‘Blood Quantum’ is a 2019 Canadian horror film written and directed by Jeff Barnaby. It is a zombie horror movie with a socio-political message as well. Read on to know its story and ending better. Spoilers Ahead!
Blood Quantum: Plot
The story is based in 1981, on the Red Crow Indian Reservation in Quebec, Canada. A fisherman named Gisigu (Stonehorse Lone Goeman) catches a few salmon and notices them moving even after being gutted. Not only the fish, but dead dogs also start to come back to life. This virus spreads among the people there and soon it results in a global pandemic. The sheriff of the town Traylor( Michael Greyeyes) receives pathetic reports of weird things happening around the town. People are found biting each other and leading to a wide spreading of the virus. Traylor plans on finding the details about this virus and also save his people from getting infected.
Blood Quantum: Detailed Analysis
Blood Quantum plot shows us the spread of the disease by the virus and consequently people turning into zombies. However, in spite of everyone getting bitten by the virus, not everyone turns into zombies. For instance, the sheriff and his son get affected by the spread of the virus. Still, even after six months, both Traylor and his son are alive and they did not turn into the zombie. How did it happen? Well, to answer this, we get a realization during the movie that every zombie we have seen so far has been a white person.
This throws light on the fact that indigenous people are somehow immune to turning into zombies. The movie ‘Blood Quantum’ does not give any scientific explanation for this unusual trade of events. However, it takes a dig at the ancient socio-cultural history of the native people and the white people. The current scenario recreates the time when white people attacked the native people and destroyed their native lands. The genocide of the indigenous and the irreversible damage done to their community by the white attackers. This justifies Lysol’s (Kiowa Gordon) agitation against the whites and occluding them from giving shelter.
On the other hand, Gisigu states this pandemic as nature’s way of undoing things. Humans have exploited nature and its resources for their selfish motives for many years now. The virus is destroying the population to gain back its balance. The turning of white people into zombies and feasting on others signifies the bloodthirsty society that has exploited the world.
Gisigu also states a harsh truth about why indigenous people are not affected by the virus, like white people. He simply states that nature is not particularly being kind to its native population. But, in fact, nature has forgotten them as native people, and hence they are not bothered by the virus. He makes this point as a metaphor with the harsh reality of the injustices the native people have undergone.
For many years they have been forgotten by their government, deprived of their native lands, and exploited of their rights. Thus, this shows no improvement in their condition howsoever. The movie also picks up on the incident when Quebec Provincial Police had confiscated the Indian fishermen. They had prohibited their fishing activity for the salmon in their waters.
Blood Quantum Law
In addition to that, the main factor of Blood Quantum is its law. The law states the ways to determine the indigenous heritage of a person. The percentage of native blood in them determines the policies that will affect them, for the better or the worse. This is analogous to the virus affecting the persons in the movie. Their amount of indigenous blood determines if they turn into a zombie or not when bitten by the virus. A white baby when takes birth turns out to be infected while a native baby is safe.
The whole fight between the whites and the natives is further highlighted by the refugee incident. Red Crow Reservation is the only safe place where survivors are kept isolated from the rest of the affected town. Lysol who is Traylor’s elder son firmly rejects the incoming of white people into the fortified place. Even if they are infected or not, his anger prevents him to help them. We can not really judge if his behavior is justified keeping in mind the past damage white people have caused to his ancestors.
The Ending Explained
Lilith turns into a zombie as she kept a secret that she has been bitten. Lysol however uses her to spread the outbreak inside the compound. Traylor was busy saving Joss and others who escape in the truck, but he loses his life there. On finding out Lysol causing havoc at the town church, Gisigu and Joseph arrive there to save people. Lysol kills Bumper and unleashes a zombie on Charlie who gets bitten by it.
In the final scenes of ‘Blood Quantum’, Gisigu and Joseph manage to wound Lysol. Zombies eat him up and he eventually dies. Gisigu decides to stay on his native land while Joss, Charlie, and Joseph leave on the boat. The final moments show him batteling against the zombies and getting bitten by them. However, we don’t see him die.
Also read: Tenet: Twisted Plot And Ending Explained.
On the same boat, Charlie gives birth to a baby. No one was sure about the baby’s immunity towards the virus. But Joss and Joseph are relieved when they find out the baby is immune. Looking at her baby for the last time, Charlie asks Joseph to kill her before she turns into a zombie.