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The Ending Of Black Island Explained

Netflix's latest intense thriller "Black Island" is set in a picturesque oceanside town. But don't let the scenery fool you — it's one twisted ride. It stars Philip Froissant as a young man named Jonas Hansen, who lives with his grandfather Friedrich (Hanns Zischler) after both of his parents are killed. A year after their deaths, we catch up with Jonas as he attends classes, flirts with his friend Nina Cohrs (Mercedes Müller), and works toward his goal of becoming a writer.

Everything changes when a substitute named Helena Jung (Alice Dwyer) is hired as a temporary replacement for the regular teacher after they're hurt in an accident. While at first glance Helena appears to be an approachable, enthusiastic teacher, she soon reveals her toxic nature as she seduces Jonas and becomes increasingly violent. Things escalate as Nina becomes determined to discover the truth behind Helena's intentions, which results in an intense and mind-boggling conclusion.

Let's take a look at the ending of "Black Island" and the fates of those at the center of the thriller.

Who is Helena Jung?

Before Helena joins the school as a teacher, we learn that she was involved in the death of Jonas' parents. At the beginning of the film, we watch her drive straight toward a couple on the wrong side of the road, causing them to swerve their car into a tree — though we don't know why. Knowing that she was involved in a murder should have prepared us for the future revelation about her identity, but alas, it's such a twist that few probably saw it coming.

At one point in the film, Nina not only infers that Helena had something to do with their teacher's injury, but also she pieces together the mystery of Helena's identity. In an old yearbook, she finds a photo of a teacher named Maria Roth, who looks identical to Helena. However, before Nina could learn more, Helena kills her.

We eventually learn that Helena, was in, fact Maria Roth's daughter by Friedrich, meaning Helena is Jonas' aunt. According to Helena, her mother was deeply in love with Friedrich, who wasn't emotionally invested in their affair. When Friedrich refused to step up after getting Maria pregnant, Maria ended her life, and Helena grew up to seek revenge on Friedrich and everyone he loves — including Jonas.

A violent end

After Nina's death, Friedrich has a seizure and is partially paralyzed and unable to speak due to the injuries he sustained. Helena reveals her cruel plan to him while he's in the hospital, then takes him home and faces him out the window so he can watch as she murders Jonas next. She then drugs Jonas before revealing her motivations to him, and as he gets more debilitated, she brings him to the pond in the backyard to drown him.

Thankfully, Jonas' instincts kick into gear at the perfect moment, and he's able to escape. The two continue fighting as they make their way indoors, and just as Helena seems as if she's going to successfully strangle Jonas, he stabs her in the chest with a piece of broken glass. The suspenseful end to the mega plot twist may be a bit unclear to those who look away for even a second, as the action takes place in a very short amount of time.

Nonetheless, the intense struggle makes for a thrilling conclusion to the twisted story.

The mysterious map

But wait — there's more! After killing Helena, Friedrich gives Jonas a letter from Maria. This is essentially her suicide note, corroborating everything Helena revealed. Jonas then (understandably) heads for the nearest ferry to get the heck out of Dodge as he seems to take in the gravity of his life and the events that just unfolded.

While on the ferry, Jonas spots someone wearing a familiar yellow raincoat that Helena previously wore, and he follows her, aghast. Thankfully, it turns out to be a complete stranger, and she makes small talk with Jonas about living on the island. She points out that the map is strange, and as Jonas gets closer we see that out of all the North Frisian Islands, only his appears to have been marked out with a black writing utensil of some sort.

Did Helena scratch out the island in anger as she made her way to take revenge on the person who caused her mother so much pain? It seems likely, and we wouldn't put it past her.