What if tomorrow is another judgment day? Helmed by Doug Liman, ‘Edge of Tomorrow’, also known as ‘Live Die Repeat,’ is a loopy and mind-bending 2014 sci-fi epic. Combine aliens with time manipulation and it proves to be the perfect recipe for a puzzle that instantly grasps sci-fi fans. The story follows American public relations officer Bill Cage, imprisoned in a time loop after killing an Alpha on the battlefield on the coast of France.
Now, with the resources, and the manifold experiences over an endless number of reboots, he must team up with war veteran Rita Vrataski to lead a mission against the sentient beings. The final scenes unfold in the darkness, and then a twist ending boggles the audience out of their minds. If you are looking for answers, let us help you to flatten the time. SPOILERS AHEAD.
Edge of Tomorrow Plot Synopsis
Five years ago, in 2015, the aliens were first sighted in Hamburg, Germany, and they have been at war with humans ever since. However, as these “mimics” seem to have countered every move of humans till now, humans have found little success apart from the Battle of Verdun, won under the leadership of Sergeant Rita Vrataski, who has earned herself the moniker “Angel of Verdun.” However, the public reaction towards the image of Vrataski is polarized due to her militant ways, and people call her “Full Metal Bitch” (owing to her ‘Fullmetal Alchemist’ outfit) behind her back.
In the present day, American public relations officer Major William Cage is sent to Britain, and General Brigham of the UDF (United Defense Force) sends him straight to battle on the coast of France. William Cage is not cut out for battle, and he tries his level best to convince this simple truth to Master Sergeant Farell, who would hear none of Cage’s nagging. Farell thinks there is hope in the form of glorious combat, and Cage would prove his destiny to emerge a hero. After killing an alien in the battlefield massacre (an Alpha, to be precise), he takes a fatal blow himself. However, he wakes up in the training camp. Now, he has to team up with Rita and live the same day over and over until humans win the war.
Edge of Tomorrow Ending: What is a Mimic?
A mimic is an extraterrestrial species that invades planet Earth in the movie. As Dr. Carter, a specialist in advanced microbiology and an esteemed analyst (if a bit on edge) at Whitehall, divulges to Cage, these aliens, although separate bodied, are a symbiotic organism working as a neural network. We come to know that they possess the power to predict the future and manipulate time, which makes them pretty much invincible in combat. There are smaller drones, and there are rarer Alphas, who are like nodes in a neural network, while the Omega is the core of the network.
These are also sentient beings, and in a sinister twist, the aliens of the movie do not descend from the skies but emerge from underground, making them all the more horrific. While humans are not sure exactly how they appear, one thing is certain – they become visible and wait for humans to attack. As humans ravage the planet with explosives, the aliens do not have much to do other than ignite an initial spark. However, there is a way to win the war against the time-bending mimics, killing the Omega. After locating the Omega in a vision, Rita, Cage, and the J-Squad embark upon a deadly mission to take out the other-worldly creature.
Is Cage Immortal at the End?
It takes Cage endless time loops to be invincible in combat and figure out how to kill the mechanism. After discovering his ability to turn back time, Cage takes a few more loops to team up with the legendary Rita Vrataski. When she is convinced, she asks Cage to find her in the following timeline. Cage escapes the military training (with some difficulties) to see Rita.
Rita tells him about the mimics in detail, and subsequently, Dr. Carter finds out the location of the Omega, the neural center of the alien horde. According to him, it is the Curnera Dam in Germany. Cage has a vision where he encounters the Omega near the dam. However, the information turns out to be a fabrication fed to the humans by the mimics to thwart them off the course of victory.
The Omega is nowhere near the dam, but Cage and Rita see hope in the prototype machine of Dr. Carter. Called a transponder, the device can connect to the neural network of the mimics, and Cage can therefore easily find the location of the Omega. After some loopy replays, Cage and Rita successfully break into Whitehall and retrieve the machine after delivering a convincing speech to General Brigham. Rita hooks Cage up with the transponder, and in his vision, Cage finds the actual location of the Omega. He sees the Louvre Museum of Paris and is submerged into what looks like a body of water.
Cage goes back to the place where he engages in combat with Skinner. Only this time, he manages to convince the J-Squad to fight the battle. As Cage even knows that Skinner had a teacher in second grade called Miss Polio, Skinner is more than ready to fight the fight with him. Rita shows up, Ford is not Ford’s real name, and the team is convinced that Cage is omnipotent. They steal a chopper and fly to Paris to strike down the Omega and end the war for all. In the end, Rita and Cage have a moment, and after a hurried kiss, Rita tries to draw the Alpha’s attention while Cage advances to tackle the Omega himself.
Cage inserts many grenades into the Omega to make it blast off to pieces in a visceral, heroic feat. After the act, a rippling wave emerges from Louvre, and we see several mimics dead on the streets. Cage wakes up in a different timeline, sitting in a helicopter. We can certainly conclude that even if Cage dies in some timelines, if the aliens can conjure an infinite number of timelines, Cage must be present in some of them. After slaying the Omega, Cage pretty much proves to be the nemesis of the mimics. Therefore, there is a fat chance that he is immortal and destined to live his death repeatedly, although the aliens seek to take the ability from him.
Did Cage Become the New Omega?
Okay, Cage becoming the new Omega is a theory and a plausible one. After assailing an Alpha in Operation Downfall, Cage comes back to life and enacts the same death over and over again, getting closer to the end of the loop in the process. With some help from Rita Vrataski, Cage becomes a formidable warrior and a force to be reckoned with. He comes to know that he has attained the ability of the Alpha to turn back time. However, he also becomes aware that the operation is seemingly a significant threat for the aliens, as it possesses the possibility to obliterate them from the face of the planet.
As Cage obtains the power from Alpha after assailing one of them, it is also possible that a part of it gets embedded in him when he destroys the Omega. He may attain some new powers due to this development, and the rumored sequel will divulge more on this characteristic development of Cage. Later on in the story, it seems as if Cage can read the minds of the people he meets in his journey, but that can be a result of conversations with them in the previous timelines. At least that is the suggestion that the movie gives, anyway. However, with the power of the Omega, can Cage read the human minds for real? There is a sequel well underway, and we hope to see a development in this line.
How Does the Time Loop Work?
The Alpha can speculatively predict the future and manipulate time, thus winning most wars against humans. When they sense threats, they conceal the human threat in a time loop. However, when a human assails an Alpha, some of its features get embedded within the human, including the ability to defeat death. According to the research of Dr. Carter, the Alphas are pretty rare — one in 6.18 million to be precise. And when Cage kills one of these guys, he wakes up in the military camp every time he dies. In the Battle of Verdun, Rita possessed the same power, and that is how she defeated the alien horde.
Time gets frozen in a loop with this power until Cage can kill the Omega and release himself from the loop. Cage has to convince everyone of his knowledge every time he regenerates. Still, the training proves effective, and Cage embarks upon a mission to Louvre for frontal combat with an Omega. But the final sequence sees Cage waking up in a helicopter after killing an Omega, which makes the audience refigure many equations. Are there more Omegas hidden underneath the planet? Are they using the time loop as a defense mechanism to keep the humans from winning Operation Downfall? In this movie, the aliens control the time loop mechanism. Cage is still in a loop, which finally suggests that the aliens are still alive.
Why Did Cage Wake up in the Helicopter?
This is the most puzzling question that bugs the viewers. In every previous case, Cage wakes up on September 1, 2020, in the camp, where he reports to disagreeing and lofty Master Sergeant Farell. However, in the final sequence, Cage wakes up in the helicopter, suggesting that the loop has been reset. He wakes up on the day he flies to London, at a time before his reporting to Farell. He has not yet reported to General Brigham, as Montgomery only welcomes him to London. As he enters the office of the UDF, General Brigham relays the report of the ripple wave in Paris in the media. There is hope for humans to win the battle, as Russia and China are advancing towards Europe and the humans are ready to attack the western front.
But how does Cage wake up in the helicopter? Going by the theory proposed in the movie, the time reset duration is 24 hours. In the loop, Cage wakes up to report to the Master Sergeant, spends the day at the camp, goes to the battlefield, and is killed. He finds Rita, and then he diverges from his previous path to get the training he needs. However, in the finale, they invade the Louvre at night and thus evade the genocide on the following morning. As he mitigates the war before it can even happen, he wakes up earlier in the timeline.
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