“Wild Eyes and Wicked” is a 2024 film written and directed by Gordon Shoemaker Foxwood. It features a talented cast, including Colleen Camp as Genevieve, Molly Kunz as Lily Pierce, Stefanie Estes as Silvia, Michael X. Sommers as Gregory, and William Ford-Conway as Liam. The story revolves around Lily, a young woman haunted by strange dreams and visions ever since witnessing her mother’s tragic death. She believes she’s being shadowed by a monster intent on taking her life as well.

Wild Eyed and Wicked (2024) Plot Summary & Movie Synopsis:

“Wild Eyes and Wicked” kicks off with a disturbing flashback scene. In the middle of the night, young Lily stumbles upon her mother, standing alone in the garden. Curiosity piqued, Lily asks her mom why she’s out so late. Instead of an answer, her mother, with blood smeared across her face, sternly orders Lily to go back inside. Before Lily can react, her mom suddenly pulls out a gun and, in a shocking turn of events, shoots herself in the head. Lily witnesses the whole horrific incident, a trauma so intense that it continues to haunt her with terrifying visions to this day.

What is Going on in Lily’s Life?

Lily is also estranged from her dad and hasn’t spoken to him in years. Her father was a big-shot history professor at a prestigious university. He recently reached out to Lily, wanting to meet, but Lily’s not feeling it and is very anxious about saying yes. On another note, Lily is dating Willow, a high-spirited architect who shares her passion and curiosity for fencing. Lily really likes Willow, but when she learns that Willow has to move to another city for work, it makes her anxious. However, Lily is convinced this isn’t the end of their romantic affair and that Willow will be back soon.

A strange and devilish hand relentlessly follows Lily, haunting her wherever she goes. It’s the same sinister hand that tripped Lily when she tried to save her mother that fateful night. Fast forward to the present, and we see this eerie hand again, clutching Willow while she’s posing for a photo. The creepy part is that only Lily can see it. Lily realizes that this hand belongs to a monster her mother used to tell stories about. On top of that, Lily is a sleepwalker and often dreams about the night her mother died. This PTSD is seriously affecting her mental health and straining her relationship with Willow.

What Happens at Lily’s Family Home?

A few days before her mother’s 20th death anniversary, Lily gets a surprising call from her dad, Gregory, inviting her to spend the weekend with him. He’s finally ready to move on and plans to get rid of his wife’s belongings. But before doing so, he wants to know if Lily wants to keep any of her mother’s things. Since it’s about her mom, Lily agrees to visit. As mentioned earlier, Lily’s father used to be a history professor who spiraled into depression after his wife’s death. For years, he couldn’t accept that she was gone, leaving him unable to comfort or take care of Lily. This led to their estrangement, so Lily is often taken aback when she hears from him out of the blue.

Wild Eyed and Wicked (2024) Movie Ending Explained
A still from “Wild Eyed and Wicked” (2024)

Lily arrives at the house and even visits the spot where her mom took her life, this time with a gun in hand to protect herself from the monster she’s been seeing. During dinner, things get awkward when Lily brings up how her father used to neglect her and her mother. This makes Gregory regret inviting Lily, as he was hoping for a fresh start. However, Lily realizes her mistake and apologizes to Gregory the next morning, thanking him for cooking a nice dinner.

At night, Lily sleepwalks and has haunting dreams about her mother’s death and the monster. Gregory cares for her, but he doesn’t believe there’s a monster in the woods. He tries to explain this to Lily, but she insists that what she’s seeing is real. During their heated conversation, we learn that Gregory has colon cancer with only a 70 percent chance of survival. The tension escalates as it’s revealed that Lily’s mother, Sylvie, was cheating on Gregory with other men. Gregory knew about the affairs, which is why he was often absent when Lily needed him the most. That same night, convinced the monster has followed her to the house, Lily fires multiple shots into the woods.

Wild Eyed and Wicked (2024) Movie Ending Explained:

Did Lily Defeat the Monster?

Lily takes out her mother’s old books, only to find one with a torn-out page. When she asks Gregory about it, he reveals that Sylvie also believed in demons and had written multiple letters where she vented about her husband and Lily. The letters paint a grim picture, suggesting that Sylvia hated having Gregory around and saw him as weak. Sylvia was a TA whose exciting life took a drastic turn when she got pregnant with Gregory’s child and had to marry him. She always blamed Gregory for her boring and mundane life, harboring resentment towards him. This deep-seated hatred is evident in her letters.

One of the letters mentions that Sylvia regretted having Lily, which shatters Lily’s heart. When she shares this with her therapist, she is told that her mother might have been writing down her negative thoughts as a form of catharsis, planning to burn them later. But why didn’t Sylvia burn those letters? Maybe she intended to but never got the chance, as she took her own life before she could. Desperate to help his daughter, Gregory decides to teach Lily how to become a knight to defeat the monster. He knows that what Lily is seeing isn’t real but a figment of her imagination, a manifestation of the trauma she experienced when she witnessed her mother’s death. Despite this, he supports her, hoping it will help her cope with her inner demons.

After her training, Lily suits up in knight armor, mounts a horse, and heads into the woods to slay the monster. But does she defeat it? Despite her best efforts, it doesn’t work. In reality, there’s no monster—only the long-seared trauma of what Lily witnessed that night. Lily’s mother, Sylvia, had a history of mental illness and depression. She believed she could never truly love or be a good mother to Lily.

To spare Lily from this pain, Sylvia took her own life. This trauma has haunted Lily with strange dreams and visions throughout her childhood and into her adult life. In simple terms, the monster doesn’t exist; it’s a physical manifestation of Lily’s fear and past trauma. So, whoever Lily is fighting in the woods, it’s all in her head. In the nights that follow, Lily tries different tactics to defeat the monster, including using poisonous berries, but nothing works.

During the climactic fight, Gregory consumes the poison Lily prepared, so when the monster bites him, the poison will enter its bloodstream. As the poison takes effect, the monster stumbles, and Lily seizes the moment, plunging her steel into the monster’s heart. Towards the end, Lily also realizes that, despite her mother writing those hateful letters, she never truly meant any of it. Deep down, Sylvia always loved Lily. This brings Lily a sense of peace and closure, finally understanding how much Sylvie loved Lily despite struggling and being in pain.

Read More: The Strangers: Chapter 1 (2024) Movie Review & Ending Explained: Did They Escape the Masked Maniacs?

Trailer:

Wild Eyed and Wicked (2024) Movie Links: IMDb, Rotten Tomatoes, Letterboxd
Wild Eyed and Wicked (2024) Movie Cast: Molly Kunz, Michael X. Sommers, Colleen Camp, Stefanie Estes, Claire Saunders, William Ford-Conway, Evyn Flanders
Wild Eyed and Wicked (2024) Movie Genre: Fantasy/Horror/Drama/Mystery & Thriller | Runtime: 1h 39m

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