‘Out Of Darkness’ Ending Explained & Movie Recap: Does Beyah Save Heron?

The premise of Scottish director Andrew Cumming’s Out of Darkness is fairly simple: a group of people trying to survive a monster in the wilderness. But here’s the exciting thing: the film is set in the Stone Age, 45,000 years in the past, to be exact. This adds value to the narrative, which is further enhanced by the breathtaking cinematography that relies a lot on the vast, open terrains of Scotland and a morbid color palette. Adam Janota Bzowski’s pulsating background score is a game changer. It is a technical marvel for sure, but the story falls short after a very promising start. The climatic twist is to blame here, and, in my opinion, it bogged down the film.


Spoilers Ahead

What Happens in the Film? 

Out of Darkness begins with a story, told by the old to the young. As it happens, it’s their own story. They’re a group of six: Adem, who is the leader and automatically alpha equivalent; his brother Geirr; Ave, who’s carrying Adem’s child; Adem’s son Heron; this old (and wise) man; Odel; and a drifter, Beyah. The group has reached a new land and is hoping to find food and shelter there. But the land is filled with endless highlands and (most likely) many unknown dangers. But Adem is both adamant and confident about the place. Odel is not too enthusiastic about venturing into this unknown land, but Adem is not in a mood to listen to him or anyone. With someone like him running the show, things are destined to go bad, and that’s exactly how it goes. When Adem and Geirr discover the bloodied remains of a wild animal, they realize that something vicious is around. But Adem is foolish enough to keep it away from his group. In the dark of the night, when the group is starving, they hear a very ominous, screeching sound coming from a creature they can’t see. The creature goes away shortly, but within a few seconds, the group realizes that Heron is gone. Shortly before all that happens, Beyah has her first period. She is understandably confused by this sudden change in her body, but Ave tells her not to worry now that she has value, hinting at Beyah turning into a woman and bearing Adem’s child in the foreseeable future.


Does Adem die?

Under the circumstances, it’s unlikely for Heron to survive. But no man would refrain from going after his own son, and Adem is no different. Especially given that it’s a matter of pride for him. So he gallantly enters the woods, and the group has no choice but to follow. Of course, it doesn’t take long for them to realize what a terrible mistake their leader has made when Adem tries to launch an attack on the creature, only to end up heavily injured with most of his face mutilated. With Ave suffering to a great extent and everyone else starving beyond tolerance, Beyah suggests that they kill Adem and consume him. Geirr is against this idea, but Odel and Ave are pragmatic enough to endorse it. In a fitting manner, the alpha gets eaten by the rest. It can very well be said that Adem did some good for his group after all!

Who kidnapped Heron?

With Adem gone, there’s a shift of power in the group dynamics, and despite Geirr wanting to step into the leadership role, the rest are not too fond of the idea. The “old and wise” Odel doesn’t want to think of Geirr as anything but the muscle. Ave, of course, has importance as she’s carrying a new life. But Beyah is a stray who might just have been responsible for bringing the demon to the group. At least that’s what Odel thinks. He points out that the creature first attacked them on the night when Beyah had her period. According to Odel, period blood is strong enough to attract the creature like a magnet. With Odel’s profound logic (pardon my sass here), Ave quickly turns “Team Odel,” and the two decide to offer Beyah to the demon, hoping it will spare them. Geirr is not okay with it, but Odel quickly knocks him out. Odel and Ave forcefully hold Beyah and start calling out for the creature. But Beyah manages to overpower them and get away. The creature does arrive; you get to see it properly for the first time, and it looks very much like a human. The film’s best-kept secret is revealed soon, when you realize it’s a Neanderthal woman wearing a mask and making the creature-like sound. Odel and Ave expectedly die, and the Neanderthal takes away Ave’s body. It also gets pretty clear that this woman is the one who took Heron.


Does Beyah save Heron?

Realizing there’s no supernatural monster or anything, Beyah goes after the Neanderthal woman. She is stopped in her pursuit by Geirr, who believes they shouldn’t attack the Neanderthals because they’re the same. But Beyah believes they’re superior, which, if we speak historically, is not exactly wrong. I also feel Out of Darkness is inherently Beyah’s story, and the film’s climax only confirms it further. Once she discovers the cave of the Neanderthal, she spots a male outside of it. Even though the Neanderthal male is clearly bigger and stronger than her, Beyah is smart enough to win the battle and eventually kill him. Inside the cave, she finds the woman and, unsurprisingly, Heron too. But he’s looking fit and fine, and most importantly, well-fed. Beyah also notices that Ave’s body is being kept in a respectful manner, which very much looks like the Neanderthals wanting to honor her. While it seems like Heron has found a rapport with these people, Beyah doesn’t want to take a chance and effectively murders the woman. Heron condemns the act, but Beyah tells him that this is the only way to survive. However, she soon comes to the conclusion that the Neanderthals, like them, were also looking for a better life and meant no harm. The film finds itself in this strange place of morality, which doesn’t quite make sense. It’s understandable that the director wanted to leave a lasting impact, but I don’t think Out of Darkness‘ ending is convincing enough given how the film progressed. You’re welcome to think otherwise, nonetheless.

Rohitavra Majumdar
Rohitavra Majumdar
Rohitavra likes to talk about movies, music, photography, food, and football. He has a government job to get by, but all those other things are what keep him going.

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