‘The Seeding’ Ending Explained & Film Summary: Is Wyndham Stone Dead Or Alive?

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A hiker travels to the Utah desert to photograph the solar eclipse, not knowing it was the last day of him exercising his free will. Barnaby Clay’s debut feature film, The Seeding, is visually eerie and exciting, but with a predictable plot. Wyndham Stone traveled alone to the desert, and after taking pictures of the solar eclipse, he was on his way back to his parked car. All of a sudden, Stone heard a boy weeping. He was concerned when he found out that the boy, Orion, had lost his parents. Stone decided to help him, and Orion started to walk in the direction he believed his parents had gone. The innocent boy turned completely wicked all of a sudden. He did not seem as lost as he was before, and Stone could not figure out what he was after. Stone stopped following Orion once he realized that he had been tricked. But why did the boy want a stranger to be stranded in the desert? And where were his parents?

Spoiler Alert


Why did Stone’s escape attempts fail?

Wyndham failed to find his way back to his car, and he was stuck in the desert with no food or water. Quite unexpectedly, he came across a tin shelter where a woman lived. At that moment, he might have considered himself lucky, but it would eventually turn out to be his biggest mistake. Stone did not have much of a choice; he would either die of thirst or he could seek help from the woman. He chose the latter and climbed down to her house. There was something ominous about the place. The woman did not seem surprised to see a stranger walk into her house and instead calmly offered him food. It was as if she had been waiting for his arrival and had cooked a meal for two. Stone did not have an appetite, and all he wanted was some water. He hoped she could help him find his car, but Alina did not say much. Stone decided to rest at her place for the night and leave the next morning. To his surprise, the ladder he used to climb down to her place was suddenly gone. Alina explained that the villagers might have taken it for their use, but instead of helping him find a way to leave, she continued with her chores. Stone started to feel helpless and trapped.

The next morning, he grabbed a claw hammer and tried to use it to climb the rocks, but it was a steep path. Out of nowhere, a severed animal head was flung in his direction, and he ended up falling to the ground. When he came to his senses, he was in agonizing pain. The hammer was stuck to his leg, and Alina helped to remove it. Stone screamed and cried in pain, and he spent the next few days living under Alina’s care. When he came to his senses, he was all the more frustrated. He believed Alina could have asked the villagers for help, but instead, she did nothing to help his situation. Given the fact that he had no choice, he soon figured out that Alina had held him captive. Alina requested him to not fight his destiny, and she promised to take care of him always. But Stone refused to give up, and he continued to search for help. He was overjoyed when he noticed a few villagers walking past and asked them to help him get out of the place. Stone assumed he would finally leave the cursed land, but he soon realized that the villagers did not intend to help him. They brought him a rope, but instead of pulling him out of the pit, they tortured him. They spoke a foreign language, and they enjoyed the humiliation. It was only after Alina asked them to stop that they left. Later, when Stone asked Alina about the villagers, she simply explained that they were bored and stupid. After everything he had been through, Stone refused to get back in the house. The villagers abused him that night, and he was not left with much of a choice, so he ended up staying at Alina’s.


What led to Lepus’ death?

It was Harvest Moon, and Wyndham was still living at Alina’s place. He had gotten more comfortable, and he had stopped complaining. When Alina handed him the clothes of a man, he was a little surprised, but he did not ask her about it. He sowed seeds on the land to keep himself engaged. Even though he was living in the middle of a desert, he had come to realize that the pit was almost a microcosm in itself, and it was a fertile piece of land. The villagers brought goods for Alina, ranging from chocolates to alcohol. Wyndham could not help but express his surprise upon seeing the range of products. He wondered where they had gotten the goods from, but Alina believed it was better not to ask and simply enjoy what they were provided with. Stone assumed that Alina too was once a victim, and she had eventually accepted her fate and lived at the mercy of the villagers. Stone had managed to somewhat hide his frustration for quite some time, but after getting drunk that night, he was once again agitated. He could not believe that both he and Alina were being held hostage by violent, obscene children. It baffled him to think that even after everything Alina had been through, she was still not ready to support him and find a way to escape from the place. Stone was too drunk to think about the consequences of his actions, and he ended up sleeping with Alina that night;not realizing that his one action would shorten his lifeline.

The next morning, after stepping out of the tin house, Stone noticed a young boy named Lepus staring at him. Unlike the rest of the rowdy children, Lepus seemed more collected and was genuinely interested in learning more about the world from Stone. Given the kind of products the kids brought to Alina, it was obvious that they had access to other human beings, and Stone assumed that if he could convince Lepus to help him, maybe he could leave the place. When he met Lepus again, he encouraged the young boy to leave the desert and see the world. Lepus called the place “palace,” and he believed he would not be allowed to leave. It was evident that something was controlling the villagers, but Stone had yet to figure out what it was. Stone promised Lepus to take him along if he could help him escape. Lepus also asked if Alina could come along with them, and Stone promised that the three of them would be a family once they made it out of the desert. Alina overheard the entire conversation, and she was visibly saddened by Lepus’ response. Lepus ultimately decided to help the stranger, but it seemed Arvo, a rude young villager, had overheard their conversation, and it ended up costing Lepus his life. Alina was traumatized when she found his body. She screamed out of frustration and repeated that brothers were not meant to behave this way. It was evident that Lepus was her son, and she blamed Stone for the death of her child.


Who was Alina?

Alina was not the helpless victim that the hiker assumed her to be. Everything that Stone encountered was planned way ahead, and he was not the first man to go through the haunting experience. There was a portrait of an old woman at Alina’s house, and when Stone asked her about it, she replied that the woman in the photograph was the first mother, suggesting that she was the one who started the cult. The little boy, Orion, had tricked Stone into believing that he was lost. His role was to deviate him from his path and for him to end up at Alina’s place. All the kids whom Stone had called evil and nasty were Alina’s children, or at least many were; the rest, we assume, were either Alina’s brothers born into the same cult (this is merely an assumption). Alina had a visible, long red mark on her back, and one of the boys involved in killing Lepus had the same mark, suggesting that they all belonged to one big family. The work of the males was to bring hostages to Alina and gather food. Alina’s role in the cult was to become a mother. When she was young, her mother warned her that the outside world was fake, whereas the world they belonged to was the only real place. Alina never dared to leave the place; she had accepted her fate and dedicated herself to becoming a nurturing mother. We can assume that she has been waiting for the right man to come her way to keep the cycle going. The ring that Stone had found while harvesting and the clothes that Alina had offered him suggested that several other men had fallen victim to the cult. Maybe the idea of a world outside the one she knew was exciting for Alina, but after spending years living in the desert, she had come to accept the fact that there was no escape.


What was Stone’s purpose?

After Lepus was killed, Alina decided it was time for Wyndham to be locked in the cage. Even after providing him with food and clothing, he refused to give up on his escape plans, and that was reason enough for Alina to choose the cage as a last resort. So, why was Stone lured to Alina’s house? The answer is simple: Alina needed him to reproduce. Stone’s seed was all that the mother needed, and it was very clear from the beginning that she did not expect Stone to take on any responsibilities as the father. It was only after he was put in a cage that Stone realized what Alina’s plan had been all along. Stone was offered a meal in his cage, and as time passed, he started to lose his sanity. He felt hopeful when he noticed a hiker close to the pit, and he begged her to help. The woman was willing to help Stone, but Alina’s devilish brother found her, and they did not hesitate to kill her. Stone lost all hope, and he simply wept and screamed in pain. A folk ceremony towards the end of The Seeding suggested the significance of motherhood within the family. They celebrated Alina’s motherhood and fed on her milk to feel closer to nature.

Later, when Alina offered Stone a blanket, he begged her to accept him back into her life. By then, he had already realized that Alina was the decisive figure in the family, and if he could win her over, he could have a chance at life. But Alina never intended to protect Stone. All she needed from him was his seed, and since the child was already conceived, he was of no use to her anymore. The only reason she had not killed him yet was because she was waiting for the birth of their child. Even if Stone had been supportive, she would have had to kill him anyway. He was not of the same blood, and therefore he did not have a place in the cult. Stone never really had a choice; Alina had decided his destiny the minute Orion had come across him in the desert.


How Did Wyndham Stone Die?

It was during the blue moon that Alina experienced contractions. The labor pain was unbearable, and the only person who could help her was Wyndham Stone. She walked out of the house and unlocked the cage. She begged him to help her, and Stone briefly considered helping her give birth to their child, but then he was lured by the ladder. The ladder that he used to get down to Alina’s house was there right before his eyes, and he could not help but walk towards it. On one hand, there was a slim chance of freedom, and on the other, there was a woman pregnant with his child who had tricked him and taken away all his joy. Stone left Alina and walked towards the ladder, but upon hearing the sound of his daughter’s first cry, he gravitated towards Alina. Even though he was held against his will, Stone’s primal instinct to look back was a nod to his desire to start a family. But if Stone was allowed to live, he perhaps would have always searched for ways to get out of the ‘palace’ with his daughter. He did not love Alina, and he was not born into the cult; therefore, his loyalty would always remain questionable.

In The Seeding‘s ending, Alina held her daughter in her arms and stated that one day she would become the Mother. Giving birth to a girl was crucial for the cult to survive; the women ruled because they were blessed with the power of reproduction. Alina gave birth to her daughter during the solar eclipse— the darkness when their daughter was born suggests the evil that would continue to dominate since the birth of the daughter came with the promise of another generation, which meant that more helpless souls would be hunted to serve the purpose of the cult.

The Seeding ended with the death of Wyndham Stone. He was killed after he served his purpose, and his body continued to rot outside Alina’s house. Alina had stated that nothing went to waste in the desert, and this explained the very first scene of the film, where Alina’s daughter is seen feeding on a rotten finger (yes, the finger belonged to her father!).


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Srijoni Rudra
Srijoni Rudra
Srijoni has worked as a film researcher on a government-sponsored project and is currently employed as a film studies teacher at a private institute. She holds a Master of Arts degree in Film Studies. Film History and feminist reading of cinema are her areas of interest.

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