Lou ending explained: Do they find Vee? Who survives?

Lou ending explained: Allison Janney as Lou
Allison Janney as titular character Lou. (Image credit: Netflix)

Warning! Contains spoilers for Lou!

Lou is a new action drama movie starring Allison Janney and Jurnee Smollett, and fans all over have been tuning in to find out what happens when a little girl goes missing during a heavy rainstorm. 

It's every mother's worst nightmare, and Hannah (Smollett) is forced to team up with her next-door neighbor and landlady Lou (Janney) to brave the storm, head through town, and see if they can find out where Hannah's daughter Vee was taken.

But it's no easy task, and it turns out the weather is actually the least of their concerns when some dark secrets start to emerge, secrets that could change the course of their once normal, small-town lives forever.

With plenty of twists and turns along the way, we're going to dive into Lou's ending and what it means for some of the characters.

So if you want a Lou ending explained, read on to find out everything you need to know about the Netflix movie and how things played out...

Lou ending explained: Did Lou and Hannah find Vee?

Lou and Hannah lying down and spying on a nearby house

Lou and Hannah battled the elements in search of Vee. (Image credit: Netflix)

At the beginning of the movie, Vee was taken during a power outage while Hannah tried to flip the circuit breaker, and she quickly released that it was Vee's father Philip who had taken her away.

In a panic, Hannah rushed over to Lou's house, trying to call the sheriff on her house phone, but due to the storm there was too much disruption and the lines were down. As a result of this and worrying Vee might be in danger, Lou agreed to help Hannah find her.

After a difficult search, Philip and Vee were eventually tracked down, with Lou and Hannah following the pair to the lighthouse in Eagle Bay to meet up and negotiate to get Vee back safely. 

But it soon becomes clear Philip actually has some surprising connections to Lou that are revealed in a dramatic fashion as he plans to blow up the lighthouse, killing Lou, Hannah and Vee.

Lou had managed to disarm the bomb so the lighthouse was no longer a threat, but that didn't stop an equally as huge bombshell from dropping when we found out the truth about her.

How is Lou connected to Vee and Philip?

It was revealed that Lou isn't just a neighbor and landlady, she's actually far more involved than we first thought. Philip is Lou's son, meaning Vee is her granddaughter and has tried to protect Hannah and Vee from Philip, knowing what he's like.

In fact, it was Lou who got Hannah’s college friends to encourage Hannah to move to the island so Lou could keep an eye on her, and she's had her best interests at heart this whole time, despite outwardly appearing like a disapproving landlady.

Philip had plans to kill his entire family, which is why he used Vee to get them all in the same place at the same time, but this isn't really explored why only that we know he's a disturbed individual and perhaps felt the only way they could be reunited was in death.

Philip holding Vee in his arms

Philip had some sinister plans for his family. (Image credit: Netflix)

Lou's got her own personal demons too, as it was revealed that when Philip was a boy, he was kidnapped and Lou let it happen, choosing the CIA over her own son. She was part of the 1953 Iranian coup d’état and then took documents to blackmail the CIA later so she'd be left alone.

Now, the CIA considers both Lou and Philip to be fugitives. Philip is considered a fugitive because he is wanted in connection with several civilian murders after serving in the army, making them both troubled individuals.

Who survived at the end of the movie?

During the climax of the movie, the CIA locate Philip and Lou at the lighthouse, where the two are having a fight while Hannah and Vee run off to safety. Philip stabbed Lou, with the latter using her son as a shield while the CIA helicopter opened fire.

We see them falling into the water, seemingly dead, before catching up with Hannah and Vee who've got their own surprises in store when they release Lou left her house and possessions to her granddaughter and daughter-in-law, so they could sell up and earn some money for a fresh start.

Hannah, Vee and Jax looking out on the water

Hannah, Vee and Jax the dog take a boat trip to Seattle for a fresh start. (Image credit: Netflix)

The mother and daughter then take Lou's beloved dog Jax and move away from the remote community, to Seattle, Washington, and it seems like they've finally found peace away from Philip.

But there's one more surprise in store. It turns out Lou survived the fight, and the camera pans out to reveal her watching the pair through binoculars as they leave on the boat, suggesting she's still watching over them.

Lou watches through binoculars

She's alive! Lou keeps an eye on her granddaughter and daughter-in-law. (Image credit: Netflix)

However, it's strongly implied that Philip died at the hands of the CIA, so his story is over and it means that Lou, Hannah and Vee won't be harassed by him any longer, so hopefully, they can all live a much more peaceful life.

While the film has some dark themes and tense fights, it actually ends on a happy note and rounds things off nicely!

Lucy Buglass
Senior Staff Writer

Lucy joined the WhatToWatch.com team in 2021, where she writes series guides for must-watch programmes, reviews and the latest TV news. Originally from Northumberland, she graduated from Oxford Brookes University with a degree in Film Studies and moved to London to begin a career writing about entertainment.

She is a Rotten Tomatoes approved film critic and has a huge passion for cinema. She especially loves horror, thriller and anything crime-related. Her favourite TV programmes include Inside No 9, American Horror Story, Stranger Things and Black Mirror but she is also partial to a quiz show or a bit of Say Yes to the Dress