We discuss the ending of the Netflix film Bardo, False Chronicle of a Handful of Truths, and it will contain spoilers.
Alejandro González Iñárritu carefully crafts his journey through Gacho in one of the most beautifully shot films of the year. It’s an emotional journey with Gacho as he navigates this sense of emptiness and loss.
It affects his entire life and he questions every decision he has ever made, including moving to the United States. He shows how he had to balance his life as a journalist in America and how his people responded to his success. Daniel Giménez Cacho gives a powerful performance in this film and explores Iñârritu’s emotional journey with him.
Bardo, False Chronicle of a Handful of Truths is a heartbreaking set of memories and life experiences that highlights the entire spectrum of emotional expression through stunning symbolic imagery that will affect each viewer differently. It’s a deeply personal film to Iñârritu, and you can feel his connection to the visuals more so than the character of Gacho himself. Further proving that the moving picture can evoke certain emotions that words cannot.
The most impressive aspect of this film is Iñárritu’s ability to show different angles of Gacho’s emotions through symbolic imagery. The loss of his son is something he carries with him, and the image of the newborn baby comes to his mind when he least expects it.
The bloody image of the umbilical cord stretching down the hallway as Gacho and his wife Lucia (Griselda Siciliani) walk out of the hospital shows their attachment to the child moving forward. There are many moments where Iñárritu shows Gacho feeling trapped and yearning for freedom through the imagery used. There are fish that break free from a bag filled with water that he holds onto, and moments where he can’t move or is lost in a dark space that parallels the depth of his mind.
Gacho is lost within himself because of who the media tells him he is and the man he thinks he is, but that still isn’t enough to make him feel whole.
Bardo, False Chronicle of a Handful of Truths ending explained
In a somewhat disjointed ending, which only makes sense in the context of the concept Iñárritu created for his own memories, Gacho makes his way to get his award. While he resides in America with his daughter for the remaining years, he suffers a stroke, thus having an out-of-body experience when receiving his post-humous award. Whether it’s symbolic or not, it is a representation of how humans are wired.
There was an overload in his mind of the man he should be and the stroke reflects that. While he is in a coma, his bare feet are nailed to the stage where his daughter was accepting his award. He had the spotlight on him, but he was stuck there, unable to move or to even hear the applause of the crowd.
It was a different way to present the award to Gacho after living such an extraordinary life as a journalist and filmmaker. Unfortunately, he slowly travels to another world through the coma and understands his familial relationships even more so. He has moments with each of his family members and of the people in his country to fully understand what it was like to live.
What did you think of the ending of the Netflix film Bardo, False Chronicle of a Handful of Truths? Comment below.