Spoilers follow for Zack Snyders Justice League.

Zack Snyders Justice League

has arrived on HBO Max

, and Sky Cinema and Now TV, in the US and UK respectively, and were sure you have questions about its ending. The Snyder Cuts climax is different to 2017s theatrical cut in a few ways and, given how its structured, you may be slightly confused about whats going on and how the movie closes out.

Well be diving into what the ending means in this article, and we’ll cover the key plot points in case you want further analysis of what happened. Just so were clear, there are huge spoilers for the Snyder Cut after the image below. If you havent finished it, or even started watching for that matter, now is the time to turn back.

What happens during the final battle in Zack Snyders Justice League? 

(Image credit: HBO Max/Warner Bros.)

Throughout Zack Snyder’s Justice League, Steppenwolf has sought out the Mother Boxes that Darkseid left on Earth after his previously failed attempt to conquer it. In the DC Extended Universe (DCEU), combining three Mother Boxes – a process known as ‘synchronization – into a single entity is called the Unity. The Unity has the power to terraform planets into worlds similar to that of the Mother Boxes master: in Darkseid and Steppenwolfs case, any Unity event transforms planets into a replica of their home world, Apokolips.

After Steppenwolf acquires them all, he returns to his stronghold and begins the synchronization process. In a last-ditch bid to stop him, Batman and friends hatch a plan to separate them using a combination of Cyborgs and The Flashs abilities. Running as fast as the speed of light, The Flash will whip up an electric charge big enough to allow Cyborg to enter the synchronization, rip the Mother Boxes apart and save Earth. Meanwhile, Batman, Wonder Woman, and Aquaman will deal with Steppenwolf and his army of Parademons.

With his memories having returned – and kitted out in his new black suit – Superman arrives to help. As Cyborg hacks into the Mother Boxes, however, the plan falls apart. The Flash, who has been running laps outside to build up his electric charge, is hit by a Parademon cannon. Unable to heal himself in time to reach the rest of the group, he doesnt supercharge Cyborg and the Unity is completed. Darkseid arrives via a portal behind the group and, in the blink of an eye, the Unity unleashes a gigantic wave of energy across the planet that destroys all life and terraforms Earth.

Zack Snyder’s Justice League: how do The Flash and Cyborg reverse the Unity? 

(Image credit: HBO Max/Warner Bros.)

It seems that the Justice League have failed – or have they? The Flash, now healed from his wound, decides to break his only rule regarding his powers. Running faster than the speed of light, he begins to turn back time. The terraforming of Earth is reversed, the Justice League – killed in the Unitys explosion – are brought back to life, and The Flash returns time to a point before the Unity is completed. Barry Allen supercharges Cyborg, who enters the synchronization.

Inside, Cyborg is greeted by an illusion of his parents and his former human self. The imaginary trio try to convince Cyborg to join them but, rejecting his former life, he pulls them apart. The illusion is revealed to be the three Mother Boxes in ‘physical form and, with Supermans help in the real world, Cyborg halts the synchronization. As the Mother Boxes fall to the ground, an enraged Steppenwolf cries out, but his screams are short-lived. Hes impaled on Aquamans trident, punched towards Darkseids portal by Superman, and beheaded by Wonder Woman as his lifeless body lands at Darkseids feet. The Justice League looks on as Darkseids portal closes.

Has the Justice League succeeded in the Snyder Cut? 

(Image credit: HBO Max/Warner Bros.)

Yes – but theres a caveat. Zack Snyders Justice League ends in a similar fashion to the 2017 theatrical cut, with each hero getting their moment in the sun. Bruce Wayne buys the Kent farm back for Clark and his mother Martha after it was repossessed by the bank, and Barry Allen – aka The Flash – gets a job in Central Citys Police Department. Diana Prince (Wonder Woman) joins Bruce at Wayne Manor to formally set up the Justice League’s headquarters, while Arthur Curry, or Aquaman as we know him, returns to Atlantis to assume his title as King of the Seas.

There are some changes to Snyders ‘happy ending, though. Rather than step back from her heroic duties, Diana forlornly looks out across the ocean towards Themyscira, and wonders if her home, family and friends survived Steppenwolfs assault. Meanwhile, Victor Stone – aka Cyborg – reassembles his deceased fathers dictaphone and restarts the message that he refused to listen to earlier. This differs from the theatrical cut, which saw Cyborg and a still-alive Silas Stone explore the formers abilities at S.T.A.R Labs.

We also get that post-credits scene, which was part of the theatrical cut, involving Lex Luthor – who has escaped Arkham Asylum – and Deathstroke on board the formers yacht. However, while that short sequence brought the 2017 film to an end, save for Superman and The Flashs race, Zack Snyders Justice League has two final moments to share. 

You can find in-depth explanations on those moments later today we’ll update this page with links to those articles when they’re published.