Aquaman: A small clue. (300 words)
As we were watching Aquaman together, a friend of mine firmly stated very early in the film: “His mother isn’t dead.” I could see where she was coming from but was far from being as convinced of the idea as she was. 1 hour and 45 minutes later Atlanna reappears. Hurrey, she’s alive !
So, I thought it was a very good example of a last minute piece of information that changes everything, number 15 of my clues of a subtext.
Until her reappearance, every single of Arthur’s action is influenced by the belief that his mother was executed by Atlantians for the crime of having given birth to him, the bastard child. That is a very strong motive to oppose the ruler of Atlantis.
Orm’s actions too are necessarily influenced by the ruthlessness that his father showed towards his mother for her betrayal (or is it not his father who condemned her ? I can’t remember).
And surprise surprise, at the end of the day, she’s perfectly fine and can go back to the beloved sucker who waited for her his whole monotonous life and pretend that she didn’t just used him.
…because obviously the whole story is about a woman having a child with a man of a different "ethnic group" this for political purposes.
But my point here isn’t to dwell upon the depth of the plot. I just wanted to point at this simple fact: Both Orm and Arthur believe Atlanna to be dead and are necessarily driven and alienated by their grief when truly, she’s not.
We are exactly in front of an element that asks the audience to go back and rethink everything that happens from that point of view. How this belief influenced Arthur and Orm, how this changes everything and how she might never have been in danger in the first place, and all of this is just politics and how Arthur is just a tool.
Would anything have taken place if both sons had known their mother to be alive from the start ?