The Ending Of Spell Explained

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The Ending Of Spell Explained
Paramount Pictures/YouTube

The protagonists of horror films often wheel and deal in the tropes that came before. Mark Tonderai’s 2020 film “Spell” pays homages to the familiar horror classics like “Texas Chainsaw Massacre,” and it’s even reminiscent of the ending of “Misery.” But where the film really comes into its own is its mythology. Corporate lawyer Marquis T. Woods (Omari Hardwick) escaped his rural upbringing in Appalachia as a teenager to move to the city. But after the death of his father, he flies his family to his home so that they can pay their respects.

Marquis is a man that resists his past. His father was religious and abusive, implied to be involved in the occult. Marquis may be looking for closure when he journeys to the funeral, but it’s not what he gets. Instead, his plane goes down in a storm and he is taken prisoner by a woman in the community, Eloise (Loretta Devine). With an injured foot, Marquis is confined to his bed and slowly comes to terms with Eloise’s nefarious intentions. His situation becomes more precarious as he tries to escape multiple times and rescue his family. “Spell” dives into the culture of Hoodoo in a fascinating way. But upon the final climax, it has several twists and turns to keep viewers guessing.

Eloise isn't who she appears to be

The Ending Of Spell Explained
Paramount Pictures/Hulu

From her first appearance, it’s clear that Eloise has ulterior motives. After Marquis wakes up in her house, she claims that she rescued him from his downed plane with no sign of his family anywhere. She insists that she is helping Marquis, but contradictorily locks him in her sewing attic and never lets him out. Marquis finds the truth of this when he breaks out one night and discovers her holding an occult sermon. She deals in Hoodoo, performing rituals to heal the community.

Marquis thinks that he can escape, only to realize that Eloise’s influence reaches farther than sermons in her barn. She is something else altogether, along with the rest of the town. The community Marquis crashes into is not just full of people on the outskirts of society, but those on the outskirts of time. Every person in the town used to be a slave in the 1860s. Through Eloise’s Hoodoo practice, they can hold onto life. The final plan is to sacrifice Marquis on the blood moon, which is the total lunar eclipse, and use his essence to fuel their own.

Marquis takes an unexpected turn

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The Ending Of Spell Explained
Paramount Pictures/YouTube

The main conflict of “Spell” is between the modern world and old magic. Marquis came from Appalachia but resisted the culture and became intent on making something of himself. After finding success in the corporate world, he refuses to acknowledge the workings of his father’s heritage. Marquis is unable to accept that this magic is real, but in the end, he is confronted with the truth. Not only is Hoodoo real, but he needs to use it to survive.

In a turn he never sees for himself, Marquis uses Eloise’s Hoodoo dust against her, incapacitating her. He then reveals that he has gone a step further and created a Hoodoo doll known as a Boogity. Since it is in Eloise’s image, he now has the power to control her. Even though he previously never gives credence to this type of witchcraft, he can no longer deny it. He gives into the occult, something that his father wanted from him from the beginning. Marquis’ use of his father’s tricks and knowledge allow him and his family to escape.

There's potential for a sequel

The Ending Of Spell Explained
Paramount Pictures/YouTube

Marquis and his family escape Appalachia with their lives after the encounter with Eloise. The last Marquis sees Eloise, he traps her in a burning barn. But this may not be the end of the story. Should the filmmakers want to continue the story, there may be a way. While some, like CBR, are pushing for a “Spell” prequel showing the beginnings of Eloise’s story, there is a more obvious route.

In the final moments of the film, it is revealed that Eloise’s Boogity is not destroyed. It lies in the remains of the house with its eyes open, as her voice echoes maniacally. If her Boogity survives the events, there is a high chance that Eloise does as well. She’s lived for 200 years with the help of Hoodoo and has shown the immense power the Boogity has. Knowing Eloise and what she capable of throughout “Spell,” it’s very doubtful that she perishes. As in most horror movies, the villain always comes back.

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