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'The Father Who Moves Mountains' Ending, Explained: Let's Discuss

The Father Who Moved Mountains Tata Muta Muntii Mircea Adrian Titieni Netflix
Netflix

“The Father Who Moves Mountains” (“Tata Muta Muntii”) is a Romanian film currently streaming on Netflix that boils down to its ending. How you feel about the way it concludes comes to color everything else that came before it. With that said, this review will delve into how good the movie is and how the ending impacts it.

[[If you want to learn the ending spoilers for “The Father Who Moves Mountains,” scroll down or use CTRL+F to search “the ending,” and you will find it.]]

Should you watch the movie? If you have not yet watched it, there is something you need to know. “The Father Who Moves Mountains” is best categorized as a drama rather than as a thriller or a tale of suspense. The movie opens with Mircea (Adrian Titieni) and his second wife, pregnant with their first child. There is tension in the relationship due to Mircea’s distracted state of mind. 

The couple is preparing for their new baby while also dealing with a house renovation. Already on edge, Mircea gets a dreadful call. His son from his first marriage has gone missing on a mountain during a hike with his girlfriend. The young couple is now missing, and Mircea makes a mad dash to find them. He is about to prove if he is “The Father Who Moves Mountains.”

The Review

At this point, the movie is very engaging, and as Mircea’s first wife and the mother of his missing son arrives, the tension gets ratcheted up on an interpersonal level. Mircea’s affair and disregard for his first family breathe into every decision he makes, and to his credit, he does feel guilt and remorse for his actions. It is these two emotions that color everything that happens next.

Clearly not familiar with the Dyatlov Pass Incident, Mircea is exceedingly confident that he can find his son alive. If you think you are in for a survival film akin to “Frozen,” prepare yourself. This is about the people the survivors in the survival subgenre tend not to show – the loved ones left behind. To its credit, “The Father Who Moves Mountains” moves the story along nicely.

There is a sense of urgency that keeps the movie from growing stagnant in unnecessarily artful shots. The film is clearly working to tell a morality tale about a father who wants to do too little, too late. He has ignored his son in favor of his own selfish desires, and it plagues him. (At least, some characters can express guilt these days.)

Mircea has taken for granted that he could always connect with him, only to learn life can get in the way. There is a good story here. It is well-directed by Daniel Sandu, and the acting strikes as poignantly authentic. In the end, it all comes down to that conclusion as it threatens to undo all of the seeds sewn during 90% of the movie. Now to the spoilers.

[[Spoilers for the ending of “The Father Who Moves Mountains” get discussed beyond this point. So, if you do not want to know, please stop reading now.]]

The Ending

If you watch the trailer beforehand, you can probably sense how “The Father Who Moves Mountains” will end. Of course, this viewer went into it having already watched Netflix’s teaser and still got caught up in the chance that Mircea’s son would get rescued. As you can tell from that statement, the ending does not see such a rosy conclusion. 

Mircea never finds his son nor his son’s girlfriend alive. The intelligence agency that owes Mircea a favor does manage to locate the young couple’s cell phones and narrow down the search. However, it is clear they perished with their bodies covered by tons of snow. Instead of waiting for spring to naturally reveal their whereabouts, Mircea presses through with a recovery mission.

When the mountain’s rescue team and members of the intelligence agency almost die in an avalanche, they call it quits on trying to recover the couple during the winter. Mircea is not pleased and goes about recruiting people to help him search. Soon the hotel cuts off his lift privileges, and he has a huge fight with his still heavily pregnant second wife, Alina.

She pleads with him to cease the search and return home to focus on his new family. Mircea refuses and sells the house they have been renovating. Eventually, Alina forgives him and joins Mircea on the mountain staying with him at the resort. Mircea remains consumed with recovering his son’s body and is out digging at the rescue site when a call comes over the radio.

Ending Scene, Explained

Another person goes missing on the mountain, and Mircea lets the guys he recruited go to help in rescuing them. All alone, he continues digging. Soon Mircea’s right-hand man calls in over the radio, saying they have found the missing person. Mircea seems pleased to hear that and continues digging for his son. “The Father Who Moves Mountains” continues to do so in the search for his son.

Instead of moving mountains through political means, he is literally moving snow on the mountain to find his son. While he continues to try to find him, his first wife Paula returns home. Before the ending scene, she leaves the mountain, planning to return in the spring and urging Mircea to do the same. She also absolves him of abandoning her and their son.

Paula explains that she forgave him long ago and wants him to forgive himself. The latter will prove impossible. With its ending, “The Father Who Moves Mountains” proves that it has not been about a father overcoming the odds to find his son when everyone thought it impossible. It is about a man’s grief over failing his first family and his tireless effort to make it right.

Unfortunately for Mircea, his efforts are in vain for his eldest child. The consequences are felt by almost everyone. In Mircea’s case, the finality rocks him, leading him to distract himself with the search for his son’s body. Alina, who apparently helped break up Mircea’s marriage, also feels the ramifications. Mircea will be absent from her until he finds what he is looking for.

Is “The Father Who Moves Mountains” Worth Watching?

It is if you can accept open endings. While it is obvious that Mircea’s son and his son’s girlfriend are dead, their bodies are not recovered. For those who need that closure, “The Father Who Moves Mountains” will not leave you with it. If you go in to soak the movie up as a character drama, then you should find it a moving meditation on guilt, forgiveness, and family.

In a side note for those wondering, Mircea is a former intelligence agent, per IMDb. Hence, his ties to the organization and ability to call in a favor. If you are like me, you might have been confused by the source of Mircea’s power and his job, for that matter. So, hopefully, this clears that up.

“The Father Who Moves Mountains” is currently streaming on Netflix alongside lots of suspenseful dramas. If you want some suggestions, you can peruse this category.

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