After first releasing in 2018, Hereditary has finally made its way onto Netflix but for some, its bone-chilling ending needs to be explained.
With a lack of new cinema releases in 2020, Netflix is proving to be one of the best ways film fans can get their new film fix.
While Hereditary may have originally released in 2018, its Netflix release on June 15th has been the perfect opportunity for fans to catch their first glimpse of the highly acclaimed horror.
Hereditary tells the story of the Graham family and begins with the death of grandmother Ellen before a deadly chain of events and the possession of a demon leads to almost the entire family losing their lives.
However, Hereditary’s ending, just as it did in 2018, has left many viewers scratching their heads.
Hereditary, which first released in cinemas in June 2018, begins with the funeral of Ellen, the mother of Annie Graham and grandmother to Charlie and Peter Graham.
Her death is the catalyst to a whole host of terrifying events as Charlie, the 13-year-old daughter of the family who was closest to Ellen, begins acting strangely – even going as far as beheading pigeon.
One night, 16-year-old Peter has plans to attend a party but is taken aback when his mother tells him to take Charlie along. Problems arise when Charlie eats a piece of cake that contains nuts, to which she has an allergic reaction.
Worried, Peter drives her to the hospital but before they get there, Charlie is decapitated when she leans out of the window for air.
Following another funeral, Peter is plagued by a malevolent presence which we’re led to believe is Charlie’s.
The Graham family are persuaded into performing a séance by Joan, a woman who Annie befriended at her support group, and things quickly go awry as items start to break around them and Annie appears to be possessed by a mysterious spirit – again thought be Charlie’s at first.
The ending of Hereditary
The final act of Hereditary sees all manner of s*** hit the fan.
Annie learns that her mother, Ellen, was friends with the séance-suggesting Joan and discovers that her mother’s decapitated corpse (there’s a lot of that in this film) is being kept in Joan’s attic, accompanied by a host of strange symbols written in blood and a photo album that mentions a demon by the name of Paimon.
This leads to a confrontation between Annie and her own husband, Steve, which sees him burnt to death.
Upon discovering his father’s remains and that his house is full of naked strangers, Peter is chased into their symbol-covered attic by Annie who then beheads herself as well.
The spirit that had possessed Annie now leaves her body and in-search of a new host, enters Peter.
Peter then follows the levitating corpse of his mother into the treehouse in their garden where he is greeted by the sight of a host of bowing followers and the decapitated head of his sister, Charlie, which sits atop a mannequin.
What it all means
If you’ve been left asking ‘what the f***?’ after watching Hereditary, then you’re not alone.
The film’s director, Ari Aster, told Total Film back when the film released that all the pieces of the puzzle are “all there.”
And if we delve beyond the many beheadings, then a bigger picture does start to emerge and it all ties in with Ellen, Charlie and a series of mysterious symbols that appear throughout the film.
Ellen had effectively raised Charlie as if the 13-year-old was her own and even before all hell breaks loose later in the film, Charlie is always shown as being a little off, most notably in the clicking sound she makes with her tongue.
This, many have argued, is because Charlie has been possessed by the demon Paimon since birth and Ellen has taken such a keen interest in her because, like séance-suggesting Joan, she is a member of the cult who follows Paimon.
So, when Ellen dies, Paimon’s spirit, which had been kept in-check, starts to unfurl and goes in search of a preferred male host.
The carefully planned out chain of events, including Charlie’s beheading, is all intended to get Paimon’s spirit into Peter, which by the end of the film happens, leading to the scene in the treehouse where he is finally crowned.
Hereditary is now available to stream on Netflix are arriving on June 15th, 2020.