Pandorum (2009) Ending Explained

Pandorum ending explained - brainless pen

Last updated on April 5th, 2024 at 09:22 pm

Pandorum (2009) is a space-horror movie of 2009. It begins with Ben Foster waking up from some kind of hypersleep. The man seems to be on a spaceship and suffering from amnesia.

As the story unfolds, we discover something has gone horribly wrong. And the movie starts progressively becoming a horror film.

The film Pandorum (2009) was directed by Christian Alvart. He also directed Case 39 in the same year, which went on to be a modest box office success while Pandorum typically failed. However, Pandorum positively received an average rating from critics.

Pandorum Film Plot & Ending Explanation

* * * Spoiler Alert – If you haven’t seen the movie yet, turn back now! * * *

The movie starts in the year 2174. There are 40 billion people on the planet. The overpopulation of mankind is resulting in a shortage of resources and a near-extinction of mankind.

Scientists build an interstellar ark to extend the human race to another planet. They call it Elysium. The ark takes sixty thousand people to the planet, named Tanis. On the planet Tanis, which is very similar to Earth, there is water, oxygen, and adequate resources.

As the journey takes 123 years, passengers are induced into hypersleep. To maintain the ship, a rotating crew wakes every two years. Elysium receives a message eight years after its launch that confirms mankind’s demise on earth. As a result, the humans of Elysium are the last of mankind.

pandorum 2009 movie scene 2

The scene cuts to two flight crew awaking to maintain the ship. They are Corporal Bower and Lieutenant Payton. They seem like they are experiencing temporary amnesia for a long time sleeping inside a capsule.

They find out that the nuclear reactor of the ship is disabled. As a result, they can not go to the bridge. They assume the ship might have experienced a power surge that caused this damage. Bower searches for the reactor using the ventilation system. Meanwhile, Payton accesses the ship’s computer.

Bower discovers a disemboweled body and a wounded mechanic telling him to escape. There are a group of cannibalistic humanoids that seem to respond most to sound when they hear the noise.

He keeps going. Eventually, he meets a woman named Nadia who is an environmental scientist. Additionally, he meets a farmer named Manh. Unfortunately, Manh doesn’t speak English. Both of them are hostile.

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They band together, and Bower leads them into a barricaded chamber. Inside, they find a cook named Leland. Having lived off the water leaking into the ship for years, he has been awake for years. The algae it creates led him to cannibalize himself.

Payton meets Corporal Gallo. He claims that the ship is lost in space, and his team died of self-defense.

Bower’s group is fed by Leland, who shows them murals depicting what happened after the Earth vanished after an unknown catastrophe. Gallo fell from Pandorum and became insane and killed his crew. Other passengers developed Pandorum due to his influence.

Those unfamiliar with Pandorum, let me explain it in very short terms. Pandorum is a space disorder where astronauts start hallucinating and become violent. Their personality changes dramatically and starts suffering from severe anxiety and depression.

Gallo went back into hypersleep after goading them into a violent and tribal culture. This process was helped by an enzyme designed to assist colonists in adapting to life on Tanis. Their descendants have become cannibalistic mutants. Leland gasses the group so he can eat them. However, Bower convinces him to stabilize the reactor.

Bower hopes to find his wife in an area designed for families in hypersleep as they search for the reactor on the ship. Although she remembers that when she refused to join him on Earth, she also died. As a result, he almost gives up and is pushed closer to insanity by this revelation.

Bower’s group finds the reactor after surviving an encounter with cannibals. Mutants sleep under the reactor, and Bower walks across a walkway to reset it.

A portion of the walkway collapses, and Bower descends into the mutant pit in search of a ladder.

Bower restarts the reactor while Manh distracts the mutants. This results in a large number of mutant deaths.

Manh is cornered by the mutant leader after Leland flees. To kill his leader, Manh first tries to kill a mutant child but is fatally struck by one.

Payton prepares a sedative for Gallo as he becomes increasingly agitated. Payton reveals that Gallo was a hallucination and that he is the real Gallo as they wrestle over sedatives.

When Gallo heard Earth was gone, he developed Pandorum, killing the real Payton long ago. As a result of entering Payton’s pod, Gallo mistakenly believed himself to be Payton when he awoke with amnesia.

At the bridge, Gallo uses the sedative to kill Leland. Gallo opens the bridge’s shutters when Bower and Nadia confront him. No stars can be seen from the ship, which is adrift in deep space.

pandorum 2009 movie scene 3

Bower is further pushed into insanity by the shock. Gallo uses Bower’s mental condition to argue that they should maintain the violent society rather than revive civilization.

Through the windows, Nadia can observe bioluminescent ocean life, and the computer displays the time since the mission launched: 923 years. Eight hundred years ago, the ship sank in the ocean after reaching Tanis.

He breaks a window as a result of his hallucination of a mutant attack. Bower and Nadia climb into a hypersleep pod as water pours into the ship.

Following the flood, the remaining 1,212 pods are ejected to the surface, while Gallo and the mutants drown.

They watch as other pods ascend near a lush coastline.

At the beginning of the movie Pandorum, what is the text saying?

1969: Man lands on the moon. World population: 3.6 billion

2009: Kepler telescope is launched to search for Earth-like planets. World population: 6.76 billion

2153: Paleo-17 space probe lands on planet Tanis. World Population: 24.34 billion. Food and water shortages are commonplace.

2174: The battle for earth’s limited resources reaches the boiling point. Spacecraft Elysium is launched.

What caused the other humans not to become troglofaunal creatures?

In response to Nadia’s claim that the creatures are transformed crew members, Bower asks this question. Nadia responds that maybe they were awake for longer than they were.

However, there are several contradictions in this theory, making her an unreliable source of information. For instance, Gallo was awake for decades without any changes.

pandorum 2009 movie explanation

Secondly, Gallo awakened others from hypersleep over nine centuries ago, which means they cannot be those crew members.

As a result of her amnesia, Nadia may not remember how the enzyme works, and she even states that she isn’t sure if she is correct.

The accelerating enzyme was supposed to kick-start evolution, but a person doesn’t evolve in a lifetime.

Since populations evolve over generations, the genetic changes probably began only a few generations after the initial mutations. But instead of thousands of years, it took only a few centuries.

The reason they weren’t affected would be this.

What is the origin of the Hunters?

It is possible that they were specimens that escaped the embryonic chamber. Livestock and wildlife repopulations will be held at Tanis until they are released. According to Nadia, this is not possible.

When the Elysium is in flight, he wonders if anything may have boarded it. Nadia feels that the creatures may have been with them all along. She may well be right.

As the movie progresses, it is revealed that Gallo succumbed to Pandorum eight years into the mission. His copilots were killed, and then he took over the computer systems. A variety of passengers were woken up to either be killed or exiled into the cargo hold to play his game. They hung themselves from ropes and fed themselves.

During the 923 years that followed, Gallo’s descendants became troglofaunal and continued Gallo’s game as tradition.

Who survived at the end of Pandorum?

The screen displays a note at the end,

Tanis Year One. Population: 1,213.

It is clear from the note that 1231 people have survived 123 years. Now, the human race will extend on planet Tanis.


Original Title Pandorum

Genre Sci-fi/ Horror/ Survival

Runtime 1hr 48min

Original Language English

Directed by Christian Alvart

Written by Travis Milloy, Christian Alvart

Tagline Worlds End. Fear Survives.

Release date September 25, 2009 (USA)

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Cast of Characters

Actor/Actress Name Characters Name
Dennis Quaid Payton
Antje Traue Nadia
Ben Foster Bower
Cam Gigandet Gallo
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