Welcome to the Ending Explained for ‘Out of Exile,’ a 2022 heist film written and directed by Kyle Kauwika Harris and starring Adam Hampton, Hayley McFarland, Kyle Jacob Henry, Ryan Merriman, and Peter Greene. The film is one of those classic heist films, depicting the story of a criminal who has had a change of heart and wants to get out of their life of crime and start all over again. However, as is expected, getting out of the only way of life you know is harder than it looks. This is a movie you have seen many times before.
In terms of the film’s quality, you can tell it is a low-budget film. However, nothing in the story, the acting, or the set pieces makes it stand out from the rest of the low-budget films that come out yearly. There is zero sense of style or vision. You can say that anyone could have directed this movie, as it has no personal stamp. Harris has good intentions, but his script just fails to be interesting. The dialogue is quite dry, there is zero sense of humor, and all the drama is up to eleven all the time. This makes the film feel very one, not from beginning to end.
Why is Gabriel saving all of his money?
‘Out of Exile’ is a classic redemption tale. We are introduced right at the very beginning to our main character, Gabriel Russell, an ex-military who has been serving 16 years in prison. We meet him the moment he goes out. You can feel that Gabe has seen things we wish he hadn’t. He is ready to turn the page and become something else entirely. However, getting out of the game is harder than it seems, and he quickly returns to becoming a thief for a local gangster named Rader. Rader sets up the jobs, and then everyone takes their share.
When the movie begins, we see Gabriel and two other men getting ready to rob a money truck. The other two men inside the van are Wesley, Gabe’s younger brother, and Marcos, a former fellow soldier. By making all these characters ex-military, the movie chooses to do some social commentary related to the treatment of veterans in the United States of America. It has been depicted in many movies that veterans are often mistreated and not given the best of opportunities in civilian life once they come back from war.
It is well documented in many films and other sources that being a soldier is a life-changing experience, especially when we are dealing with a soldier who has experienced combat firsthand. These men and women are transformed into killing machines, but those abilities are inadequate for civilian life, and many cannot adapt. ‘Out of Exile’ tries to talk a bit about this subject by focusing on Wesley, a character with no purpose and whose killing of a guard during this first robbery causes an avalanche effect that would destroy his life and everything else.
Wesley kills a guard, and Rader and the others are afraid that now the police will go with their full strength against them. This is the beginning of the main external conflict in the film. We also learn that Gabe is saving his shares for something. We also get to see a picture where he is with a small girl. Does Gabe have a daughter? Where is she? We don’t get those answers during the movie, but we can speculate that something bad happened. When FBI agent Brett Solomon gets involved in the case of the dead guard, the crew goes low-profile.
Can Gabriel get out of the game?
From there, the movie follows the characters and their progression. We see Gabe trying to reconnect with Dawn, his wife. He seems to love her very much and wants to start all over again. Their daughter is not mentioned, though, meaning the girl is dead.
This is a terrible thing, and their relationship seems completely unfixable. A pimp is harassing Dawn, and it seems she is doing night walk work on the side while she waits tables during the day. Gabe leaves her some money, but it doesn’t seem good for him.
On the other side, Wesley is spending a lot of money on showy things, which catches the attention of the FBI. Wesley is also becoming increasingly unstable. After he kills the guard during the robbery, he becomes more trigger-happy and gets into fights. He wants to get close to Rader to get his own job, but Rader sees him as a risk, and just before the execution of one last bank robbery, Rader kills Wesley and his girlfriend.
This robbery will also be the last for Gabe as he expects to grab this money and escape with Dawn. They reconnected after Gabe took revenge on the pimp for having hit Dawn.
The movie also focuses on Perriman and how his investigation against Gabe and the others progresses. However, this plotline is completely useless and only serves as a filler. Perriman and his companions are completely uninteresting, and in comparison to Gabe’s issues, Perriman’s seem quite minor.
The plot line ends when Perriman discovers that another FBI agent has been messing with his investigation. Rader is an informant, and Gabe discovers this when the last job goes bust. He goes back to Rader’s bar and kills him. Gabe only needed to suspect that Rader did something to Wesley. That was enough reason to kill him.
The movie ends with Gabe trying to get to Dawn, but he gets killed at a gas station by the pimp he got beat before. Dawn waits and waits but then leaves. Gabe looks at the camera as he dies, probably lamenting all the bad decisions he made in life. He won’t be able to be with Dawn and her new baby. We jump forward in time and see a much happier Dawn looking at the horizon and a door opening behind her, meaning the baby is now grown up. Gabe might not be with them, but he gave them the chance of a new start.