Talk To Me Ending Explained (What Happened To Mia & Riley)

Talk To Me is a 2022 horror movie directed by the YouTube duo Danny and Michael Philippou. The film is centred on a mysterious hand sculpture which can conjure spirits. A group of teens decide to have a bit of morbid fun, and as one can expect, things go horribly wrong. It’s an exciting film with an unexpected conclusion. Do check it out. Here’s the plot and ending of Talk To Me explained; spoilers ahead.

In this episode of the Film Exploder podcast we analyse Talk To Me, check it out:

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Here are links to the key aspects of the movie:

Talk To Me Explained In Short

The plot follows a girl, Mia, who has lost her mother to suicide. She volunteers for a supernatural trip where she holds an embalmed hand and says, “Talk to me”. Once she does, she sees a random ghost and then says, “I let you in”, which allows the spirit to possess her. She can safely be possessed for 90 seconds, after which there is the risk of her being haunted. She goes over the 90-second mark as the group struggles to get her off the hand.

The group has another party at Mia’s friend Jade’s house. Jade’s little brother Riley wants to give it a go. Jade disapproves, but Mia allows it. Riley seemingly gets possessed by Mia’s mother, and she lets Riley stay possessed for too long. Riley starts bashing his head on the table and wall and is brutally injured.

Mia begins to be haunted by an entity that takes on the shape of her mother and convinces her to kill Riley as he’s suffering. Before she can take his life, Mia realizes that she’s being tricked by the ghosts and it will never stop, so she kills herself only to become a lost spirit that answers to “Talk to me” by some other random group. However, Riley is saved.

Talk To Me: Frequently Asked Questions Explained

Talk To Me What's written on the hand?

What is the hand?

The hand is said to be an actual embalmed hand of a psychic who could communicate with spirits. Somehow, this person’s hand was preserved and passed on from one person to another person over a long period of time.

What’s written on the hand?

You can see various random words in multiple languages on the hand. These are what each of the many owners have scribbled on it, just like the writings on a cast. We don’t know the origins of the hand, but we do know that it has been in various parts of the world.

Talk To Me: What happened to Mia’s mom? How did the mom die?

Mia’s mother overdosed on sleeping pills. Mia’s dad did not kill her. She does try to call for help once she realizes her terrible decision, but the dad is sleeping in the living room. Mia’s mom dies scratching the door, and that’s why she was found dead with pieces of the door under her nails.

The mom left a suicide note stating clearly that she decided to end her life, and the dad hid this from Mia to save her some pain. There would have been an investigation, where the dad would have been the prime suspect and he wasn’t found guilty. Unfortunately, Mia suspects her dad is guilty because of the pieces of the door on the mom’s nails. And once the spirits start haunting Mia, they convince her that her dad killed her mother.

What did Riley see?

When Riley touches the hand for the first time, he sees a random ghost and not necessarily Mia’s mother. The ghosts start manipulating someone only when they begin haunting that person when they have an extended link. Riley looks at Mia before saying, “I let you in”. This is because he’s scared looking at a ghost and looks to Mia for comfort; he doesn’t know anyone else in the room at that point as his sister is not in the room.

Talk To Me: What happened to Riley? 

Riley is possessed by a violent spirit, and he bashes his head on furniture. They pull the hand away from him but don’t blow out the candle. This leaves the connection open to him. In the hospital, when Riley gains consciousness, the possession continues, and he further smashes his head.

Mia later gets an unconscious Riley to hold the hand, and this time, she blows the candle out, closing the connection. After this, a few days later, Jade even mentions that Riley is better and is talking normally. However, the spirits project a false image for Mia, showing Riley in utter pain. This is a lie. Only Mia sees a hideous, ghostly face on Riley, but in reality, he’s getting better.

Does Riley survive?

Yes, Riley survives. In the end, we see glimpses of Riley having recovered completely and talking to his family as they prepare to discharge him from the hospital.

Why did they want Riley?

Perhaps Riley is very young and easily to control, making him a low-hanging target for the spirits, who are looking to claim more souls.

Why was Mia possessed?

Mia was haunted for two reasons. The first time, she ends up being possessed for more than 90 seconds, allowing the spirits to haunt her. Then she goes on to light a candle on her own and talk to a ghost that takes the form of her mother, and this time, she doesn’t blow out the candle, keeping the connection open.

Talk To Me Ending Explained: What happened to Mia? How did Mia die?

The ending of Talk To Me leaves the question “Does Mia die?” in everyone’s mind, and the answer is yes; Mia dies because she gets hit by a car on the freeway and is now a lost spirit who answers to a stranger holding ‘the hand’. 

This leads us to the next pressing question…

Did Jade push Mia?

No, Jade does not push Mia in the ending of Talk To Me. Mia, who is going to push Riley onto the road, chooses to stop. We see her taking her hands off the wheelchair. Next, we know she jumps onto a moving car and gets killed. Mia was behind the wheelchair; Jade could not have pushed her from there onto the traffic unless she grabbed her arm and swung her around WWE style. Besides, let’s give Mia’s character some credit. She’s a strong-willed girl who cares for Riley. Everything she’s doing is in the belief that she’s saving his soul.

Why did Mia kill herself?

In the ending of Talk To Me, Mia kills herself because she realizes the spirit beside her is not her mother. It’s an evil spirit in disguise deceiving her into killing Riley. She realizes they will never stop, so she sacrifices herself to save Riley. And this is why she lets go of the wheelchair. The spirit says, “We will have him forever”, making Mia realize she will doom Riley.

Remember Cole’s brother Duckett, who also saw ghosts without the hand, tried killing Cole and eventually killed himself? It appears he, too, was being coaxed by the spirits to kill his brother. Duckett he tries to stab and kill Cole (just like Mia tries to kill her dad) after that, Duckett kills himself. He takes his life so he’s not a threat to the people he loves anymore.

Talk To Me Kangaroo Meaning Explained

The dying kangaroo on the road foreshadows Mia’s understanding of who is suffering and who needs to be put out of their misery. She is metaphorically the suffering kangaroo and is also a threat to others, so she ends her life. The repeated vision of the bleeding kangaroo signifies just this.

Earlier in the movie, Mia sees a hurt Kangaroo on the road. Mia can’t get herself to kill the kangaroo and end its suffering. Later, being possessed, the evil spirits convince her that Riley is suffering (much like the kangaroo), and she thinks she needs to kill him – hence her choice of death by being hit by a vehicle. In the final moments, Mia realizes the spirits are tricking her and that she is the one suffering and ends her life instead.

What were your thoughts on the plot and ending of Talk To Me? Do drop your theories in the comments below, and let’s discuss.

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