Apostle Movie: Ending Explained, Theories and Questions Answered

Apostle is here just in time for Halloween and this new movie doesn’t exactly explain everything and will leave you lots of questions. We’re going to do our best to answer them and give you our theory as to what that ending meant. 

In case you haven’t seen the movie yet, we highly recommend you go give our preview a read before diving in and it should go without saying that there are spoilers below.


When is the movie set?

The movie is set in 1905.


Why was Jennifer taken?

The cult is under threat. The King of the mainland has done his best to cut all supply routes and we know that the harvest on the island is weakening. They captured Jennifer and bought her back to the island as a bargaining chip and put a ransom on her for a safe return. This thread is never really developed on towards the latter stages of the film as the reasoning kind of becomes irrelevant.

Throughout the movie, we know Quinn and Malcolm are terrified of intruders. We don’t know exactly why the pair left the mainland but it’s likely they’re being hunted for crimes against the King.


What cult is it? Is it based on a real cult?

The cult is, of course, purely fictional although it does share some similarities with older cults (with the exception of the Goddess in this case existing). When the men are brought to the church they’re asked to recite from the book of Therese, specifically verse 7 chapter 12. This is of no relation to any existing religion today.


What are they worshipping?

We first grab a glimpse of what the community is worshipping early on when she’s drinking the blood of Thomas. We learn when Quinn and Malcolm first go to the island, they discover an old hooded woman and cave paintings that serve as instruction as to how to use the Goddess to grow life on the island. Early on, they fed her the blood of animals (against her will) and that later stopped working. That’s when they used human blood. Unfortunately, during the movie, human blood was no longer effective either as their croplands and livestock were failing to renew their life.


Why did Quinn kill Ffion?

Early on, Quinn witnessed the birth of a lamb which came out disfigured and died instantly. This has to do with the fact the Goddess they’re worshipping is tainting all life on the island. If Ffion was to go ahead with the birth, it would’ve likely killed her. It just so happened that the abortion he tried to perform killed her.


Who is the Gimp?

One character that never got any backstory or context was the Gimp that fed the Goddess. The subtitles of the movie simply refer to it as the ‘creature’.


Who is Thomas and was he part of another cult?

Dan Stevens as Thomas in Apostle

Details regarding Thomas Richardson’s past are given out slowly throughout the movie. We know he was part of an old religion destroyed and as he put it was “shown the devil”. His religion is directly tied to your more traditional Catholicism as there’s a cross featured in his flashback. His religion was destroyed by a group of Chinese warriors who branded him with a cross on his back. We know they were Chinese because they were speaking Mandarin during the raid. No further context was given on the raid.


What happened at the end?

Thomas didn’t understand the ancient tongue but was implanted with seemingly the same powers as the Goddess. At the end, he became connected to the island and seemingly had powers to make things grow again. Malcolm didn’t seem phased by this and did hint to it earlier in the movie.

Here’s our theory, he’s now becoming either the gimp figure or a new God for the island. Malcolm wasn’t phased by him merging with the island which could suggest he’s become the gimp like creature whose job is to protect and feed the island. That’s just a theory, though.

What did you think? What did the ending mean? Let us know in the comments below or add your voice to the conversation thread on Reddit.

Kasey Moore

Kasey Moore is the founder and editor-in-chief of What's on Netflix. Kasey launched the site in 2013 after growing frustration with finding content on Netflix. He has an in depth understanding of the release cycles for Netflix and has developed tools to make navigating Netflix easier. Resides in Norwich in the UK.