Zack Snyder’s “Rebel Moon,” a new science-fiction film, has drawn many comparisons to the Star Wars saga, but a closer look reveals why it wouldn’t have worked as a Star Wars movie. Originally pitched to Lucasfilm as a Star Wars film, “Rebel Moon” eventually evolved into its own universe, distinct from the iconic franchise.
Creating a Unique Universe
“Rebel Moon” excels in establishing its own universe, introducing elements like the Imperium, the Motherworld, sentient robots known as “Jimmies,” and the resistance led by Devra and Darrian Bloodaxe. Had it been a Star Wars film, these unique aspects would have been constrained by the existing Star Wars canon, potentially limiting Snyder’s creative freedom.
The Portrayal of Violence
A key difference between “Rebel Moon” and Star Wars is the portrayal of violence. Star Wars, particularly through the Jedi, often emphasizes non-violence and defense over attack. Iconic moments like Luke Skywalker’s refusal to kill Darth Vader in “Return of the Jedi” highlight this philosophy. In contrast, “Rebel Moon” glorifies violence in its action sequences, focusing on the brutality of its characters’ actions, which diverges significantly from the Star Wars approach to conflict.
Star Wars has a generational appeal, accessible to both children and adults. “Rebel Moon,” with its graphic violence and mature themes, including scenes of sexual assault, deviates from this family-friendly approach. Such content would make it unsuitable for younger audiences, a key demographic for Star Wars.
Character development is a cornerstone of Star Wars storytelling, with characters like Luke, Leia, and Han Solo becoming beloved due to their depth and arcs. “Rebel Moon,” however, struggles with character development. Its protagonist, Kora, and other characters lack the personality and backstory that would make audiences care about them, a stark contrast to the rich characterizations in Star Wars.
Star Wars villains are known for their complexity and inner conflict, such as Darth Vader and Kylo Ren. Rebel Moon’s” villains, like Admiral Atticus Noble and Regent Balisarius, lack this nuance, appearing one-dimensional in comparison to Star Wars’ iconic antagonists.
While “Rebel Moon” is an entertaining and intriguing film in its own right, its differences in universe-building, portrayal of violence, audience accessibility, character development, and villain complexity illustrate why it wouldn’t have worked as a Star Wars movie. Snyder’s film establishes its own identity, separate from the Star Wars universe, proving that some stories are better suited to their own galaxies far, far away.