Men In Black: International’s Ending Explained
WARNING: Spoilers for MIB: International.
Here is what happened at the end of Men in Black: International and what it means for the future of the franchise. The Men in Black franchise originally started in 1997, pairing Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones up for the sci-fi/comedy series. After three successful films, the franchise was put on ice for a few years. Sony finally found a way to bring it back with this sequel/reboot a few years back.
MIB: International is directed by F. Gary Gray and reunites Thor: Ragnarok stars Chris Hemsworth and Tessa Thompson in the leading roles. Thompson plays Agent M, who finds the secret organization after almost 20 years of searching for their existence. She is sent to London by Agent O (Emma Thompson) as she fears there is something wrong with the London branch of the organization. Once she arrives, Agent M pairs herself up with Agent H - played by Hemsworth - to learn the ropes and quickly finds herself entrenched in a possible cover-up and possession of the galaxy's most dangerous weapon.
The weapon draws the attention of several different alien parties and arms dealers, such as Rebecca Ferguson's Riza. When Agent M and Agent H look to be outnumbered, the rest of the Men in Black team arrive to save the day... or so they thought. The victory doesn't sit right with the partners and Agent C (Rafe Spall), which is when all three of them discover who the real villain of Men in Black: International is.
Liam Neeson's High T Is Men In Black: International's Villain
For the majority of the film, High T (Liam Neeson) is the leader of the London branch of the Men in Black, and appears to be a good one at that. He is the one who helped train H back in the day, but neither of them was ever the same after one world saving mission in Paris in 2016. They were believed to have defeated an alien race known as Hive, but the infectious beings had other plans. One Hive alien made it through the portal at the top of the Eiffel Tower and took over High T's body. He then used a neuralyzer to wipe H's memory.
For the next few years, "High T" continues to keep up the facade and waits to bring more of his race to Earth. His true villainous plan only is set into motion when he gains possession of the powerful weapon, knowing that it was the one thing that could stop their invasion. He goes back to Paris to open the portal so more of the Hive can arrive. But, when M regains possession of the superweapon, she uses the full strength of it to wipe out the Hive and High T.
The evil turn for Neeson could help make sense of why he is not featured that much in the Men in Black: International trailers. Hemsworth and Thompson are the stars, but Neeson is still a big name and a draw, so Sony not taking advantage of this may have been to try and preserve this twist as best as they could. That said, it is also possible that the studio pulled back on Neeson's presence in the marketing after the controversy Neeson was involved in during the Cold Pursuit press tour.
Agent H & M Are Split Up At The End Of Men In Black: International
With the Hive invasion stopped and High T dead, the last few minutes of MIB: International then splits up Agents H and M. After only being sent to London on a probationary period, Agent O makes M an official agent with her own neuralyzer. She then reassigns M to New York on a permanent basis, splitting up the effective pairing of M and H. This does come with a promotion for H though, as he is named the probationary head of the London branch after support from the top brass of the organization and London's other top agent, Agent C.
Before H takes his new position and M returns home, she hijacks his car and offers him a ride back to London. M will also take a few days before going back to New York after a successful, world-saving mission. With the two on the verge of being separated though, M does decide to leave H with a special, wise-cracking alien sidekick, Pawny (Kumail Nanjiani).
What's Next For Men In Black?
With Agents H and M split apart, it opens up a potential sequel to MIB: International to go in several different directions. Assuming it doesn't pick up in the days straight after, a Men in Black 5 would likely see H try to become the permanent head of the London branch while M tries to prove herself as an agent stateside. The two could be reunited on US soil to give them a change of scenery or possibly meet at another MIB headquarters at a different part of the world.
Unlike past installments of the franchise though, MIB: International doesn't tease another threat that is on the horizon. Men in Black 1 & 2 ended on jokes about how our reality is just one small part of a larger universe and Men in Black 3 momentarily teased audiences with a meteorite hitting Earth. There is no such sequel setup here, leaving the world of this franchise open to do whatever it wants in the future.
The only problem with the future of the franchise is that there may not be one. The box office projections for Men in Black: International are not promising, even though Sony did their part to turn a profit by giving this the lowest budget of the franchise. Somewhat fittingly, it will need strong play internationally to recoup what is expected to be a lackluster performance stateside. It could still get there and give the franchise another chance to get Hemsworth and Thompson back together, while the film coming in under what Sony hoped for could eventually spring another twist in Men in Black's future. Maybe that will be what gets the MIB 23 movie back into consideration to be made, or Sony could come back and try to get Will Smith back involved with the next installment.