Barbarian (2022) is a horror film written and directed by Zach Cregger. There is nothing better than a film that makes you think before and after it ends. Sometimes films can be so convoluted that they make your head spin or don’t make any sense. Thankfully “Barbarian” doesn’t fall into either of these categories, so as long as you know where to look for its story threads, it’s an enjoyable and enlightening watch.
Barbarian (2022) Plot Story Explanation
* * * Spoiler Alert – If you haven’t seen the movie yet, turn back now! * * *
During a job interview, Tess Marshall rents an Airbnb in Detroit. Upon arrival, she finds Keith, who made a reservation on another rental site, already staying there. Despite being uneasy, Tess decides to stay with him.
Barbarian’s horror begins when Tess discovers a secret, dark hallway in the basement. As she descends, she finds a room where someone has been confined.
When Keith returns home, he explores the basement on his own despite Tess’s assurances. Eventually, he finds himself in an extraordinarily dark and frightening stairwell. She searches for him. Keith is killed by an unknown figure suddenly appearing out of nowhere.
I learn more about this strange rental property here. AJ is the owner of the property. He is destroyed to maintain his reputation. Having run out of money, he tries to liquidate his Detroit property.
Upon exploring the basement, he discovers extra rooms. As a result, he starts wondering how much more value he could get for the house. He begins measuring it in a deranged manner. He is locked in a cage with Tess by the creature.
According to Tess, the creature wants to be a mother, so they can live if they pretend to be her child. In response, she snatches AJ from under his feet. As a result, Tess can escape to the street. At night, she meets a homeless man named Andre, who urges her to leave before the Mother appears. Without AJ, Tess may give up, but she won’t.
As AJ searches for Frank in the basement, he finds him in a room. Initially, he believes Frank is a victim. However, he finds videotapes of Frank abusing women. A gun is pulled out of Frank’s side drawer, and he kills himself. As AJ runs toward the exit, he takes the gun from his pocket. Tess startles him in the dark, and he shoots her.
Even though Tess lives, the two run away together.
Eventually, they meet up with Andre again. To hide from the Mother, he helps them.
Tess’s bravery appears to have inspired AJ. Now that he has turned over a new leaf, he wants to become a better person.
They are suddenly attacked by the Mother, who kills Andre in a surprise attack. On top of the water tower, she chases AJ and Tess.
As a result of AJ dropping the gun, they are left defenseless against the Mother. A strange idea pops into AJ’s head, but it doesn’t make sense at first. Tess is thrown off the tower, and the Mother is told to get her baby. After her, the Mother follows. My first thought was that both of them would die from the impact.
Tess is still alive when AJ checks on them. To justify throwing her, he tells her he didn’t mean to do it. AJ is brutally killed by the Mother, who also lived.
A sweet moment ensues between her and Jess. Jess shoots and kills the Mother, and the Mother says goodbye. She does.
Barbarian Ending Explained in details
In Barbarian’s ending, Tess returns to the Airbnb to save AJ. Frank just committed suicide. AJ and Tess escape the house. Despite Tess’s car crash into the monstrous woman, the Mother is alive and well. The Mother also kills a neighboring man, even though the two take refuge with him. To save himself, the actor sacrifices Tess after AJ shoots her and throws her over the water tower’s edge. As a result of the Mother’s cushioning, Tess was not injured. AJ’s eyes are gouged out and he is killed by the antagonist. She survives the terrifying ordeal after shooting the Mother.
Barbarian has an unexpected ending. No traditional storytelling avenues are used in the plot to keep the audience guessing. A lot needs to be unpacked about the horror film’s end. AJ and Frank are compared by Barbarian, among other things. Moreover, the film’s themes ultimately mean a result of the ending.
Original Title: Barbarian
Genre: Horror/ Thriller
Runtime: 1hr 42min
Original Language: English
Written & directed by Zach Cregger
Release date: September 9, 2022 (USA)