|Directed by||:||Alex Garland||Produced by||:||Andrew Macdonald||Screenplay by||:||Alex Garland||Based on||:||Annihilation by Jeff VanderMeer||Starring||:||Natalie Portman Jennifer, Jason Leigh, Gina Rodriguez, Tessa Thompson||Cinematography||:||Rob Hardy||Production company||:||Skydance Media DNA Films|
Annihilation is a 2018 science fiction horror film written and directed by Alex Garland, based on the novel of the same name by Jeff VanderMeer. The film stars Natalie Portman, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Gina Rodriguez, Tessa Thompson, Tuva Novotny, and Oscar Isaac, and follows a group of military scientists who enter "The Shimmer," a mysterious quarantined zone that is full of mutating landscapes and creatures.
The film was released in the United States by Paramount Pictures on February 23, 2018, and is scheduled to be released in other markets on March 12, 2018 by Netflix. The film received largely positive reviews from critics, with praise for its visuals, performances, direction, and thought-provoking story.
Annihilation Full Movie Plot
Lena, a professor of cellular biology, undergoes quarantined debriefing. Lomax, her debriefer, questions her about her experiences during what they believe to be a period of months when Lena was on an expedition—but Lena reports that the expedition took a much shorter time. Lena appears to be the only survivor.
Previously, Lena's husband, Kane, returned without warning to their home after being missing on a military mission for nearly a year. He remembered nothing about the mission or his return, and immediately became very ill. A government security force intercepts and takes custody of Lena and Kane on the way to the hospital. The security force takes the two to a research compound on the edge of an anomalous region of land, which the compound's psychologist Dr. Ventress calls "Area X" or "the shimmer", and Kane falls into a coma. Dr. Ventress reveals that Kane was part of a team that ventured into Area X, but that none of the many teams that have entered the area have returned. Lena decides to join a new team to penetrate Area X in hopes of finding a way to heal her husband.
The other members of the team are Josie, a physicist, Anya, a paramedic, and Cass, a surveyor and geologist. The expedition immediately encounters inexplicable challenges. Guidance technology fails, the five women experience a period of missing time, and a strange alligator attacks Josie as the group gathers biological samples. Lena, who was a soldier before she became a biologist, shoots the alligator, and determines that its physiology incorporates traits from a variety of animals. Other forms of life in the Area X ecosystem are likewise combined. At an abandoned military base, the team discovers evidence of Kane's expedition. Video on a memory card shows Kane cutting open a living expedition member to reveal that his guts are motile. That night, the base's perimeter fence is torn open as Dr. Ventress and Lena stand guard. A mutated bear appears and drags Cass off, an event unseen by Josie and Anya.
As the team continues toward a lighthouse at the center of Area X, Lena finds Cass' body and other hybrid plants and animals. The group discovers a town filled with humanoid-shaped plants, and Josie hypothesizes that the Area X is acting as a genetic prism, distorting and refracting the DNA of the organisms living within. The team members realize that they are slowly mutating as well. That night, a paranoid Anya attacks and restrains Lena, Josie, and Dr. Ventress. She has discovered that Kane was Lena's husband, and she accuses the group of killing Cass. As Anya threatens the group, they suddenly hear Cass screaming, and Anya runs outside to find her. A mutant bear enters the house; it has incorporated DNA from Sheppard into its own genome, and mimicked her death screams as a lure. The bear kills Anya before Josie kills it.
Dr. Ventress leaves the group to go to the lighthouse alone. Josie tells Lena she neither wants to journey further nor fight the force behind Area X, begins to sprout leaves from her skin, and vanishes. Lena reaches the lighthouse, where she discovers a hole in the floor, an incinerated corpse, and a video camera. The footage in the camera shows Kane committing suicide with a white phosphorus grenade after urging an unseen person to find Lena. The other person steps out from behind the camera, revealing that it is Kane's own doppelgänger.
Lena descends into the hole. Dr. Ventress is in the chamber below; she tells Lena that the force that created Area X is extraterrestrial, and that it will spread to encompass the entire world in an act of "annihilation". Dr. Ventress transforms into a nebulous structure which takes a drop of blood from a cut on Lena's face and creates a humanoid entity that reflects Lena's every motion. After battling the entity, Lena sets off a grenade that lights it on fire. As it burns, it morphs into her own doppelgänger. The creature crawls back into the hole, torching the lighthouse.
Lena's debriefing concludes. She speculates that the effect in Area X was not destroying life within, but "making something new". Lomax confirms that Area X has disappeared. Lena reunites with "Kane", who has recovered rapidly with the disappearance of Area X. She asks him whether he is the real Kane, to which he replies, "I don't think so." He then asks her if she is the real Lena, to which she does not respond. The two embrace as their irises shimmer and shift in color.