‘Closer’ Ending Explained: What Was Alice Real Name?

Closer Ending

Welcome to the Ending Explained for ‘Closer,’ a 2004 movie directed by Mike Nichols, based on the play of the same name written by Patrick Marber. Nichols’ second-to-last film has become quite a classic in the last 20 years thanks to the amazing performances by Clive Owen, Natalie Portman, Jude Law, and Julia Roberts. The film really shows how Nichols managed, better than most directors of his time, to go inside the psyche of the characters and how to make them feel real and beyond human. The film could be categorized as extremely overdramatic, but it never falls into that territory.

The film knows how to balance the line between being a complete melodrama and a film that feels truly genuine when it comes to human emotion. Because it is based on a play, the film is just a series of conversations between its four protagonists. However, unlike many theater plays adapted to the big screen, Nichols makes the film utterly cinematic.

The theater DNA is still there, but the movie still feels like a movie. The change of location and the time jump really help the movie feel like it is always moving forward. The story presents us with the most important moments in these characters’ relationships, which is enough to be absolutely compelling.


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The following paragraphs contain spoilers for ‘Closer.’ Read at your own risk.

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How did these couples meet?

At its core, ‘Closer’ is a movie about love and being human. Love is one of the most universal feelings everyone experiences in one way or another. There is love for your family, love for the things you like to do, and love for experiences others have. It is a very wide spectrum. However, throughout history, romantic love has become one of the main goals in people’s lives. Finding someone who wants to be with you and share your life with you seems to be one of those major accomplishments. It is hard to find, but you can count yourself lucky if you do.

‘Closer’ then sees us meeting different people searching for this romantic love. We see how they find and lose it because that is the harsh reality. Finding love is really hard, but the real challenge comes when it is time to keep that love next to you. Most people fail, especially today, and it seems like ‘Closer’ was really on the vanguard of showing how the new generations will relate to love and what it takes to get it and maintain it.

It splits its story between four points of view, and there is nothing more than that. The rest of the world doesn’t matter because that is exactly how you feel when you are in love. It is just you and the other person.

Closer Ending Explained 3

In the beginning, we meet Dan, a frustrated journalist who works in a newspaper. His ambitions of becoming a very important writer have become a dream, and he is now just writing obituaries and making them more appealing to readers before they are published. One day, in London, he meets a mysterious woman who gets in a car incident while crossing the street.

He takes care of her, and she introduces herself as Alice. They fall in love and become a couple. Alice is sparky, young, beautiful, and sneaky. She’s American and embodies all of it.

Alice and Dan keep up with their relationship, and it all seems perfect; they love each other and are young and beautiful. Nothing bad could happen. However, that is not the case. While on a photo shoot at his place, Dan begins flirting with Anna, an American photographer, and he seems to be completely smitten by her, even suggesting they should have an affair.

Anna leaves, interested. We see that Alice has heard everything about it but decides to continue with Dan; she just loves him too much to leave him. Dan acts as if nothing is happening.

What was Alice real name?

The theme of truth comes up numerous times throughout the movie. Without truth, we are animals, says one of the main characters. Animals don’t really have a perception of what truth is, they just experiment with the world at face value, which means they cannot really lie, and without the concept of lying, then the concept of truth cannot exist.

Dan is shown to be deceitful, loves to lie, and loves to keep up with beautiful lies to make others happy. He does so in his work, embellishing obituaries, and he does so with Alice. He says he loves her when, in reality, he is bored by her.

One of Dan’s lies pushes Anna to meet Larry. They meet on an online sex chat, where Dan passes up as Anna and tries to play a practical joke on Larry. Dan books a date with Larry, who actually goes to the meeting place. However, the joke is on Dan as Larry actually meets Anna at the meeting place, and they start dating. Larry is the complete opposite of Dan. Larry is truthful to a fault.

He cannot lie; even on their first meeting, he tells Anna everything. Other people have invented a lie to save some dignity from being the victim of such a joke. Not Larry. He is always upfront. He says the truth, even when people don’t want to hear it.

Closer Ending Explained 2

Larry and Anna end up marrying, but Anna keeps being interested in Dan, and she cheats on Larry. Why wouldn’t she do that? When comparing their prowess at sex, Anna describes Dan as just the same as Larry but sweeter. Dan, who is the manifestation of lies, is sweeter than the truth, and it seems like Anna is ready just to avoid the truth and live with comfortable lies.

Dan breaks up with Alice, and Anna with Larry. The liar catches the one who is comfortable with lies. Time passes, and Larry and Alice meet each other. Larry is truthful once again, and so is Alice, who tells him her real name, Jane. It seems she is tired of lying, just like Larry.

Larry and Anna have one last meeting to sign the divorce papers, and Larry says he will do it if they have sex one last time. He cannot lie or be insincere, Anna knows this, and so she accepts. Dan gets mad at it, but Anna assures him they will be fine now that Larry is out of the picture. However, in the end, we learn that Anna never sent the divorce papers and chose to return to Larry. Instead of living with lies, she decides to live with the truth, even if it is not the most comfortable thing in the world.


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Dan goes back to Alice, but his lies don’t have the same effect anymore. Alice decides that she doesn’t love Dan anymore and leaves. In the end, we see that Dan finds Alice’s name in a cemetery. He finally realizes that Alice had to lie to him so that he could be interested in her. The movie closes with Jane back in America, finding her new truth, and starting a new life.