Spaceman Movie Director Confirms What We All Suspected About the Wild Ending

By Lauren Rouse Posted:
Adam Sandler in Spaceman

Spaceman left things on a cryptic note, and the director of Netflix's sci-fi film has since attempted to clear things up for any confused viewers. 

The psychological space drama follows Adam Sandler's astronaut, Jakub, on an eight-month mission to collect a sample of the mysterious Chopra cloud. Six months into the solo voyage Jakub is joined by an alien spider interloper - dubbed Hanuš - who helps him to reconcile his traumatic past, which has been holding him back from his relationship with his wife, Lenka (Carey Mulligan).

The final act of the movie sees Jakub and Hanuš (voiced by Paul Dano) enter the Chopra cloud where they experience an ethereal vision of time and space. Jakub then seemingly comes to terms with his past problems and is rescued by a passing South Korean spacecraft, while Hanuš perishes in the cloud. 

Spaceman Director Discusses the Film's Ending

Adam Sandler in Spaceman movie

Like the majority of the movie, Spaceman's ending is designed to raise questions and there are many opinions over what the film is really trying to say.

Following the release of Spaceman on Netflix, director Johan Renck spoke to Inverse about the ending of the film. 

He revealed that the Chopra cloud is meant to illustrate that "time doesn't exist" and that "there's always a way to start anew:"

“It's almost a string theory idea that time doesn't exist. What Hanuš says in that cloud is that everything is permanent, yet nothing ever is, which means the takeaway from this experience is whatever you've done in your life, whatever mistakes you've made, whatever the wrong steps you've made, instead of dwelling on that and not being able to move away from that, you can always start anew. There's always a way to start anew.”

This experience allows Jakub to "understand that the universe is as it should be" before Renck effectively summed up the movie's theme with: "deal with it and move on": 

"It's a very kind of esoterical way of saying: deal with it and move on. Because that's all we can do in life. Whatever tragedy, whatever beauty, whatever happens in life, we have to deal with it and we have to move. We have to continue our journey as humans without being trapped in ideas. Jakub gets to understand that the universe is as it should be. Everything is permanent until you decide it's not permanent anymore and you can change it and make it into something new."

The director added in an interview with Radio Times that many aspects of Spaceman's ending, such as whether Hanuš is real, are "in the eye of the beholder", ie. up to the viewer:

"It's all in the eye of the beholder. I've shown this film to friends. Some people think that Hanuš is real. Some people think that Hanuš is a figment of Jakub's imagination and his inner monologue, so to speak. My production designer who I've worked with for 20 years doesn't believe anything happened. He believes that Jakub is sitting at home in his apartment in Prague being depressed after his wife has left him and this is all going on in his mind."

"It's like, whatever floats your boat. There is no truth to these matters. It's like reading a book, or listening to a song, or reading a poem. Your own experiences will guide how you take in the film, basically."

[Spaceman Plot Explained: The True Meaning of the Movie]

What Happens After Spaceman Ends?

As one might expect from a film like Spaceman, which is closer tonally to philosophical sci-fi films like Solaris or Interstellar, many plot details are designed to be open-ended. That remains true until the final frame of the film.

While Spaceman successfully completes Jakub's character arc, allowing him to process his past and discover his true goal - to be with his wife - the film doesn't confirm whether their relationship works out.

Spaceman ends on a phone call between the couple, with Jakub on the South Korean spacecraft, finally apologizing for having left her. The final shot sees Lenka smiling on the phone while looking up at the stars. 

It's unclear whether Jakub ever makes it back to Earth to be with his wife, or whether she takes him back, and it's unlikely that audiences will ever know the answer to those questions. There is no post-credits sequence and with Spaceman covering the entirety of the plot of the novel it is based on (Spaceman in Bohemia by Jaroslav Kalfař), it makes sequel prospects extremely unlikely.

Therefore, like much of the film, the outcome of Lenka and Jakub's relationship after the credits roll is up to the audience. 

Spaceman is streaming on Netflix now.

- In This Article: Spaceman
Release Date
March 01, 2024
Adam Sandler
Carey Mulligan
- About The Author: Lauren Rouse
Lauren Rouse has been a writer at The Direct since the site launched in 2020. She has a huge passion for everything pop culture and currently writes news articles for the Marvel, Star Wars, DC and video game branches.