Welcome to Knockout Horror. Today we are going to explain the ending for UK Horror Thriller Calibre. If you are new here, welcome and thanks for visiting. We review horror movies and, occasionally, explain their endings. We try to do things a little different here. Reviews are both causal and conversational. We don’t aim to be pretentious and spend time breaking down the meaning of movies. At Knockout Horror we point out the good points and laugh at the bad. I like to focus on a range of horror. We don’t just review the new stuff. We are searching for decent horror both old and new.
Anyways, enough with the upsell. You are likely here because you just Googled “Calibre Ending Explained”, right? That is something we can help with. Calibre is a fantastic thriller with horror elements. We reviewed it a fair while ago now and really enjoyed it. The ending was fairly straight forward but it’s worth breaking down for the sake of clarity.
It goes without saying that this article will contain spoilers. If you haven’t watched Calibre yet and have stumbled on this article. I suggest you check out our Calibre review first and foremost. If you like the sound of it, hunt down Calibre and take a look before coming back here. I think it is still available on Netflix as of this writing. Without further ado, let’s take a look.
A Quick Recap
A fair amount happens in Calibre so I won’t recap it all. Basically, Marcus is taking his friend Vaughn on a hunting trip. Vaughn has never hunted before and has a baby on the way. This trip is acting as something of a last hurrah for the pair before Vaughn becomes a father. They are heading off to the highlands of Scotland. Marcus’ dad used to take him stalking in a rural community. Marcus sees this as an opportunity to connect with both Vaughn and his own childhood.
Many of the locals in the rural community are quite welcoming to the pair. A few take exception to Marcus and his somewhat bullish personality. A fight nearly ensues at the local pub but is quashed by the locals. Vaughn and Marcus spend the night with a couple of girls. Vaughn refuses one of the girl’s advances being that he is in a relationship. The morning comes and the pair head off to go hunting.
Hunting, Hangovers and Drugs – Oh My!
Still hungover, Vaughn feels awful. Marcus is using drugs to fuel his extracurricular activities and is incredibly enthusiastic. Vaughn does not have a gun with him so Marcus lets him use one of his. Taking aim at a deer, Vaughn fires only to hear a scream. It turns out he has actually hit a young boy who was hidden behind the deer. The boy’s father violently confronts Vaughn before being shot dead by Marcus.
Marcus, understanding that Vaughn was using his gun without a license. Believes that Vaughn would be imprisoned for killing the boy. He was using the gun illegally and Marcus would be in trouble for supplying it. Combined with the drugs he has taken and the pair being hungover. Marcus thinks the best way out was to kill the man.
He tells Vaughn they need to hide the bodies. The rest of the movie follows the pair’s attempts to avoid suspicion. Vaughn continually falls apart. Just as the two are about to leave an angry local slashes their tyres. It turns out Marcus has been bumping uglies with the man’s daughter. Marcus and Vaughn are now trapped in the town until their car is repaired.
From Bad to Worse
Becoming increasingly paranoid, tensions begin to mount. It becomes clear to the locals that a father and son from the village have not returned. Marcus and Vaughn are invited to help in the search. Not wanting to raise suspicion, they agree to help.
Arriving in the forest with a group of the locals. It isn’t long before the bodies are found. The pair decide to flee before the group can turn on them. Jumping in their car, Brian shoots in their direction rupturing the fuel tank. They drive as long as they can before the fuel runs out. They bail out and run into the woods.
Vaughn trips and is jumped on by a dog. Marcus kills the dog but it is clear Vaughn can’t continue. Marcus runs away as Vaughn is savagely beaten by Brian. The group take him back to the farm. Realising that killing Vaughn will bring suspicion on the village. The group spend some time deciding what to do with him. Their conversations are broken by news that Marcus has been captured.
Onto The Ending
So here’s where a little explanation may be needed. The residents tie Marcus up against a gate. They give Vaughn the option to kill Marcus. If he does so, they will let him go. If not, they will kill both of them. Vaughn is initially reluctant but, eventually, shoots Marcus dead.
The group give Vaughn a cover story. They tell him to let the police know that Marcus went North. The locals will tell the police their relatives disappeared. Act as if nothing happened. The locals hide Marcus’ Jeep and Vaughn’s wife arrives to pick him up.
Blood is Thicker Than Water
The movie ends with Vaughn in bed with his wife. He heads into the room of his new born baby. Holding the child, he looks into the camera. Vaughn’s face displays a mix of regret, trauma and resolve. I believe the implication is that he will always be haunted by what happened. He regrets killing his friend but understands that it was necessary. He realises Marcus caused his own problems. It is clear to him that Marcus was going to drag Vaughn down with him. Above all, however, he realises that family comes above everything else.
This is a point that has been emphasised throughout the movie. The villagers imply that the community is like a family. They help each other and do what they have to do to protect each other. In their world, family comes first. They have been abandoned by the rest of society. People no longer come for holidays. The police serve only to interfere and make their lives difficult. Corporations and government don’t know that they exist. Life is difficult so they have to stick together.
Vaughn is reminded of this when given the ultimatum. Marcus has caused him so many problems. He was almost killed as a result of Marcus’ carelessness. Vaughn now needs to focus on his fiancée and unborn child. Vaughn does exactly that. Although forever traumatised, he knows he did the right thing. Afterall, family comes first, just like the villagers told him.
And That is That
I believe that is all that needs to be said about the ending of Calibre. It is a fantastic movie that does a fine job of highlighting the struggles of rural communities. Being a member of a Welsh rural community myself, it is easy to see parallels. Locals help each other and keep an eye out for each other. Luckily the area I live in is a hotspot for people staying in holiday homes. Sort of the opposite of the village in Calibre. Still, many of these communities are forgotten and neglected.
The way Matt Palmer weaved a fascinating horror into these struggles is admirable. He did it while also showing tremendous respect to these communities. He didn’t make them a backwoods group of weirdos. It was sympathetic and handled with class. Great job Matt!
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