Arthelais In ‘Rebel Moon’ Part 1 Explained: Why Is Kora Called “The Child Of War”?

Zack Snyder’s latest sci-fi action film hits home for all the right reasons, especially because it reminds us of a brilliant masterpiece that we have come to love. Yes! I’m talking about Akira Kurosawa’s Seven Samurai. Based on a similar premise but with space travel in the mix, the film follows Kora, an ordinary farmer with a stained past who travels across different worlds seeking warriors to protect her village from the Motherworld’s wrath.

Rebel Moon introduced Kora (or Arthelais) as an ordinary farmer who lived in a distant village named Veldt, away from the ravages of war. Even though the village wasn’t that prosperous, their leader, Sindri, made sure that everyone under his leadership was well-fed and taken care of. Before Kora was thrust into the war again, her daily routine involved cooking fresh meat and growing potatoes. She had feelings for Gunnar, another one of the villagers who oversaw the harvest, which involved making sure the seeds were planted in time, among other things. Unlike many, Kora had no intention to get married and start a family, even though she had feelings for Gunnar. Kora had always seen herself as a child of war, one who wasn’t fit to truly love or be loved. The very idea of love and family was beaten out of her, Kora had stated on multiple occasions.

Spoilers Ahead


Why Did Kora Leave The Village?

As discussed earlier, Arthelais was a child of war, born when Regent Balisarius and his armada were ravaging planets for harvest and suppressing the so-called rebellion that took the life of his beloved king. Balisarius had put his trust in Atticus Noble, a commander with a penchant for violence and bloodshed, and ordered him to find and murder all the remaining rebels scattered throughout the galaxy, including the Bloodaxes, Devra, and Darrian.

At the village, Arthelais changed her name to Kora and lived a peaceful life away from the violence and bloodshed that once defined her, but it was short-lived, as Atticus and his men arrived at the village in a massive ship called “The King’s Gaze” and struck fear in the hearts of the people. If you haven’t picked up on it yet, Atticus was traversing planets and galaxies on the Regent’s orders to suffocate the last of the revolution, mainly Devra and Darrian Bloodaxe, who had a high bounty on their heads. Since Atticus’ soldiers were always at war, he had arrived in the village to ask for surplus to feed his soldiers. Sindri knew what Atticus was capable of and told them he had no surplus to offer, as even their people were starving. This angered Atticus, and he murdered Sindri in front of the villagers and ordered Gunnar to produce 100,000 bushels in 10 weeks. Kora knew fighting the army wouldn’t yield any result and thus decided to leave the village in the middle of the night, but she was roped in again, trying to save a girl’s dignity from Atticus’ savage soldiers. Kora then left the village with Gunnar to find outlaws and insurgents to save her village.


Arthelais (or Kora) wasn’t related to Balisarius by blood but by circumstances. When Arthelais was in her formative years, Balisarius, on the king’s orders, invaded her village to plunder and murder innocents just so the king could establish his dominance and send a message to the galaxy. Balisarius murdered Arthelais’s family but spared her and took Arthelais with him to train her to become a killing machine who knows nothing but the scent of blood. Balisarius adopted Arthelais, raised her, and trained her in military warfare and tactics.

As the years passed, Arthelais transitioned into a cold-blooded soldier who could easily fend off dozens of armed combatants. She fought under the banner of the same murderous dictators who killed her family and slaughtered millions who posed a threat to the empire. This was why Arthelais knew that her village would be destroyed, as Balisarius’s men didn’t know how to take hostages and show mercy. Arthelais was also appointed as Princess Issa’s bodyguard, which was a high honor for anyone who served in the army of the Motherworld. The first installment didn’t really shine a light on Princess Issa, but we know that she was named after a goddess, and as per the rumors, Issa had the ability to give life or heal others. In one instance, Arthelais saw Issa resurrecting a bird that had died.


What Would Happen To Kora?

As seen in the film, Kora visited multiple worlds and enlisted many warriors to join her cause to save her village from Atticus’ forces. This included Nemesis, the legendary swordswoman, who was wanted dead or alive for killing much of the top brass of the Motherworld; Prince Tarak, a man enslaved after his planet’s annihilation; General Titus, who rebelled and fought against his own king; and also Darrin Bloodaxe, the man who was keeping the rebellion alive. Unfortunately, there was a traitor in their midst, and they were betrayed by Kai, the bounty hunter, who had sold them out to Atticus. However, thanks to Gunnar and the others, Kora managed to defeat Atticus and his men. Once Atticus was out of the picture, Kora returned to the village with her newfound friends and warriors. As the movie draws to a close, we see Atticus meeting Balisarius, who gives him one final chance to crush the rebellion and capture Kora alive so Balisarius can make an example out of her. Balisarius also threatened Atticus that, should he fail, it would be his head on the spike.

The first installment rarely told us anything about Kora, except for her being the adopted daughter of Balisarius and a skilled Motherworld soldier. What we really needed was to know why Kora left the army at the point when she had everything: power, influence, recognition, and respect. We don’t know how she arrived in the village, but we were told that Hagen had found her in the wreckage of the ship. Thus, it was possible that Kora left after she realized that she had become the very thing she sought to destroy. Of course, this didn’t sit well for Balisarius, as he had big plans for her. Maybe he wanted Kora to take his place, but when Kora eloped, Balisarius’s plans ceased to exist. In addition, we were told that the king and his family were killed by an unknown assassin, so there’s also a chance that Kora would see a much stronger threat than her father. As for her village, Atticus would surely send his best men, and even himself, to make sure that the village is turned to dust and Kora is captured.


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Rishabh Shandilya
Rishabh Shandilya
Rishabh considers himself a superhero who is always at work trying to save the world from boredom. In his leisure time, he loves to watch more movies and play video games and tries to write about them to entertain his readers further. Rishabh likes to call himself a dedicated fan of Haruki Murakami, whose books are an escape from his real being.

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