The new horror movie The Night House is an unsettling blend of ghost story and psychological terror, and heres what its ending really means.
The new horror movie The Night House is an unsettling blend of ghost story and psychological terror — the kind of film that leaves audiences wondering what the ending really means. There are many flavors of horror movies that are designed to please different segments of the quite vast horror fanbase. When it comes to scare factors though, there tend to be two basic types. The first, which is often what Hollywood studios go with, mostly relies on jump scares to startle the audience and keep them on their toes. The second is when a horror movie takes a more cerebral approach, building its scares up slowly, and going for creeping out the viewer over startling them.
The Night House, helmed by future Hellraiser reboot director David Bruckner, is definitely much more in line with that second variety. While some jumps are featured here and there — and are usually effective in their own right — most of The Night House is designed to unsettle and disturb. In some ways, its a fairly old school ghost story during its first act, but as more and more secrets are revealed, things take a sharp left turn into the occult and the potentially horrifying reality of what happens after death.
Befitting its more psychological horror bent, The Night Houses story, and especially its ending, are open to multiple interpretations. Theres a more literal way of looking at things, in which one takes the story at close to face value, and more symbolic interpretations of what the plot and characters are meant to convey. Either way one looks at it, the critically acclaimed The Night House hides many secrets.
What Happens In The Night Houses Ending
The Night House begins shortly after Owen (Evan Jonigkeit) has suddenly committed suicide, with his wife Beth (Rebecca Hall) trying to pick up the pieces of her life as best she can. As the movie goes on, its revealed that Owen had a double life that involved him wooing and murdering women who resemble Beth in a house across the lake thats a mirrored version of their home. However, it turns out he did this due to a mysterious creature dubbed Nothing, who Rebecca encountered when she briefly died after an accident as a teenager. She didnt remember there being anything on the other side — but she was wrong.
Nothing tried to push Owen into murdering Beth, sending her back to the other side, but he refused, killing the other women in an attempt to trick the creature. This serial killer strategy eventually stopped working, so Owen killed himself instead. The Night House ends with Nothing taking Beth out on the lake in their small boat to try and get her to replicate Owens suicide. She almost gives in, but eventually puts the gun down, choosing to live on. The movie then goes to credits, leaving it ambiguous as to whether Beth has truly escaped Nothing, or if the entity will try to claim her again in the future.
The Night House Explores The Horrors Of Grief
While the Nothing proves to be a scary and formidable antagonist when one looks at the story of The Night House literally, theres a reality-based monster that truly forms the center of the narrative. Few things are certain in life, but one of them is that it will one day come to an end. Everyone and everything will one day die, and dealing with the death of a friend or loved one can be the hardest thing most people ever have to do. Thats even more true when someone loves their spouse, who many see as their other half, their best friend, the person meant to grow old alongside them and co-navigate their journey through life.