In Nikyatu Jusu‘s “Nanny,” a sleeping Aisha is enveloped by waves, and the visage of a spider skitters across her cheek as night descends. Though it may appear to be an ordinary narrative on initial inspection, this story – which follows an African immigrant who seeks out the American dream in America – won big at the 2020 Sundance Film Festival Grand Jury Prize and has since been praised for its captivating brilliance.
The depths of the water beneath us continue to astound. Like in a recurring dream, Aisha confronts her version of white privilege and capitalism as she strives for success. Jusu’s “Nanny” is another triumph in an already triumphant year for horror movies such as “Barbarian,” “Smile” & “Terrifier 2.”
Jusu has pushed the boundaries of storytelling with their ambitious endeavour to bring magical realism and West African horror folklore together in “Nanny.” This article provides a detailed interpretation of the ending. Though it may appear at first glance that this is merely another noble-yet-one dimensional tale of oppression, there’s so much more than meets the eye. Keep reading to understand “Nanny” more thoroughly!
Nanny Plot Synopsis
On Aisha’s inaugural day as a nanny, she was both anxious and ecstatic. Amy — the mom — showed her around their residence with ease. Their quick bond made Rose feel peace about leaving her daughter in Aisha’s care. It left us wondering why most of this couple’s employees were people of colour, mainly since Adam, Amy’s husband is an African photographer who spends considerable time on his projects there!
Aisha’s home office was decorated with African American photos, which became her source of joy after she relocated. Despite leaving to provide a better life for her child, the long-distance phone calls only intensified the sorrow of being separated. Aisha may have been living in Senegal, but her heart remained thousands of miles away from him. To make matters worse, she found out Amy had failed to pay for the extra hours worked – making it harder to stay connected and remain optimistic about their prospects.
Aisha was baffled as to why her wealthy employers kept delaying paying what they owed instead of settling the debt immediately. She had a tight timeline to raise money and get her son home, yet these rich people were too busy fussing over their issues. That’s when Malik stepped in – Aisha met him while he worked at the building front desk and became friends despite being doubtful at first, but she eventually decided that it might be worth taking a risk by allowing herself to love someone again.
Aisha’s visions were perplexing and seemed to be centred around water. As these dreams intensified, she began experiencing out-of-body experiences and sensed a presence. Before their first date, Aisha was introduced to his grandmother, who promised answers for her unexplained images. Astonishingly, all roads led back to Mami Wata – what could this mysterious figure mean? Where did Aisha’s dreamscapes lead & why had they become so frequent?
Nanny Ending Explained
Aisha made the bold choice to move from her home country of New York to provide a better life for her son Lamine, who was too young for his father to care for. She worked tirelessly and protested against years of underpayment, believing that if she could make it big enough, she would be able to acquire him soon. Although Aisha put most of her savings into buying tickets firstly for her toddler and cousin, the thought still lingered when they were late – so much that despite being desperate with anticipation, she chose not to call up Lamine at the terminal. Little did anyone know, but this decision would ultimately prove fatal: upon inquiring about what happened., tragedy struck as news broke out revealing that Lamine had perished during their travel.
The news hit Aisha hard – her son had died while fighting for overtime. Overwhelmed with grief and believing justice was impossible to obtain, she attempted suicide by nearly drowning in the surf. Mami Wata appeared again and, this time, rescued Aisha from certain death. EMS found her pregnant on shore, and upon returning home, she began adjusting to life with Malik and their unborn child. However, the plea of Mami Wata eluded her due to a series of mysterious dreams about mythological creatures. It wasn’t until Malik’s grandmother advised that she started looking into what Mami Wata wanted, prompting Aisha to focus on the creature’s needs instead of just her desires or expectations.
Lamine’s truth gave Aisha much-needed clarity. Mami Wata’s untimely arrival at the performance that killed her child initially devastated Aisha, yet, this mythical sea creature told her not to be afraid and later rescued her from a life of loneliness, offering support and purpose after she lost Lamine. Despite the hardships she still faces, pregnancy gives Aisha newfound energy and meaning in her otherwise bleak circumstances–and with it, she appreciates having loved ones by her side every step of the way.