It’s a lonely feeling to be in a completely different land where people speak a language that you do not simply understand. As an alien in these foreign lands, one tends to notice things more precisely that the residents often ignore and move on. And sometimes, these foreigners bring a new perspective on things and solve a mystery that everyone else fails to notice. That is what happens in “Watcher,” where Julia (Maika Monroe), a former actress from America, moves to Bucharest, Romania, with her husband, Francis, after his promotion. As Francis keeps himself busy at work, Julia suffers an existential crisis as neither she understands these lands nor the language the people speak. She tries to fit in with the new society and, in the process, picks up on minute details and closely observes every face that passes by her. She gets paranoid as she believes a neighbor from the opposite building is constantly following her. While everyone around her believes that Julia is going crazy and fabricating a fictional world to keep herself engaged, it is only Julia who understands what’s going on around her and, in obsessive pursuit, she catches a serial killer hiding in a dark apartment in Bucharest. But who is this serial killer, or The Spider, as the film calls him? Let’s find out.
Who Is The Spider? What Happened To Irina?
Julia met her husband, Francis, in New York. Francis was a Romanian who grew up in America, where he worked for a marketing firm, while Julia was an actress who tried her luck in the film industry but failed to achieve anything substantial. Francis’ company needed someone to manage their Bucharest office, so they gave Francis a promotion and sent him back to his home country, and Julia decided to come along. As the couple moved into their new apartment in Bucharest, they learned about a serial killer named The Spider, who had recently murdered a 28-year-old girl, Ana Albescu, in the neighborhood. Julia became obsessed with the news and dug deeper, only to discover that The Spider had already killed three other women and was known to cut off the heads of his victims.
While carrying out her daily routine, Julia got paranoid as she often saw an old man, Daniel Weber, constantly following her or staring at her. Daniel used to live in the same neighborhood with his father and often “watched” Julia at night whenever she would stand near the window. Julia believed that it was Daniel who killed those innocent young women and thus started following him, only to find out that he used to work as a sweeper in a strip club called the Museum. She even reported Daniel but had no evidence against him, and everyone around Julia, including Francis, believed that Julia was suffering from a mental derangement due to a change in her environment.
However, at the end of the “Watcher,” when Julia took a subway train back to her apartment, she saw Daniel Weber in the same coach, probably following her again. At this time, Daniel was carrying a polythene bag in which Julia believed that he had kept Irina’s head and thus started panicking. Irina was Julia’s neighbor next door, who had gone to London to become a ballet dancer but returned to Bucharest after she injured her knee and started working as a stripper at the Museum, the same place where Daniel worked. Nevertheless, Julia quickly left the train and came back to her apartment. She decided to leave Bucharest and return to America, but while packing her bags, she heard some music coming from Irina’s apartment. Julia thought Irina had come back, but when she entered her apartment, she witnessed Irina’s body without a head. And before Julia could run for her life, Daniel wrapped a polythene bag around her head and knocked her down.
Julia was right all along. It was Daniel Weber, also known as the Spider, who was killing innocent young women in town. However, no one suspected him because he had that dumb face, which made him look like a feeble old man incapable of doing anything. Daniel was just another face in the crowd. He could easily disappear in it, and no one would pay heed. There was nothing unusual about him, and that was his only strength. But then came Julia, who not only noticed Daniel but also waved at him while he stood at his window looking at his next target. Irina’s life could have been saved if only the police or the neighbors, or even Francis, had tried to believe Julia. But unfortunately, no one did, and so Julia had to become her own hero to save herself from the monster.
‘Watcher’ Ending Explained: Is Julia Dead Or Alive?
It was quite thrilling for Daniel to discover that there was someone in the neighborhood who finally noticed who he was or where he lived. When he captured Julia in Irina’s apartment, the first thing he told Julia was that the night he attacked Irina, she literally screamed, and it was only Julia who heard her scream. She brought everyone into Irina’s apartment, and for a moment, Daniel believed that Julia would see him again like she used to spot him in the crowd, but before she could do that, all the neighbors decided to go back into the rooms unconcerned about the people living near them.
At the end of the film, it was Julia who screamed for help, but nobody came for her. Daniel slit her throat to stop her from screaming. Julia crawled on the floor to reach the table where Irina had kept her ex-boyfriend’s gun, but before she could get hold of it, she fainted on the floor. She lost a lot of blood, and Daniel believed that she was dead, so without any further ado, he decided to leave the apartment.
At the same moment, Francis returned from his company’s cocktail party. Earlier, at the same party, Julia and Francis had a bit of an argument. Francis felt sorry for making fun of Julia’s condition in front of his colleagues and wanted to apologize. In the bedroom, he saw Julia’s bag and tried to call her. He heard Julia’s phone ringing in Irina’s apartment, and as soon as he came out to check it, he saw Daniel leaving Irina’s apartment. The two men stared at each other, and before Daniel could run away, Julia shot Daniel in the back, thereby killing him on the spot. Hence, even though Julia lost a massive amount of blood, she didn’t die from the attack. She took out the gun from the table and killed the monster who had been killing innocent young women in Bucharest. As Julia, smeared in blood, came out of Irina’s apartment, she gave a look to Francis, probably trying to say, “See, I told you so.”
“Watcher” ends with a close shot of Julia’s face and doesn’t reveal her fate any further. However, we can speculate that after this devastating experience, Julia will probably return to America and break off her marriage with a man who has failed to believe in her. She may not want to spend her life with Francis, who made fun of her in front of colleagues and made Julia’s mental health an office joke. We do not know what she will do once back in her home country, as she said that she is still reevaluating her options, but I am damn sure that she will become a great detective.
“Watcher” is a 2022 Drama Thriller film directed by Chloe Okuno.