Phenomena (2023) Ending Explained (in detail)

By Romey Norton
Published: April 14, 2023 (Last updated: April 16, 2023)

We discuss the ending of the 2023 Netflix horror comedy film Phenomena, which will contain spoilers.

I love seeing female protagonists, and they usually come in threes (Hocus Pocus, Charlie’s Angels, Clueless, The First Wives Club, and the list goes on).

This is because of the classic ‘rule of three’ where this trio is more humorous, satisfying, and effective than other numbers. Audiences are given more conversations and information and can remember more when it comes from a group of three.

It’s a comforting trope that works very well in the 2023 horror movie Phenomena. They do have a fourth member for a short time, a young male student, but he’s let go when things get serious and challenging for the team.

Phenomena Ending Explained

Was the film really about the paranormal?

After a build-up of paranormal investigations, from using spirit boards to seeing someone possessed, the story takes a turn into investigating who is hurting the neighboring young girl.

With half an hour left in the film, we learn that the girl’s mother is the one beating her. Paz and Sagrario become trapped in their apartment, physically fighting the mum to survive. While Sagrario is being strangled (like the priest did at the film’s beginning), Gloria comes in with her trusted crystal ball and knocks the mum out.

This is an interesting part of the film as it shows that it’s the “living” we have to fear and not the “dead,” as the dead can’t hurt us. However, as the police take away the mum, they state that she’s disorientated. This suggests that maybe the mother was possessed, and this story isn’t over.

At the film’s beginning, Gloria does not turn up to meet Sagario with the priest, and there is tension between them. This is slightly touched upon throughout the film as both characters clash.

Towards the end of the film, when Gloria is possessed, the story becomes about saving a friend and their relationship to free her from this possession. This leads to Gloria and Sagario facing their demons.

In the final scenes, it’s almost as if they’re in a cave trying to escape the rising water beneath them and, again, taking the story away from the supernatural and into the real dangers in the real world. The physical and mental constraints we put ourselves in are far more dangerous than anything supernatural. The trio escapes and learns the history of the demon they had just faced and survived.

Does Gloria defeat her inner demons?

Gloria has lost her confidence in her medium/psychic abilities, which becomes prevalent when she becomes possessed and cannot free herself, as she claims she isn’t strong enough. After a serious pep talk with Father Giron, Gloria can break free from the possession of this evil demon.

Does Sagario speak to her dead Husband?

At the beginning of the film, Sagario finds a photo of her and Carols on the floor, and it looks ice cold, and she truly believes this is him trying to communicate.

The demon tries to trick Sagario into believing that Carlos is talking to her and promising they can be together forever.

However, after a good hit to the head and seeing a belt he bought her fall into the water, Sagario smiles as if she has let him go. In the final scenes, Sagario flirts with a waiter in a small coffee shop, so we can assume she is finally moving on.

What is the truth behind the spirit at the antique store?

The demon (or spirit) is of the priest who lived in the rectory that burned to the ground. The priest was a previous witch hunter who continued his practice of judging women because he was obsessed with out-beating a Frenchman who had killed more witches.

When the rectory burned down, he hadn’t completed his mission. He needed three witches to help resurrect and continue his work. This is why he drew the trio to the antique shop.

What did you think of the ending of the 2023 Netflix horror comedy film Phenomena? Comment below.

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