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At the end Cage is covered in the Omega blood and the time is reset to a different previous waking point in time compared with the reset point in the rest of the movie. The Omega is responsible for the resets, so if it is killed how does it do this?

Therefore, it seems the Omega blood still has the ability to reset time. So doesn't this suggest the Omega resetted itself?

I think that the Omega did reset itself (to its own reset point) after being killed, the high energy peak that is mentioned in the end could be caused by it moving itself to a new location and this moving may explain why the aliens are being beat (at that time), especially since this happens before Cage spoke to the general and could have killed the Omega (thus the Omega was not killed yet at this point in time).

Also, why didn't the Omega reset the time when it was aware it was being attacked? Does it really need the trigger of an Alpha dying?

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Yes, I'd say so. I don't think there's any clear evidence regarding the Omega's status (or the Mimics in general) - at least not within the movie.

I'd also like to refer to my answer on this question regarding different reset points:

How about this theory? I think it's a bit different to and might be hard to understand, based on how we perceive the story as a linear movie:

After watching the movie, I still wondered how one or more entities would be able to somehow alter time in the whole universe to create the resets. A bit like The Butterfly Effect? Nah, didn't really make any sense to me.

But then I've had the idea to understand the resets in a different way:

The Mimics aren't able to time travel or reset time in any way. However, they're able to somehow transfer knowledge/memories back in time utilizing something in their blood.

While watching the movie, we always notice Cage waking up, obviously shocked by the death he experienced just moments ago. But what if he just got that memory that very moment (or just before) similar to how dreaming works.

[...]

So the only question this doesn't answer: Why is the Omega gone after the last "jump cut"? Did it retreat or hide, since it knew the humans now possess the knowledge of how their "mind trick" works (even if it's just speculation)?

And that's exactly the point in your question. Unless there's some more information in some source outside the movie, I don't think there's any clear answer (and still the possibility for a sequel?).

Also, let's just assume we're indeed talking about time travelling (not just transferring knowledge), why should the Omega be gone? It died in the future, it's not like it dies in the past as well (unless there's some connection that didn't get mentioned). As such the possibility of a retreat or hiding somehwere would be the most logical conclusion to me.

  • If they send back memories in time, it's like having vision of a possible future. Which does not explain why this vision alters the possible "real" state in the past at the end of the movie (unless the Omega had the same vision and is moving because it knows a possible future). If this is the explanation then this porting of memories shows possible outcomes to the "traveller". But it doesn't explain why the Omega was killed in the end even before he spoke to the general... – invalid_id Oct 13 '14 at 7:55
  • Yep, the Omega... it's always a problem, no matter whether you transfer information or time travel back into your own body, especially considering it happens upon death, so the Omega's deah isn't something you'd call an exception. – Mario Oct 13 '14 at 7:57
  • The Omega is what makes the movie interesting. You're theory is interesting but it doesn't really answer my question directly. – invalid_id Oct 13 '14 at 7:58
  • I agree, it's no definitive answer, but I'd be surprised if there's one other than it depends on whether they've made enough money to make a sequel interesting. :) – Mario Oct 13 '14 at 8:01
  • I hope they do, but that doesn't make the ending of this single movie an open or closed ending. – invalid_id Oct 13 '14 at 8:36
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The ending was supposed to be this vague. In an interview with Christopher McQuarrie he says:

“I was always arguing it has to end on the helicopter,” he explained. “You have to be thrown back to wondering, ‘Did the movie even happen? Did any of this really happen?’ To that end, there were a million things you had to do with the writing and visually, to serve that ending. That presented a lot of challenges and debate for us. We really struggled to deliver what the movie needed to be emotionally. I know the ending was somewhat controversial, with some people who didn’t like it. I think the only way to make those people happy would to end the movie in a way that wasn’t happy. We weren’t interested in doing that. It needed to end in a way that wasn’t harsh.”

Therefore, ending was supposed to be an open ending that makes the audience wonder whether the events actually happened. In which, for me, they succeeded.

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    Yeah, ambiguous endings are all the rage now (and have been for some time). Some might say it's just the screenwriter or director being lazy or affraid of losing audience - after all, ambiguous endings are so deep and arty, right? :D – Luaan Oct 13 '14 at 11:19
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    I don't this particular ambiguous ending is lazy, it adds to the whole story. If an ending makes you think about the story it's a good and clever ending. Furthermore, it allows discussion of the whole concept of this movie. I watched the movie and started liking it more and more over time, normally it's the other way around. – invalid_id Oct 13 '14 at 11:24
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    It depends. Personally, I'm usually disgusted with this nowadays, exactly because of its overuse. It only really works in moderation, and when cleverly constructed. Most importantly, it only really works when your whole story is as consistent as possible - and EoT fails this test. Which leads to WMG hypotheses, which turns this from "fill in the blanks" to "doesn't make sense". I suspect this is why storytellers usually avoided ambiguity even though it keeps the talk going - it's far too easy for someone to interpret you completely wrong and cause a genocide or something :D – Luaan Oct 13 '14 at 11:28
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    And in line with this, I think that art should be a form of communication, as well as entertainment. So if you can't get your message across clearly, you failed the communication part. Again, this isn't a problem of an open ending (all endings are open to an extent) - just an ambiguous one. The hard kind of ending is where you don't tell stuff outright, but still leave place for as few interpretations as you can. Anti-communist authors in (formerly) communist countries made this into an art form, and the same worked in other more or less oppressive governments for hiding messages in your work. – Luaan Oct 13 '14 at 11:32
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    They could have been more specific indeed. But well, it's Hollywood so people expect happy endings. – invalid_id Oct 14 '14 at 5:40
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After Cage became an Alpha and entered the nervous system of the Omega, could it be the Omega that revives the Human-Alpha and not himself, to lure him in a trap by sending him visions ?

Carter said that Cage had the power, but I'm not sure of this. He never seemed to control it and I know it doesn't mean he didn't have it but maybe the Omega still had the power and wanted to make him believe he had it to kill Cage in a trap. Besides, when the Squad J is in the plane to Paris, Griff said that Cage told them not to kill an Alpha because the Omega would replay the day and all would be lost. Wasn't Cage supposed to have stolen the power from the Omega ? meaning that it couldn't still have this power. If he never had and controlled it, why the Omega didn't just replay the day on its own, like it did each time the UDF won a battle ? I'm not sure it needs the death of an Alpha to reboot, because it would mean that humans have killed Alphas in almost every battle lost by Humanity and that the Omega would have replay all these days to win. It seems very incoherent to me. Or I really don't understand a single thing in this.

Anyway, I think Cage never had the power. After many deaths and a good knowledge of his enemies given by the Omega (which was replaying the day all over), Cage was now trained and capable to survive long enough. It let him reach the point it wanted (for Cage, the dam, for Rita, Verdun) and made him believe it was there to kill him slowly.

For Rita, it was slightly different as the Omega wanted the Humans to win the battle but probably didn't expect her to kill an Alpha and enter its nervous system. Then it pulled her to a place around Verdun with false visions where Alphas could kill her. The Omega sort of trained her to win the Battle of Verdun and then to come in the trap but she finally lost her ability during the fight and was no more a threat to it. Then its plan continue with the Operation Downfall.

In the end, the Omega is dead, and can't revive by time travelling since its blood melt with Cage's like did the blood of the first Alpha... which never reappeared on the beach. How to explain the final time loop ? it could possibly just be the deep and unconscious willing of Cage with his new power. Anyway, the Mimics and the Alphas are already dead before the Operation Downfall since the Omega is no more. Rita is alive and Cage will tell her in details how the Squad J and her helped him to kill the Omega. The happy ending is not so bad.

  • Nice perspective! – Nav Aug 2 '15 at 13:48
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I don't think the Omega was intelligent. Instead, I simply think of it as a machine. The Alpha's are the one controlling it, as long as they hold the key. It would make sense if the Omega had created some time region that got reset when it was killed - by why would that reset only a few days back, instead of to the beginning of the invasion? Did it create a save point after Verdun? :D

And of course, why would this reset result in a world where the Mimics are all dead? IMO it would make a lot more sense if the Mimics were still there to fight, just without their major advantage - or maybe even flee back home, having lost their strongest weapon.

In the end, this was probably added to the movie just to make the ending "good" for western audiences. If this was a Japanese movie, it'd probably end with everyone dying, but ultimately achieving their goal. It's just that noble sacrifices aren't really what european-descent cultures really appreciate all that much, when it still leaves the hero and all of those he loved dead :D

Note that in the story the movie is based on,

the final reset doesn't happen, and Cage (Keiji Kiriya) kills Rita in the end.

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    Well the big question is whether it is a happy end after all. It may seem now that the Mimics have "no resistance" but we've only seen Cage before his talk with the general. Possibly this is another loop initiated by the Omega after its defeat. Which would make the whole situation really hopeless and thus an unhappy ending, unlike the book which has a happy ending for the whole world (right?). I don't get how the Alpha's control the Omega, then why is there just one Omega then (is there?)? – invalid_id Oct 13 '14 at 9:51
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    @invalid_id Wild speculation, of course, but I'd expect that having more Omegas on the same theatre wouldn't work. Maybe they could bring a new one to action after the first one was killed, thus making this a minor victory rather than the final solution, though. Also, I'm assuming that these are not the only Mimics in the universe, or even in our galaxy - each of the invasion armies would presumably have their own Omega. The game Achron might interest you in that respect - it's somewhat similar to EoT except that it deals with outright time travel, rather than just "resets when you fail". – Luaan Oct 13 '14 at 10:26
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    thanks for the suggestion. It is stated in the movie that the Mimics came via the meteor in Russia and infected the earth. So I guess it's like a virus that conusmes a planet and then leaves for another one if they are done. In that sense multiple Omega's shouldn't be a problem, but the "delivery" is. The Omega is said (in the movie) to be like a brain that controls the Alpha's and the others. I think I really missed a hint in the movie to understand the ending correctly. – invalid_id Oct 13 '14 at 10:43
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    @invalid_id Well, I think the ending was meant to imply that everyone lived happily ever after. It doesn't really work that way when you take the whole movie together, but that is rarely so. And of course, we hear that the Omega is in control from a character in the movie, so it isn't necessarily true (note how Rita has been outsmarted by the Mimics previously) - not that there is any evidence to the contrary that I can see. The invasion seemed to be focused around the Omega, whether as a leader or a tool. Who knows, maybe the humans already killed a few Omegas and this one was the last? – Luaan Oct 13 '14 at 10:52
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    I found a useful interview that explains that the ending was supposed to be this vague, but open, opposed to an alternative ending, which would have been a darker and equally mind-bending (but also open) ending. – invalid_id Oct 13 '14 at 11:04

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