Mark Wahlberg’s action thriller, Infinite is a narrative centred around “afterlives” and “reincarnations.” The film is directed by Antoine Fuqua, based on 2009’s novel The Reincarnationist Papers, written by Eric Maikranz.
Through the film, Mark is trying to re-establish his presence as an action figure. The film showcases some of the most fluid car sequences, vrooming on the roads of Mexico. Apart from smooth action sequences, the film also ponders upon a rebirth philosophy where the antagonist perceives it as a curse. At the same time, for a protagonist, it’s a chance to redeem the mistakes. Let’s get curious.
Who were Infinites?
Certain individuals in the film were gifted with a perfect memory of their past lives. They called themselves the Infinites. Among these special individuals, there were two separate groups often labeled as, Believers and Nihilists.
Believers dedicated their past knowledge, their reincarnated memory, for human evolution, protection, and growth. But, on the other hand, Nihilists saw this memory loop as a curse and wanted to end it forever. But to escape from rebirth, they had to destroy every living being on the planet. Thus, their intention underlines their struggle.
What do Nihilists want?
In Infinite, the leader of the Nihilist group, Bathurst (Chiwetel Ejiofor), was tired of the constant loop of reincarnation. In one scene, he expressed his grief that while some infinites attain memory recall at puberty, Bathurst got cursed to get them back in the womb. Thus, he too had to live with all those geniuses, trapped in a baby’s body, unable to move and use the physical mechanics. The scenario acted as a prison for his evolved mind, and he wanted to break the chain off.
In his past life, with the help of some scientist, Bathurst designed a DNA bomb, referred to as “the Egg,” in the film. The weapon was designed to destroy all living beings by destroying their genes and creating a mass extinction.
The film’s opening sequence followed Treadway, who stole the “egg” from Bathurst and hid it away. In the current timeline, Treadway was reborn as Evan McCauley (Mark Wahlberg) and was tasked to find the missing bomb, hidden by his former self.
Where was the Egg hidden?
Nora Brightman (Sophie Cookson), one of the Believers in the current timeline, informed Evan that most infinites get their memory back by the age they hit puberty. But with Evan, a metal plate in his head was obstructing the brain waves. As a result, he might not have got his memory back.
Evan knew where the Egg was hidden, and thus they pushed him to the edge of death to create an artificial flashback of his memory. Later he told them that Egg was hidden inside his former’s body, i.e., the body of Treadway, preserved in Believers hiding hub.
During his childhood, Evan constantly heard the word “Look inside,” which was his memory suggesting to him the location of the Egg. Evan thought he was Schizophrenic, but he was a believer who had lived many past lives.
What was Bathurst’s Dethroner?
Killing an Infinite would only destroy their body. Their soul again finds its way to a newborn, and thus, their existence would be brought up again. In simple words, an infinite memory-recalling ability was linked to their soul.
Bathurst designed a special weapon, loaded with electronic bullets that would capture his soul into a digital chip when shot on an infinite’s head. The soul gets stuck on a disk and thus breaks the cycle. With the help of this weapon, Bathurst had killed some 200 believers and vaulted their souls in his private study room.
‘Infinite’ Ending Explained – How did Evan diffuse “the Egg?”
In a climax aerial fight, Evan pulled out the Egg from a catalyst bomb designed by Bathurst. He disarmed the bomb and hid the Egg inside his jacket before drowning in the river. Thus the Egg went into the ocean along with his body.
Before falling into the ocean, Evan shot Bathurst on his head, thereby transferring his soul into the bullet. The bullet and the body both drowned in the water. Hence, his existence was lost forever. But fortunately, Bathurst got saved from an infinite loop and eternal pain. He could have shot himself initially with his Dethroner and helped the makers save bucks on making the film (kidding).
During the climax sequence, when Bathurst used Dethroner on Evan, it didn’t affect him. The reason being, there was a metal plate fixed on Evan’s head. He got it fixated after attaining severe injuries to his brain in a car crash. Thus, an injury saved his life (quite literally). Evan was reborn.
The last blast depicted Nora sitting inside Bathurst’s study room with digital chips of the fallen believers triggered with a bomb. Then, finally, she exploded herself, thereby releasing the souls of the infinites.
Nora and her love, Abel, got a rebirth. They met again at Angkor Wat, the temple they called “the beginning.” Evan was born again in Jakarta, Indonesia. A young Treadway/ Evan was seen sword fighting in an arena. Artisan was looking upon him from a distance. A few minutes later, Artisan handed Treadway his sword that brought back his memories. The scene opens the door for a possible sequel if the makers decide to proceed with another installment.
Treadway/Evan exhibited an invisible force (noticeable twice, once in a previous life during the car jump scene and again during the aircraft sequence). Its significance or origin was not summarized in the film. It leaves the viewers in confusion. It might get explored further in the sequel. As from my perspective, frequent rebirth gave him specific god-like power that stabilizes energy around him.
Infinite is a 2021 science fiction thriller film directed by Antoine Fuqua and distributed by Paramount+.