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The Ending Of Gemini Man Explained

Directed by the legendary Ang Lee, Gemini Man is a sci-fi action thriller about one of the world's greatest assassins (Will Smith) who's about to face his greatest challenge yet: a young version of himself (also Will Smith). There are a lot of reasons to want to dig into this film, from the starpower of two Will Smiths to Ang Lee's eye for action visuals to, of course, the hook at the heart of the story. 

Gemini Man's intriguing premise — a man fighting a younger, sharper version of himself — isn't necessarily new in science fiction (we're looking at you, Looper), but this film presents a number of opportunities to look at a familiar story in ways that other movies haven't, particularly as it barrels toward its action-packed ending. Now that the film is out in the world, we're here to talk about the many implications of the world Gemini Man builds and what's left for the people left standing. This is the ending of Gemini Man, explained.


Henry's future after Gemini Man

Even before he realizes that he's unwittingly been roped into a massive conspiracy involving a secret cloning program and a clone of himself growing up right under his nose, Henry Brogan (Smith) is tired. He feels himself slowing down, losing his touch, and more importantly, he's beginning to struggle with his job a little more. Killing people is no longer a satisfying bit of service to his country. It's something he struggles to live with. 

The journey of Gemini Man is Henry's journey to quite literally contend with himself and his place in the world, and he comes out the other side of it feeling a little better about himself. His defeat of Clay Varris (Clive Owen) allows him to sleep a little easier at night, he admits he can finally look in a mirror, and in Junior (Smith), he's found a surrogate son who just happens to share his exact DNA profile. Henry Brogan's killer instinct might not go away overnight, and neither will his guilt or any traces of post-traumatic stress, but he has people in his life who care about him at last, and that's a good start.

Junior's journey

We get less character development on the side of "Junior," Henry Brogan's young clone who was adopted as Clay Varris' son, but we know enough to understand that he's got a tough road ahead of him. Junior was created to be the ultimate killer, a man with all of Brogan's natural skills and athleticism but none of the emotional issues he grew up with. In talking with Junior, Henry revealed that Clay's attempts at taking all of those issues away from Junior didn't work. The young clone still struggles with issues of inadequacy, with nightmares, and with struggling to find joy anywhere besides on the other side of a gun.

By the end of the film, Junior — renamed Jackson Brogan at his request — has found some degree of actual, tangible joy in his life, and most of it comes in the form of choice. He gets to do what he wants, and what he wants is to go to college, make friends, and have a life as a human being who's part of a society, not just a weapon aimed at a target. He seems genuinely happy at the end of the film, but this isn't the end of his struggles. He's dealing with the weight of psychological trauma sustained throughout his relationship with his adoptive father, but thankfully, he's got people in his corner to help him out.

What's next for Danny at the end of Gemini Man?

From the moment we meet her in the film, Danny Zakarweski (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) proves to be a resourceful and sharp Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) operative. Over the course of Gemini Man, she keeps proving that she's always cool under pressure, despite being propelled into one of the most improbable situations of her career. Virtually overnight, she goes from surveilling Henry in a sleepy seaside community to hopping around the globe trying to avoid bullets, and that's before the issue of clones comes into play. 

By the end of the film, Danny and Henry are close friends, and Danny has even become at least somewhat close to Jackson Brogan, Henry's young clone. More than that, though, she reveals that she's been promoted within the DIA, a likely result of the restructuring that had to take place once the Gemini cloning project was brought to light and ultimately dismantled. That puts Danny in a position to not just help Henry and Jackson as they try to get on with their lives, but to hopefully prevent anyone from meddling in Jackson's future as he tries to simply enjoy his 20s, free from the life of an assassin.

What happened to Baron's estate?

Though their relationship forms the core of the film, Henry and Danny aren't the only operatives chasing down the Gemini conspiracy. They have quite a bit of help from Baron (Benedict Wong), Henry's old Marine buddy who turned down the opportunity to be a part of Gemini, moved to Colombia, and lived peacefully until Henry came knocking in search of someone to hide him. Throughout the film, Baron is loyal, resourceful, and actually seems to enjoy being back in the game again ... until Varris and his soldiers blow up the van he was riding in. 

At the end of the film, Henry notes that he's had to spend some time taking care of Baron's estate after his death, which means Baron had no family to fall back on and therefore left, if not everything, then a lot of things to Henry. Does that carry any real significance for the future, other than Henry possibly owning a place in Cartagena now? The film doesn't elaborate, but the mere mention of the estate of somebody like Baron means that Henry probably got his hands on some interesting assets, or at least a few really good mementos.

Gemini's future

At one point in the film, Henry and Baron are talking about their history with Clay Varris, the shady leader of the private paramilitary company known as Gemini. They both recount how he asked them to join up with his new venture and how they both declined. Baron, in fact, said no and then moved to a different continent, putting him at least somewhat out of Varris' reach. Henry stayed in America, and later found out that Varris had used his blood to create a perfect supersoldier clone. 

As the film unfolds, we learn more and more about the dark dealings of Gemini, including the last-minute revelation that Varris created at least one more clone of Henry and managed to edit out his sense of pain, making him an even deadlier fighter. By the time the film is over, Henry's old friend, Del (Ralph Brown), assures him that the Gemini lab has been shuttered, hopefully putting an end to Varris' secretive dealings. Any fan of spy movies knows that it can't possibly be that simple, though. What else was Varris hiding? What other secret projects did Gemini have up its sleeve? The film leaves us hanging, but there has to be something.

The potential for more clones

Late in the film, just as it seems Henry, Danny, and Junior have beaten back the Gemini onslaught, Varris reveals a secret weapon. He's made another, younger clone of Henry, and this one has no pain receptors, even greater fighting abilities, and no apparent sense of mercy or surrender. It takes all of our heroes' combined strength to kill this second clone, who dies without a word or even an indication that he's failed. He simply ceases to exist. 

In the fallout of this fight, as they're questioning Varris about it, Junior is compelled to ask how many more clones like him might be out there. Varris doesn't exactly answer the question. He merely insists that Junior is unique because Junior is Varris' son, and he is loved. Later, when the dust settles, Del assures Henry that there are no other clones left. 

If Del is providing that assurance, it means the DIA has conducted some kind of search for additional Gemini assets, but how can we be sure that's true? It's entirely possible the DIA is lying and keeping assets for a rainy day, and it's also possible that Varris had more clones somewhere in deep cover, waiting to be activated.

The future of the DIA

In the world of Gemini Man, Henry Brogan's espionage dealings are carried out through the Defense Intelligence Agency. The DIA is the central hub of Henry Brogan's life, and as we meet him, he's preparing to retire after decades of service. Then it becomes clear that within the DIA, superior officers like Janet Lassiter (Linda Emond) have begun working closely with Clay Varris on a cover-up of the Gemini cloning project. Henry Brogan was sent to kill one of the top scientists tied to the project, then Lassiter's operatives were supposed to kill Brogan to cover up any loose ends. 

That botched cover-up operation is what sets the entire plot of the film in motion. By the time it's over, Del assures Henry that Lassiter will be buried for her role in it, and we learn that Danny has been promoted within the agency, presumably so she can help prevent future incidents like this one from happening. Is that the full extent of the DIA fallout, though? It's doubtful. Somewhere within the halls of Congress, someone is talking about hearings, and it's possible that Lassiter won't be the only one who goes down.

About that Yemen operation

Early in the film, we get a glimpse of the Gemini home base, which includes a full-scale mockup of a city street designed for combat training. It's in the midst of this training that Varris reveals he's about to send his heavily armored, cutting-edge troops into Yemen. Later, when the second Brogan clone is revealed, Varris explains that he was set to be part of the Yemen operation, too, and that now that he's been killed, someone with a family will have to go in his place. 

So ... what's going on in Yemen? The film never tells us anything about the exact parameters of that operation. We only know that Gemini was sending men to participate in what was supposed to be a very important rollout for Varris and his company, and Varris is still talking about sending men over there even after his assault force is killed by Henry and Junior. Are there more Gemini troops to send? Will the U.S. government still allow it to happen? We don't know, but it's an indication of just how deep Varris was embedded.

The evolution of cloning in the world of Gemini Man

When Henry Brogan first encounters Junior, Danny becomes briefly convinced that the young assassin must be Henry's son that he didn't know he fathered. Later, after a little DNA testing, it becomes clear that he's a clone, and then the film elaborates on Junior's background to tell us that he wasn't just some lab-grown thing. Junior was cloned from a sample of Henry's blood more than two decades earlier, and he was raised from infancy by Clay Varris. At some point in the intervening years, Varris took that endeavor a step further and cloned Henry again, this time drafting a top scientist to edit out things like pain sensitivity from the second clone's genetic code. 

So, Gemini Man posits a world in which a rich paramilitary contractor has had viable cloning technology in his hands for more than 20 years, and in that time, he's found a way to breed supersoldiers that don't feel pain. What else has he figured out? How many other scientists has he spoken to, and perhaps most importantly, who else has access to this technology? Now that Varris is dead, is someone else going to finish what he started? If there's a sequel to Gemini Man, that seems like fertile ground to explore.