Look Both Ways Movie Ending, Explained


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Starring Riverdale actor Lili Reinhart with Danny Ramirez and Aisha Dee, Look Both Ways is directed by Wanuri Kahiu (Rafiki). While I wish the new Netflix Original was a little more engaging, it still has a slightly different narrative than the usual rom-com dramas that deal with unwanted pregnancies and life choices.

Look Both Ways Plot Summary and Movie Synopsis:

The film revolves around Natalie, an aspiring artist who wants to become an animation filmmaker. She dreams of living a life in Los Angeles, California, working with the best animation studios (thanks to her 5-year plan!). However, overwhelmed by emotions and her plans slowly coming to fruition, she chooses to sleep with her friend Gabe (Danny Ramirez).

On the eve of her graduation party, she finds herself in a dilemma when her best friend, Cara (Aisha Dee), offers to take her for a pregnancy test. It’s here that we see Natalie’s life diverge into parallel realities after passing the test, which shows the consequence of two versions of her life decisions.

One side of her life shows her deciding to embrace womanhood (becoming a young mother) as she bids farewell to her five-year plan and life in Los Angeles as an animator. The Other Side explores his hopes and longing for having worked hard for many years as his life comes full circle in the city of his dreams.

What works for me about the film is that director Wanuri Kahiu, along with writer April Prosser, didn’t try to outsmart the audience while exploring pressing issues among young adults these days. There are a plethora of movies that have explored the theme of adopting motherhood at a young age. However, the Netflix film Look Both Ways also addressed postpartum depression and the existential crisis of being a young mother; while simultaneously trying to find a voice as an artist. And I have to say he did a great job doing that.

In the following article, I tried to break down Natalie’s life into two different versions; leading to the realization of which of these is its reality. Know that the article contains spoilers from now on.

Story 1: Natalie is in Austen, Texas, dealing with new priorities in her life

Natalie shares the news of her pregnancy with Gabe right after the party. Gabe tells him that it’s his choice to make and that he doesn’t wish to run away from the situation because it affects him too. Instead, he supports her with whatever she decides to choose.

We all know that confronting your parents with such a dire circumstance is no easy task, so when Natalie shares the news with her parents, they lay out the obvious facts of how quickly things will change in her life. However, after freaking out as overly caring parents trying to protect their only daughter from making rash decisions, they eventually come to understand and support Natalie with her choices.

Look both ways. Left to right: Lili Reinhart as Natalie, Luke Wilson as Rick, Danny Ramirez as Gabe and Andrea Savage as Tina. cr. Felicia Graham/Netflix © 2022

Natalie is sad because her life is at a crossroads. While talking to her friend, Cara, she shares that it’s hard for her to process the new changes as she watches her friend embark on the journey they were meant to take together.

After the birth of her baby, Natalie falls back into postpartum depression. At the same time, her relationship with Gabe, who she co-parented Rosie with, also begins to crumble as they move in a different direction of life.

Narrative 2: Natalie is in LA, California managing to manifest her life

Relieved that she’s not pregnant, Natalie moves on as she prepares for the next phase of her life – Los Angeles. As they pass the main attractions of their dream city, everything seems unreal for Natalie and her best friend, Cara.

Upon their arrival, Natalie’s initial plan is to find a job to support herself in town. Cara pushes her to send applications everywhere. By chance, she receives a phone call and lands a job as an assistant with her favorite animator, Lucy Galloway.

During this time, she also starts dating a cute guy, Jake (David Corenwet), who works in the same office. Things start to form perfectly until the day she gets fired, and at the same time; her boyfriend leaves for a shoot in a remote place in the country.

The pressure of following a long-distance relationship does not sit well with her. Consequently, she breaks up with Jake. Discouraged by the current phase of time and the lack of inspiration in a city that radiates new talent and fierce competition, Natalie begins to search for her voice as an animator. She returns to her parents, hoping things will change for the better.

How does everything change for Natalie when she discovers herself?

In both timelines, things start to move when she returns to drawing. After reassessing her thoughts and ideas, she begins to work day and night to achieve her dreams. She submits her project to the SXSW film festival and is nominated in the panel.

In the first timeline, we see Natalie as a stubborn 22-year-old single mother who wants to get things right in her life. Even though things didn’t go the way she imagined in her five-year plan, she is strong-willed, in control, and at peace with the ever-changing course of her circumstances. Natalie is also very logical and understands that not everything has to go according to her plans.

However, Natalie in the second timeline is completely oblivious to how things may fit into your plans. She is emotional and lost as she tangles with the uncertainties of life. She finds it difficult to adapt to the new changes and believes that fate will push her to find the next moment in life.

Look both ways. Left to right: Lili Reinhart as Natalie and David Corenswet as Jake. cr. Felicia Graham/Netflix © 2022

In the first timeline, Natalie, her family, and Cara go to the nearby bar to celebrate the accomplishments of her project. She meets Gabe, who is also performing at the festival. Natalie shares her true feelings about Gabe after learning he’s no longer married. Natalie and Gabe kiss as things take shape for good at this point in their lives.

Meanwhile, we see Natalie meet Jake outside the festival theater, and he apologizes for everything that happened in Los Angeles. Things turn favorable for them as they kiss. After the screening of her short film, Natalie meets her former boss, Lucy, who invites her into the office for a more in-depth discussion about her career.

Look Both Ways Movie Ending, Explained:

As Natalie kept reinventing herself with the ups and downs of life, things are finally shaping up for her on both sides. She’s a great mom, has a great future as an entertainer, and has an understanding partner by her side who makes her life perfect. As Natalie returns to her college arena with her partner (of both timelines), she decides to enter the dorm one last time.

In the next moment, we see the two Natalies standing together against the mirror of the same restroom. They look behind them at the toilet seat (where she took her pregnancy test) and smile. Turning back to the mirror, the two say – You’re fine, indicating that everything is fine no matter what she chooses to do with her life.

At the end, we’re back in the first scene with Natalie holding the pregnancy test in her hand, staring straight into the camera – as Natalie from the parallel timelines walks away from the college dorms down two different paths, content with their decisions. .

Read more: Royalteen (2022) Netflix Review: An Engaging Romantic Drama Despite Teen Drama Tropes

Trailer Look Both Ways

Look Both Ways (2022) Movie Links – IMDb, rotten tomatoes
Look Both Ways (2022) Movie Cast – Lili Reinhart, Danny Ramirez, Aisha Dee, David Corenswet, Luke Wilson, Andrea Savage
Where to watch Look Two Ways

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