The House That Jack Built might come to you like every other serial killer story at first. A psychotic killer who just likes to kills seems like the thing again. But no, there is so much in for this. For Jack as a character and the killing spree, he is on. The murders tell about nature and the constant failure Jack represents. Plus, their connection to Jack building a house is just another thing worth talking about. Lastly, it has a lot to do with heaven and hell metaphorically. So anyway, here we are looking at The House That Jack Built and getting its ending explained right.
The House That Built comes from Lars von Trier, who already has some really great movies similar to this one on his back. There is a lot of in-depth exploration going in movies of Lars von Trier, and we recommend you check his movies out. The House That Jack Built stars Matt Dillon, Bruno Ganz, Uma Thurman, Siobhan Fallon Hogan, Sofie Gråbøl, Riley Keough, and Jeremy Davies. Dillon picks up the role of the murderer Jack. So let’s begin with explaining the plot of the film first, then we will get the ending of The House That Jack Built explained right.
The House That Jack Built, well, of course, tells the story of the titular character. A failed architect from the 80s who according to the movie, several times tried to build a house he always desired. But every time, for a reason or two, he comes to a conclusion to demolish and restart his work again. Apart from being a failed architect, he turns himself into a psychotic killer who goes on a killing spree and becomes a media highlight with cops hunting him down. Jack likes to call himself Mr. Sophistication and leaves a note around every murder to have the media follow.
So The House That Jack Built as a film is Jack retelling five of his murder stories from among the more than 60 murders he has committed throughout his life. It sees him transitioning his murders and trying to up the level of the previous one he committed. But as hard as he tries, there are some cues and faults left behind now. The ones that eventually lead him to the bitter end, which was teased right at the beginning of the film. That is of him meeting Roman Poet Virgil or in the film, he is referred to as Verge.
The House That Jack Built Ending Explained
The House That Jack Built explores five different incidents where intentionally or unintentionally, Jack murdered someone. The first murder sees Jack driving down a road when he stumbles upon a woman whose car’s broken. She asks for help, and Jack unwillingly agrees to take her to Blacksmith. Through their conversation, Jack gives subtle hints of him being a murderer only for the woman to ignore.
Jack and the woman arrive at Blacksmith, and they do get the car fixed. Finally, Jack is relieved she is leaving, and he may go his own way, but again her car breaks midway. This turns Jack’s consciousness around and with much anger in his eyes, he picks up a tool and bludgeons the woman. He later stores her body in an industrial freezer inside a factory building that he owns.
The second murder sees Jack conning his way into the house of a widow, Claire. After posing as a cop and an insurance officer, he enters the house to strangle her. But doesn’t leave as he sees that the murder scene needs cleaning. He does it but also takes the responsibility of cleaning the house as well. Soon a cop with a report of robbing enters in, and Jack manages to fool him around. Thus taking the body of Claire driving around the city and back to the same freezer he owns. That’s when he starts calling him Mr. Sophistication and starts writing letters to the media.
The third incident sees Jack on a picnic with his new girlfriend and her two sons. The picnic turns violent when Jack tries to teach the boys rules of hunting. Eventually, killing both of them. He forces his girlfriend to feed her dead children and gives her a chance to run but eventually takes the shot. The fourth incident similar sees him with another girlfriend. But this time, he opens up about the murders and him being Mr. Sophistication. Initially taking it as a joke, but when Jack marks her breasts with a red marker. She becomes sure and contacts a policeman who takes her as drunk. Jack eventually kills her like he planned and throws away one breast into the police’s vehicle while the other he uses for a wallet.
The fifth incident sees him kidnapping six men with a single bullet but until one of the kidnapped men tells him he is using the wrong bullet. This eventually leads him to head out to a gunshop where the own suspects him and calls the police. On the other hand, he approaches his friend, who finds out about him. Leading Jack to kill him as well as the cop coming after him before returning to kill the six men.
What Do The Murders Tell About Jack?
One thing is for sure, Jack is a psychotic killer who kills for the fun of it. But more than that, from what we can see, the murders kind of represents the house we talked about. The one he tried to built but failed. In the same way, he becomes obsessed with killing and tries to top the previous kill by adding something different to the adventures. But the same way his house failed, he also goes weak on his killing spree. First went on to be a perfect murder. But the coming saw him making mistakes after mistakes.
For example, the second murder saw him spending time cleaning not only the murder scene but the entire house. He was of course, suffering from obsessive-compulsive disorder, but it almost led him to get caught. Also, it saw him driving the same body as Claire throughout the city. But it left bloodstains on road behind. Luckily the rain washed away the blood, saving him the first time. The fourth incident also saw him giving away his identity as he was drunk. Lastly, the fifth incident saw him picking up the wrong bullet.
Verge and Jack’s Journey To Hell Explained
Verge is the one who actually tells Jack about his dissatisfaction with the house. He reveals how he has always been there during the murders he did somewhere out there observing his sins. Now they have come to an end, and he wants Jack to build the house here to end this mayhem. So keeping in the check of the man, Jack builds the house with the dead bodies he collected over the years.
Once he is finished, a black hole appears in the middle of that dead body house. Entering upon it will take Jack on his journey to hell. Verge over here is basically a reference to Virgil The Roman Poet, the one who took Dante on the journey to hell and guided him. Verge over here is doing the same thing by taking Jack into hell as his sins have come to a limit. Now it’s time to pay them.
As Jack was about to jump into the hole, the cops arrive at the scene and shoot him from behind. In the real world of the movie, he might have died, but in the alternate world, his journey to Hell begins with Verge guiding him. The journey sees Jack trying to accomplish all the 9 stages of Purgatory. They come to the last stage with a broken bridge and lava running hot beneath it.
Verge declares this is the last stage of hell that lies beneath where Jack may meet Lucifer. As Jack agrees, his sights come to the front door on the other side of the bridge. Verge reveals to him that it is the door to heaven. So Jack tries his level best to climb his way to the other side. But ultimately fails and falls beneath to Hell. That’s all for the ending of The House That Jack Built. To relive the insight of the film, you can rewatch it on Hulu or internationally buy it on Amazon Prime.