The End We Start From Movie Explained: What’s Up With the Ending?

On February 6, the online premiere of the British survival film “The End Where We Start” with Jodie Comer in the title role took place. This is a film adaptation of the debut novel of the same name by English writer Megan Hunter, which appeared on bookstore shelves in 2017. Benedict Cumberbatch’s company SunnyMarch, together with Hera Pictures, took over the film rights even before the book was published. In an interview, the actor and producer admitted that this is an “amazing story.” In the review below we tell you whether it really is so, at least in the plane of the movie screen.


the story is character-focused, not apocalypse-focused, and that’s appropriate here; realistic depiction of events unfolding during a global catastrophe; excellent acting performance from Jodie Comer, deserving the highest praise; nice star cast in supporting roles


a completely leisurely narrative, refusing action, where it is still provided for; the film is designed to give you a feeling for its narratives, characters, etc., but the unemotional tone of the story may hinder this; little Cumberbatch

“The End We Start From”

Genre: survival film, drama
Directed by Mahalia Belo
Starring Jodie Comer, Joel Fry, Mark Strong, Katherine Waterson, Benedict Cumberbatch
Premiere digital services (Vudu, Prime Video, Apple TV+)
Year of release 2023
IMDb website

London. It’s pouring like buckets, although such bad weather is known to be a common and even commonplace phenomenon for the capital of the United Kingdom. But this time nature had its own plans for Foggy Albion. A young pregnant woman is expecting a baby, but an environmental disaster in the form of a flood takes her by surprise. Nevertheless, the heroine manages to get to a hospital running on generators and give birth to a boy. And there, her husband, who was away, no longer hesitates to return.

Since London is heavily flooded, a couple with a baby in their arms seeks refuge with the man’s parents, who live in the countryside where the disaster did not reach. They own a cozy house, food supplies, and the new grandfather has a hunting rifle, so they can shoot a hare if necessary.

But after some time, the food crisis overtakes the heroes here too, so they will have to make a dangerous foray in search of food. When the world around us begins to go a little crazy, a young mother will have to do everything to protect her child and not die of hunger.

Here it should immediately be noted that “The End Where We Begin” is extremely far from the usual disaster films with large-scale scenes of the flooding of beautifully submerged megacities. This is a modest, unhurried and endlessly dark movie that talks about the difficulties of motherhood and not so much about the fierce struggle for survival, but for the opportunity to return to where you feel happy.

Even in the debut scene, the water in the bathtub symbolically fills the frame while the main character distantly goes about her business. A little later, the camera catches her reflection in the coffee table, clearly hinting that very soon the world will turn upside down. Yes, the narrative here is focused specifically on the young mother and the challenges she will have to face, while the outside world is of little interest to the authors – director Mahalia Belo and screenwriter Alice Birch.

And at the same time, there is completely no need to somehow blockbuster the plot, to make it more pop or spectacular for the sake of the general public. Please keep this in mind before watching.

Even with the realization that everything around will no longer be the same as before, the heroine cannot imagine herself in an environment alien to her. Her thirst to get home at any cost, to where it all began, communicates less about a desire to return to a past life that no longer exists, as about rebirth, a chance to start from scratch. After all, water, in addition to being a powerful and destructive element, is also one of the main sources of life. And together with a long-suffering mother, a catastrophe can become a help for the rebirth of the entire surrounding world.

Despite the modest depiction of the apocalypse, which occurs mainly behind the scenes, the creators managed to convey a great sense of hopelessness in the face of an inevitably approaching catastrophe, including a personal one.

There is no place for ostentatious heroism, but on the contrary, the man behaves like a rag, because he does not understand how to act in an extreme situation. The chaos engulfing society is also realistically shown: hungry lines for food, looting, man is a wolf to man, and that’s all.

Let’s not forget that the flood as a large-scale environmental disaster is a well-known topic for us, Ukrainians, in particular, those who suffered as a result of the terrorist explosion of the Kakhovka hydroelectric power station last summer. This nightmarish event is not the invention of a writer or screenwriter, or even a whim of Mother Nature, as in the movies, but the actions of pitiful creatures, exposing their essence. Unfortunately, this is our cruel reality.

Susie Lovell’s camera, as if glued, follows Jodie Comer’s character everywhere and does not let her out of sight for a minute.

Thus, a great responsibility fell on the shoulders of the 30-year-old Emmy and British Academy Award winner for her role in the series Killing Eve (and another BAFTA for the drama The Help), and the actress handled it perfectly. Here she has a scene where the heroine is hysterically hitting a wire fence, which instantly brings to mind another powerful mom, Sarah Connor. True, the latter faced a fiery apocalypse, and even in a dream, but here we have a completely real one, and the cause of the trouble is water.

Other stars, including Benedict Cumberbatch, fit well into the plot, but are too cameo to claim full audience attention. Except that Katherine Waterson’s character is memorable.

Films like The End Where We Start defy rational evaluation. Critics like them more, the mass audience much less, and here everything will depend on how metaphorical, unhurried stories in general and this particular one, about the power of motherhood, unity in difficult times and one’s own rebirth, will be close to you. Otherwise, it is better to choose to watch something from the high-budget imperishable films of our Roland Emmerich, God bless him.


“The End Where We Beginning” deserves reserved attention if you are sure that right now you need a dark, far from entertaining movie. Otherwise, you will be bored, but even under such circumstances, at least you will be provided with meaningful long shots of Jodie Comer.

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