Charlize Theron in Tully
[Image: Focus Features]

WARNING: There are huge SPOILERS ahead for the ending of Tully. If you haven’t watched the comedy drama yet then proceed at your own risk. 

It’s not until right at the end of “Tully” that you really understand what the film is trying to get across. 

After a boozy night out in Brooklyn alongside her night nanny Tully (Mackenzie Davis), Marlo (Charlize Theron) falls asleep at the wheel and crashes her car into a river. Miraculously she escapes, as Tully unfastens her seatbelt in the submerged car, and Marlo wakes up in the hospital.

At this point, the doctors explain to Marlo’s husband Drew (Ron Livingston) that she is exhausted and is in midst of postpartum depression.


When asked for Marlo’s maiden name by a nurse Drew reveals that it is Tully. This immediately makes viewers realize that Mackenzie Davis’ character has been a figment of Marlo’s imagination, and is in fact her younger self. 

Seeing how strained Marlo is, Drew vows to be a better husband and father, communicate more and work alongside her to raise their kids. Which at least means that “Tully” has a happy ending. 

Last month I had the chance to speak to Mackenzie Davis about “Tully.”

Of course, Davis was wary about talking about the ending, but I vowed to blazon the piece with SPOILER WARNINGS, which meant that she was happy to open up about building the film to such a surprising and though-provoking conclusion. 

“We were definitely concerned and careful and wanted to handle it correctly. But I really trusted Jason and he knew exactly what he was doing.”

“At times I would say, ‘Should it be more like this? Or more like this?’ And he had a really clear vision for the movie and he handled it so beautifully. And it was so nice to under the direction of someone who knows exactly how it should be.”

“It was such a lovely feeling. Not in a dictatorial sense, but just being with someone who has a strong sense of the movie they are making. They are not just making it up as they go along."

"They know the story they are telling and how to tell it and it is a lovely feeling as an actor to work with somebody that knows what they are doing and why.”

I then asked Davis whether playing a younger version of Theron impacted her approach to the character and her performance. 

“I definitely thought about that a lot. And wondered if that wasn’t happening enough.”

“And then it just sort of settled into this place where it was about this relationship with these two women and the realer and more connected this relationship was the more authentically the story was told.”

“Any of the other sort of bells and whistles didn’t matter as much as, ‘I am here with you. Let’s listen to each other’.”

“Tully” is now in cinemas. 

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