Oxygen ending explained: Does Liz survive?

Netflix’s single-location sci-fi movie, ‘Oxygen’ starring Mélanie Laurent, is about a woman entrapped in a futuristic pod — a cryogenic chamber, from which she suffers to exit and the only key lies in her lost memories.

The movie starts off with a woman who wakes up in a cryogenic pod that is running out of oxygen. She desperately tries to remember how she got in there or who she is, in the first place, and how she can get out before running out of air, but isn’t able to recall anything. 

With the help of MILO, the chamber’s ultra-advanced A.I. companion, she attempts various frantic methods, from calling to sifting through social media, to gather her memories or make contact with someone who can help her pave the way out of the pod before asphyxiating to death.

Through time she gradually recovers bits of her memories and finds out that she is Dr Elizabeth Hansen, a scientist who deals with cryogenics. She figures out that her husband Leo Ferguson might lead her to the key of escaping the pod. 

With many twisting turns to the tale, the pod’s oxygen level turns critical, but she is still stuck in the pod, that is in outer space on a mission to start human life on Wolf 10-61c.

So how does she end up surviving with the oxygen running out quickly? Does human life reach Wolf 10-61c? 

‘Oxygen’ ending explained in detail:

Not the only pod out in space

As Omicron-267, or Liz, starts to lose hope in survival and resorts to opening the pod, aware of the impending decompression, she is reminded of her last memories of Leo and rejuvenates into finding his pod as a way for existence and aborts the unlocking.

As she discovers that she was not the only bioform on the mission and asks MILO to give the information and visuals of the rest of the cryogenic units, she witnesses the existence of over 10,000 Omicron units in space, miles across from Earth. 

With this she resorts to searching up Leo’s cryogenic pod, all with an oxygen level critical at 5%, meaning she doesn’t have much time left.

She then remembers Leo’s unit number as 42 and finally finds it too. Through MILO’s visual of Leo as a bioform, she notices that his scar is absent.

Nerve-wracking existential crisis

With her noticing that Leo’s scar is absent on his bioform, Liz becomes doubtful about the true biological identities of the bioforms inside the pods and returns to searching Dr Hansen’s profile.

She discovers a video of Dr Hansen explaining her discovery of memory transfer, and in this video, Omicron-267 notices that Dr Hansen is pretty old.

She then runs a voice recognition test on the woman who had called her to offer help, and it then dawns upon her that the real Dr Hansen was out there on Earth and she was just a genetic clone.

She then falls into an existential crisis and lets down hopes of survival completely. Liz then proceeds to record a final message for Leo.

Back to square one

As Liz struggles to keep herself motivated to stay alive, the depleting oxygen level doesn’t help. At 3%, the cryogenic pod activates itself to give her a CEP, or euthanasia. 

She struggles to stop the pod from performing euthanasia on her and in this process ends up removing all the wires that connect her, the bioform, to the pod. 

The only key to her survival is her going back to the hypersleep mode and then resuscitation, all within 2% of oxygen balance. This solution is interrupted by Liz’s previous disconnection of wires. 

Liz then pains herself to connect all the wiring back into her body. By the time she finishes up this process, she is left with minimal oxygen that is not enough for her to survive resuscitation according to MILO.

As things don’t end up in her favour once again, she ends the recording for Leo and bids goodbye. 

As the tables turn, it then dawns upon her about the remaining oxygen left in the other lost units. She then asks MILO to redirect all the lost units’ oxygen to her pod, which MILO estimates to take 14,277 minutes. 

The final solution to the long process is then shown to be Liz going back into the hypersleep mode while MILO transfers the oxygen, requisite for her resuscitation.

As for a happy ending, the final scene cuts into Leo and Liz on Wolf10-61c, alive and happy in each other’s company, depicting the success of the operation and the survival of the bioforms.

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