones together but there's also duplication making copies of things there's a mutant deer that mimics another deers movement there's a double of leaner which copies her movement on her face and we learned that Lena's

Husband Kane who returned from area X is actually an alien copy of the real Kane who committed suicide the area duplicates other stuff too like by the end of the movie Lena gets a tattoo that she didn't have at the beginning it

Starts out as a bruise but develops into this aura Boras design a copy of that same tattoo on Anya and on this dead guy the aura Boris symbolizes a cycle of life and death there's also a house in Area X that looks just like Lena's place

Back home so the area doesn't just duplicate animals it duplicates images and even places based on memories the area effects light and radio and magnetism it affects the team's minds and it even affects time the team loses

A few days at the start so the area distorts duplicates merges mutates and creates in a process Josie calls and it all seems to come from some alien presence in this lighthouse the movie shows that it's something

Extraterrestrial there are shots of a meteor coming from space and hitting the lighthouse leap don't know what the alien wants or if it wants at all the movie suggests it's like a cancer unthinking cells that just

Grow and spread so while the alien in his movie represents growth the humans represent self-destruction Ventris says almost all of us self-destruct it's coded into us each character hurts

Themselves somehow Josie cuts herself Anya is an addict Ventress has cancer and enters the area as a sort of suicide Lina has an affair with her do she work colleague who she hates which hurts a relationship with her husband Kane who

She loves and Kane knows about Lina's affair which might be partly why he volunteered for a dangerous mission to area X even this tattoo represents self-destruction it's a snake eating itself destroying

Itself so the humans in this movie self-destruct and this is actually how they beat the alien in the end Lina gives a grenade to the alien double that's mimicking her she teaches it to blow itself up and the alien learns this

Self-destruction because that's its function to duplicate and assimilate it assimilates its own annihilation so the double burns and takes the lighthouse and shimmer down with it humanity beats the alien not through

Heroics or strength but through our own flaws and weaknesses at the end of the movie Lina reunites with Kane who she now knows is actually an alien clone and the Kane asks whether she is really Lina the movie ends with Lina's eyes glowing

Bright which implies some kind of alien juju so maybe this Lina is actually an alien clone maybe the Shema didn't really fall it just expanded to include the whole world the ending is deliberately ambiguous but this Lina

Probably is the real Lina because we saw the mimic laner burn and the real Lina had been in affected with glowing mutation from early on that glows nothing new so the ending might not mean that Lina is an

Alien it means that human Leena has changed she told the alien had a self-destruct maybe the alien taught her to grow so the movies and exploration of life and death growth and change the book

Explores similar ideas but the story is quite different like area X in the book doesn't create much new Mutant life it's more about assimilation people who enter the area are transformed to become a part of the natural environment so

There's a dolphin with a human eye and a fox made of human cells as well as these creepy plant people the area absorbs everything into itself and it spreads by expanding the border and by sending out clones to replace humans the mimicry and

Doubling is maybe like a camouflage used to hide at slow growth to replace everything with an alien copy the book hints that there's some kind of intelligence behind this like in the movie the lighthouse has a spooky HR

Giger alien basement but the book has a whole tunnel structure separate to the lighthouse it's like an alien upside down copy of the lighthouse and it has a long spiral staircase descending down with fungus forming words on the walls

It reads where lies the strangling fruit that came from the hand of the sinner I shall bring forth the seeds of the dead and it goes on and on like that it's as though the alien is trying to absorb human ideas as well as human bodies the

Spiraling shape of the words looks kind of like DNA and the border is like a cell wall membrane so the whole area seems kind of like a biological cell which lends itself to the cancer metaphor a tumor growing on the world in

The book none of the characters have names they just called the biologist the psychologist anthropologist and surveyor their relationships are more cold and suspicious the psychologist uses hypnotism to control the others makes

Them forget things and limits what they the government agency the southern rage is super mysterious and manipulative they lie to the group withhold information it's almost like they're experimenting on the expedition members

As much as on the area and the protagonist the biologist is a complicated highly introverted character she's sometimes an unreliable narrator who misleads the reader so the book is super psychological tense and paranoid

But it's also about the environment for all the drama and mystery the story is also a love letter to the beauty and the strangeness of nature so if you want to go deeper into area X you can listen to the annihilation novel now for free at

Audible.com/asap look of your choice with a free trial and they have thousands of audiobooks on offer if you've already read annihilation you might like the little-known Game of Thrones series and it's spin-off books

Like Duncan egg in the world book to check amount sign up at audible.com slash ASX or text ASX to 500 500 thanks to matty asthma for this light house artwork and thanks to the patrons including skyler Rudovsky

Candace brook matt Hankel and kick master she is you

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