The White Tiger Ending Explained: Ramin Bahrani, An Iranian American filmmaker, explored the immigrant experience in the United States of America in his previous movies like ‘Goodbye Solo’ and ‘Man Push Cart.’ If you get crisp, ‘The White Tiger’ film is based on a very great Booker Prize-winning novel by Aravind Adiga, a Fellow Columbia University alumnus. It tells the story of a man snarling in pursuit of happiness, individuality, and freedom.
The story of the film depicts the underbelly of modern-day India, which is basically trapped between the old traditions like casteism and new age beliefs. So, why the title of the film is ‘The White Tiger’? It refers to a very rare animal that is born only once in a long generation. The narrator (retrospective) of the film, Adarsh Gourav, aka Balram Halwai, always finds a way, and the film shows how he finally reaches his destination.
SPOILERS AHEAD (The White Tiger Ending Explained)
The White Tiger: Storyline
The story is told in an informal way where Balram, who is now a successful entrepreneur, writes a letter to Wen Jiabao, a Chinese Premier. As we know, most epic tales are usually told in those part of the subcontinents in the Heartlands of where Buddha Found enlightenment. India is now in the stage where it is developing to transform a casteist society into a classic society. Balram, who is a very brilliant student, is born into a family of sweet makers.
As he belongs to a lower caste, he’s always been taught to serve the upper caste of society. Once he impresses a school inspector, and that was the first time when someone compared Balram to a rare born animal, White Tiger. He then gets an opportunity to study in Delhi. But his money-hungry grandmother, Kamlesh Gill, pulls him out of the school and made him work at tea shops where all his other brothers used to work.
Balram’s manipulation of his freedom and individuality was done by his father in his early stages. Bound by his own fate of poverty and problems, Halwai Sr. wanted one of his sons to find a way out of all of these circumstances and live a good life. Balram describes India as divided into two types: People who live in the light and the people living in the darkness. Balram’s father died of tuberculosis at his very young age, and he was made to grow faster. He then finally realizes that his fate is connected with the landlord, Mahesh Manjrekar, aka Stork, and his family.
Balram Arriving Dhanbad: Chemistry Starts
When Balram arrives in Dhanbad, where the landlord’s family lived, Balram convinces the landlord to hire him as a driver. He wanted them to hire him as s driver for the landlord’s youngest son, Ashok, aka Rajkumar Rao, and his Indian American wife Pinky, aka Priyanka Chopra Jonas. The chemistry between these three characters brings the primary storyline of the film. For many of whom casteism still runs in their veins, Rajkumar Rao (Ashok) is portrayed as India’s urban upper-caste youth who completed his studies from America. Pinky is very different in these matters; an immigrant, coming from a different family, is often outraged by how Ashok’s family treats Balram.
While narrating his story, Balram tells the Chinese Prime Minister that it will be darker before it actually does. On the night before Pinky’s birthday, she was drunk and wandering around the streets in her car, where she ran over a child in poor parts of town. Balram then says Ashok that he’ll take care of everything. Though that was not in his mind, to please his master, he said things he didn’t want to and smiled.
After that Landlord’s Older son, Mongoose and Landlord tell Balram that he has to blame for hit and run accident for the child’s death. However, he was further informed that no one had reported his death, so he doesn’t have to take the blame. The frustration and anger he had in him lead him to the path of violation and twisted road to liberation. THE WHITE TIGER IN HIM HAS EMERGED.
The White Tiger Ending: Why Balram Killed Ashok?
The relationship between the three characters has created the plot of the film. After Swaroop Sampat, The Chief Minister, threatened the Stork, the Family decided to send the sons to Delhi to fund their opponents. Ashok and Pinky then Travel with Balram with a bag full of cash to visit the central government’s top ministers and bureaucrats.
Pinky and Ashok started to treat Balram very passionately, which made him very happy. But he wasn’t prepared for the reason why they were doing this.
In the Film ‘The White Tiger,’ Stork and his bigger Son Mongoose are portrayed as who only knows how to strip the people below them, who are lower caste and comes below them according to them. Although Ashok, who is called Lamb by Balram, is trapped in his own sense of privilege.
Balram Realises He’s Unique
When the inspector came to Balram’s school and singled him out, Balram always wanted to have a great life in the future. He was the only student in the school sent to Delhi, which made him believe that he is destiny’s child. The one who is assumed to mold and break the conclusions of the rigid society and finally find liberation. When Balram’s grandmother snatched away his education, he never gave up on his dream and eventually convinced her grandmother to give her money for his driving lessons. That was the only thing that really mattered to her, a job that will give him a steady supply of money.
When Balram arrives in Delhi, he finds his next destination to be Bangalore. He had a very great entrepreneurial spirit. But he didn’t understand his potential fully till he was freed from the responsibility towards his master. He served Pinky And Ashok and always took their insults with a smile. When He was blamed for the hit and run incident, he didn’t ask a single question or came up with a better option.
But after that storyline of Balram’s became darker. After Pinky left Ashok, Ashok was in a pretty bad stage, and Balram took advantage of his depression. He then started stealing petrol and selling it to drivers, giving false invoices for car repairs, and taking the money to him.
Did He Finally Kill him? Final Result
The story changed when He got to know that Ashok is looking for someone to replace Balram. He asks in a letter, “Do we resist our masters behind the face of love” Or “do we love them behind a face of Resistant.” Ashok went to give a bag full of money to the newly elected Chief Minister. From there, Balram takes the car to a place where no one goes, tells that wheels probably have some fault, and when Ashok steps out of the car, Balram kills him with a broken bottle…
Balram tells Wen Jiabo that the police are searching for him, and now we probably know why? He faints in a zoo when he concludes that to obtain his freedom, and he killed Ashok. This happened when he watched a White Tiger in a zoo with his nephew pacing around his cage as he keeps the animal sane inside that cage.
Balram’s Family Killed? What ‘The White Tiger’ Ending Tells…
Although Balram doesn’t know whether his family is killed or not, he tells Wen Jiabo that his family could be killed in retribution.
According to Balram, India used to have thousands of castes; now, there exist only two castes in India: those with small bellies and those with big bellies. After he moved to Bangalore and established a successful cab service, this urbanized Balram has now fulfilled his father’s dream and pushes his life from darkness to the light. He also saved his nephew’s life, the only one in the family that he could.
Balram states a significant point in the film he said; there are only two ways in our country to leave behind the poverty you were born with, that is, crime and politics. HE CHOOSES LATTER.
Although some of the money that Balram borrowed from Ashok, he gave it to an IPS officer as a bribe in Bangalore so that he could ensure that all his competitors are removed from the streets. He sees the employees of White Tiger drivers like that, only the deals with every problem in the business himself and doesn’t let anyone in the company handle it or suffer for it.