‘One More Time’ Ending, Explained: How Does Amelia Return To The Present Timeline?


Netflix’s Swedish comedy-drama film “One More Time” is a simplistic tale with thoughts of lost relationships and abandoned friendships embedded inside. The plot follows Amelia on her 40th birthday, as the woman recalls her 18th birthday celebrations as the best time of her life and then magically finds herself reliving that very day. The themes of getting second chances in life and correcting one’s past mistakes are mostly dominant here but limited to a mostly entertaining level. With an aesthetic and content value more appealing to young adults and a central idea that is pointed more towards a mature audience, “One More Time” tries to bring it all together and fairly succeeds without being too shabby.

Spoilers Ahead

‘One More Time’ Plot Summary: What Is The Film About?

Amelia begins her day in a disgruntled mood, even though it happens to be her birthday. The main reason for her feelings is that Amelia has just turned forty and has started to realize how time is just slipping away. Having imagined her life to be something great after graduation, Amelia has not been able to fulfill any such dreams. She still lives in her hometown, works at a clothes store, and is currently without any friends or a partner in life either. The day turns from bad to worse when her employer tells her that she is going to be replaced because of her inefficiency at work, and Amelia angrily quits the job herself. Totally dejected by such a horrid day, she goes to the local pub to have a drink by herself. Another woman now walks into the place to collect a big order of pizzas for her party, as it happens to be her birthday too. Amelia recognizes the woman right away, for they used to be the best of friends during their childhood and teenage years, but had then grown distant. The woman, Fiona, is now a popular singer and quite famous among fans and friends, very unlike Amelia.

After exchanging some small talk, Fiona leaves the pub, and Amelia is left to talk about their friendship with the bartender. Fiona and Amelia were very close friends who would always celebrate their birthdays on the same day together but had grown apart after a certain age. Talking about this reminds Amelia of their thirteenth birthday, when the two young girls had written their wishes on chits of paper inside a box and then buried the box at a specific location near the hills. Although they had decided to open the box together when they turned eighteen, such an occasion never came since the two were no longer friends at that age. With only sad thoughts and lots of time on her hands, Amelia goes to dig up the box and finds her own childish wish, which was to just be a cool person. She then attempts to read Fiona’s wish, but the paper flies away, making her chase it hurriedly. By the time Amelia gets hold of the paper and is about to read it, she does not realize that she is standing in the middle of the road and that the woman has been hit by a truck. As Amelia wakes up the next time, she finds herself in her parent’s house on the morning of her 18th birthday, having somehow returned to relive the past!

What Had Fiona Wished For On Their Thirteenth Birthday?

Amelia cannot believe whatever is going on at first as she wakes up to her parents singing her happy birthday and congratulating her for turning eighteen. The woman is confused about the fact that even though her appearance remains the same as it was at forty, everyone else around her looks much younger. Other things in her surroundings, like contemporary music, books, or even the internet, are all from 2002, the year she actually turned eighteen. Soon her best friend Moa comes to Amelia’s house and accompanies her to school, where they give a class presentation together. This presentation happens to be on Hinduism and its beliefs, and as part of it, Moa mentions how life is perceived as a circle with reincarnations and rebirths, and Amelia wonders whether this is what is happening with her.

The woman is still unable to comprehend whether she is in a dream or in reality, but Moa, or even Amelia’s young boyfriend Max, does not get what she is saying. After all, everyone other than Amelia herself and we, the viewers, see Amelia in her original eighteen-year-old form and body. It is only through her words that they find her a bit odd, as they remark how Amelia sounds more mature suddenly. Their time at the school also highlights an important event, in which a young Fiona gets up on the stage to sing during a student’s show, but everyone in the audience rudely leaves. It is evident that Fiona is ostracized by most of her schoolmates, most probably because of her unconventional looks and her general disinterest in following a lifestyle like the others. Amelia also follows suit during this event, leaving with everyone else and remarking on how Fiona is a very unpopular girl.

After school gets over, Moa takes Amelia to her house, where she has arranged a grand birthday party for Amelia, and it was this party that the woman had been reminiscing about before getting magically pushed back in time. Filled with food, drinks, and young students and their friends, the party has everything that an eighteen-year-old wishes for. Amelia notices that Fiona has also come to the place with some of her friends, and she attempts to talk to her as well but is cut short by Max. In order to fit in with her own friends, Amelia once again talks badly about Fiona to them, the apparent “weird” kid in their school. It is later even mentioned that Amelia gained popularity among her friends and schoolmates during her teenage years, mostly because she suddenly developed conventional good looks.

On the other side, Fiona did not go through the same transformation, and she was left behind by everyone else, including her best friend, Amelia. While Amelia looks unaffected by this broken friendship, Fiona’s reaction does not look the same, as the girl still seems to wish to be friends with Amelia. Back at the birthday party, Amelia gets intimate with Max and then has an emotional expression at the sudden new possibilities that she can think of in her life. After having been forty years old with no friends or partner, she now thoroughly enjoys the time with Max and says the two could actually settle down and have a family. Although Amelia’s expressions make sense, eighteen-year-old Max absolutely freaks out to hear about commitments and responsibilities. The boy breaks up with Amelia, and she spends the rest of the night drinking alone and passing out.

When Amelia wakes up the next morning, though, she is in for an utter shock, as she is still in her parent’s house in her room, and it is still the morning of her birthday. This occurrence soon becomes the expected thing, as Amelia wakes up every morning on that very same day in 2002, and it is only she who has a memory of it. Realizing that she is stuck in a time loop, Amelia starts to enjoy the days with a carefree attitude initially but then also starts to think of ways to escape it. She tries to tell Moa everything, but the girl simply does not believe what Amelia tells her. The protagonist now gradually starts to understand that her childhood friend Fiona might be somehow linked with this, for it was after meeting Fiona that this time loop originally began. One day during the students’ program at school, Amelia approaches Fiona and asks her for advice. Unlike her other friends, Fiona does not laugh away at her concerns and instead remarks how Amelia’s life sounds like the plot of the film “Groundhog Day.” That night, instead of spending her time at the party, Amelia goes over to the video store run by Fiona’s family, and they watch “Groundhog Day” together. Amelia finally learns that she has to be a better person in order to be able to come out of the loop, but then mistakenly believes that she has to be good to Moa and Max.

Amelia now tries her best to be a better person to her friends, but that obviously does not work out, and she also eventually hears them talk ill about her behind her back. Amelia, who still has all the experiences and perceptions of her forty-year-old self, realizes that Moa and Max will not remain her friends after they graduate from high school. She arguably takes quite a long time to realize that it is Fiona with whom she has to be a better person and that mending their friendship would be the only way to skip the time loop. However, Amelia soon understands that this is not going to be an easy process either. She approaches Fiona at the party and apologizes to her for having cut off all contact with her, and then asks Fiona to be friends again. But Fiona definitely has her feelings too, and she recalls how her best friend had abandoned her and never tried to get in touch with her during their high school years. Fiona rejects the offer to be friends again and walks out on Amelia. That night, the protagonist returns home all the more dejected and is comforted by her parents, who tell her that being eighteen is a scary thought, too, since people are very confused and insecure at that age. It is perhaps this perspective that makes Amelia feel less guilty for her actions during her high school days and also more determined to fix her friendship with Fiona.

The next day at school, Amelia stands up for Fiona during her singing performance, making all the students stay and listen to her, and then approaches the girl once again. Amelia now apologizes once again and suggests that they go dig up the old box they had buried since it is their eighteenth birthday. Although Fiona is softer now, she does not agree to the plan, and Amelia now goes to the foothills all by herself. She finds the box and opens it to find her wish first, which is to be a cool person. Then, as she is about to pull out Fiona’s wish, the girl appears on the spot and momentarily tries to stop Amelia from reading her wish. The protagonist does ultimately open up Fiona’s wish to see that Fiona had hoped that Amelia would fall in love with her when they were eighteen, meaning that Fiona not only considered Amelia her friend, but she was also romantically interested in her. Before Amelia can react, Fiona starts running, and Amelia frantically follows, not noticing that she runs onto the open road. A blue truck, just like before, once again hits the girl, and Amelia falls unconscious.

‘One More Time’ Ending Explained: What Does Amelia Do After Returning To The Present?

When Amelia wakes up once again, she is magically transferred back to her present timeline, in which she is forty years old and has been hit by a truck on the road. What is perhaps even more magical than this shift of time is that the woman is mostly unhurt and just scratched up, even though the truck seemed to hit her with much force. Amelia now notices that it was an adult, Max, who had been driving the truck, and the two are thrilled to see each other after so long. Determined to reconnect with Fiona even in this present timeline, Amelia asks for a lift from Max and then tells him about everything. Max asks whether Amelia feels the same for Fiona, and the protagonist laughs, suggesting that she is either happy with the thought of being Fiona’s lover or that she is just too excited to be loved by anyone.

At Fiona’s lavish house, Amelia spots the woman with another lady holding a baby and believes that Fiona must have moved on in life. She thinks that the woman must be Fiona’s partner and the baby must be theirs, so Amelia hurriedly leaves the house. She goes over to the clothes store she used to work at and apologizes to her boss, who apologizes to her too, and Amelia’s job is restored. The woman then goes to meet with her parents and spends some time there before going over to the hillside where she and Fiona had buried their wishes so many years ago. Amelia digs up the box and reads Fiona’s wish again, which is still the same—to be loved by Amelia.

In a final turn of events, Fiona now comes to the place and sits beside her long-lost friend. Amelia apologizes to her once more, saying that she still wishes that Fiona was in her life. Fiona now reveals that the woman she was seen with at the party was her cousin, who had just become a mother, meaning that Fiona is very much single at present. She now says that she, too, wishes for Amelia to be in her life, and “One More Time” ends with the two friends repairing their abandoned friendship with promises to be crazy together. Amelia and Fiona would also probably be lovers, as both express their interest in each other, but the film does not leave any conclusive information about it. Even if the two women do not end up as lovers, “One More Time” does leave with the certainty that they would surely be friends and companions for life either way.

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Sourya Sur Roy
Sourya Sur Roy
Sourya keeps an avid interest in all sorts of films, history, sports, videogames and everything related to New Media. Holding a Master of Arts degree in Film Studies, he is currently working as a teacher of Film Studies at a private school and also remotely as a Research Assistant and Translator on a postdoctoral project at UdK Berlin.

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