Warning: SPOILERS for The Woman in the Window are ahead.
The release of The Woman in the Window has been, quite literally, years in the making. The Netflix film, which stars Amy Adams as agoraphobic psychologist Dr. Anna Fox, is based on a 2018 novel of the same name by A.J. Finn (the pseudonym of Dan Mallory).
The film went into production in the same year that the book debuted, but there were numerous delays along the way that led to a 2021 premiere date.
The coronavirus pandemic contributed to one setback, but the first delay happened because the original ending proved to be too confusing for test audiences.
The Woman in the Window was re-edited to make the ending clearer, but some viewers are still perplexed.
'The Woman in the Window' ending explained — what happens to Anna?
At the beginning of the film, viewers learn that Anna has not been able to venture outside of her New York City apartment due to her agoraphobia. She, therefore, spends a lot of time looking out her expansive windows, and calling her husband, Ed (Anthony Mackie), and her daughter, Olivia (Mariah Bozeman).
On one particular day, Anna watches as a family from Boston moves in across the street. She later meets the teenage son, Ethan Russell (Fred Hechinger), and a woman she believes is his mom, Jane Russell (Julianne Moore).
Shortly after she spends a wine-fueled evening with "Jane," Anna sees her get murdered. Though Anna attempts to tell the authorities about it, including Detective Little (Brian Tyree Henry), nobody takes her seriously.
After all, the real Jane Russell (Jennifer Jason Leigh) is alive and fine, but Anna is convinced that someone is covering up the truth. Because she doesn't know the real name of the woman she spent a night with, she can't take her suspicions any further.
As the film progresses, Anna leans on her tenant, David (Wyatt Russell) for support, though she later finds out that he had a criminal record prior to him moving in.
Because he had done work for the Russell family in their apartment, Anna suspects that David could have been involved in killing "Jane."
However, in the final part of The Woman in the Window, she discovers that "Jane" can be seen in the reflection of a wine glass in a photo that Anna took of her cat during their wine night.
When she shows David, he shares that he had a one night stand with "Jane," and that her real name is actually Katie. He also reveals that Katie is Ethan's birth mom, who had recently re-entered the teen's life after struggling with addiction during his childhood.
Anna makes a final plea for David to help her, but he storms out. The laptop with the photo of Katie then falls over and breaks, meaning that Anna has lost all of her proof.
Ethan then enters Anna's apartment holding one of her knives, which he says he used to kill David. He confesses to killing his birth mom, and he tells Anna that she is going to be his next victim.
The teen also admits that his family had to move to New York because he had killed someone in Boston as well. His father and his stepmother had helped him cover up the crime.
Ethan tries to drug his neighbor, but she attempts to hit him with a wine bottle instead. He follows her to her rooftop and he stabs her in the face with a gardening tool. Anna brings him over to her loose skylight, and Ethan falls down to his death.
Anna passes out, and she later wakes up in a hospital room. Detective Little is there, and he apologizes to the child psychologist for doubting her. He shares that the Russell parents are in custody because they covered up Ethan's first murder.
The final moments of the film take place nine months after Anna's hospitalization. She has moved out of her apartment, and she has her agoraphobia under control.
What happened to Anna's family in 'The Woman in the Window?'
The first big twist in The Woman in the Window takes place before the chaotic conclusion. Though Anna is often seen speaking to her husband, Ed, and her daughter, Olivia, Detective Little reveals that they've been dead for over a year.
The two died when Anna drove a car off a cliff during a family vacation. Ed had just learned that Anna had been cheating on him, and they were fighting over Anna's cell phone when the vehicle veered off the road.
The incident sparked Anna's agoraphobia, and she coped by pretending that her family members were still alive. It's also one of the main reasons why the authorities didn't trust her when she reported the murder at the Russells' apartment.
The Woman in the Window is available to stream on Netflix now.