Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny Ending Explained (In Detail)

By Marc Miller
Published: June 28, 2023 (Last updated: December 17, 2023)
2023 film Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny Ending Explained

We discuss the ending of the 2023 film Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny, which will contain spoilers.

Indiana Jones and The Dial of Destiny uses de-aging technology to show Indiana Jones and his associate Basil Shaw obtaining a partial artifact from the Nazis called the “Dial of Destiny.” The Nazi scientist they take the dial from, Voller, is hired 25 years later by NASA in the space race of 1969.

After being forced into retirement, Basil’s daughter Helena shows up, followed by government agents who think she knows the location of the second half of the artifact, known as an Antikythera — known as the oldest example of an analog computer that Archimedes used to determine astronomical positions decades early.

Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny Ending Explained

What happened to Indiana Jones’s son, “Mutt”?

We learn that Indiana Jones’s son, “Mutt,” was killed when he enlisted and was killed in action. Mutt was played by Shia LaBeouf in Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. We learn that Mutt died, which triggered Indy and Marion’s divorce proceedings when Helena asks Indy what he would do with the Dial of Destiny.

In an emotional scene, Indy tells Helena that he would go back in time and beg his son not to enlist in the war. Since this current film’s present-day is 1969, and the last movie was in 1957, he must have died during the Vietnam War.

Where does Indiana Jones travel back to in history?

Indiana Jones travels back to 213-212 BC during the battle of Syracuse by the Roman Republic. Initially, Voller and his associates use the Dial of Destiny to locate fissures in time to pass through. While taking a plane into the sky during a storm, Ford’s Indy is taken hostage on the plane, and Helena snuck on. Teddy follows them in his aircraft, chasing them to the portal.

While Voller lets Indy know his plan to travel back to World War 2 to kill the German president Adolph Hitler to win the war, Indy figures out the creator of the Dial, Archimedes, never accounted for the phenomena known as continental drift — Earth’s continents have moved over geologic time relative to each other — which Archimedes would not have known about.

Since Voller doesn’t consider continental drift for his calculations, they end up in 213-212 BC.

How does Indiana Jones make it back to the present day?

After surviving flying in the battle of Syracuse, where Voller and his team members are killed, Indy and Helena survive after parachuting out of the plane. Indy is struck by how he is now living in history, something he has studied his entire life. Indy tells Helena he’s staying and that there’s nothing left for him in 1969. Luckily, Teddy and the pilot, sleeping in the plane, land near them.

Teddy tells them they must leave soon because the portal is closing. Archimedes then shows up with his own dial, and Indy can speak to him because he knows the language. (Earlier in the film, Indy and Helena found the other half, but Archimedes had also traveled back through time because they found a modern watch in the artifact).

Indy asks if he can stay, but Helena won’t hear of it and knocks him out cold.

Who visits Indiana Jones at the end of Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny?

Despite reports stating that the actress would not appear in the film, Karen Allen’s Marion Ravenwood does visit Indiana Jones at the end of Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny. After returning safely from the siege of Syracuse by the Roman Republic, which took place in 213–212 BC, Ford wakes up in the apartment with Helena. Teddy and Marion arrive shortly after.

In the movie, they rekindle their love, which crumbled when their son was killed. They recreate their famous kiss from Raiders of the Lost Ark, except this time, Allen’s Marion asks Indy to kiss metaphorical bruises on her head, elbow, and lips. When the rest of the group leaves them alone to get ice cream, the camera pans from the street to Indy’s apartment.

We see him grab his fedora hanging on the laundry line over the fire escape.

Does Indiana Jones die at the end of Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny?

Indiana Jones does not die at the end of the film Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny. The last time we see Indy, he is kissing Marion, and we presume he is grabbing his fedora from the fire escape.

What did you think of the ending of the 2023 film Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny? Comment below.

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