Banshees Of Inisherin Ending Explained: What Was The Point Of Colm Chopping Off His Fingers?

How often do we fight with our friends? Countless times, right? Sometimes we go on without talking to them for days while sometimes we cannot bear to keep quiet for even a moment. Friendship might be the most uncomplicated relationship of all and yet it could be highly difficult to understand the essence of it. Not all friendships are the same, Colm and Padraic are here to prove that to us. Banshees Of Inisherin is a critically acclaimed friendship story but that is not all!

Manifested by the immensely popular film geek, Martin McDonagh, Banshees Of Inisherin, follows a compelling plot dipped in a powerful lesson. It is a dark comedy that leaves its viewers submerged in deep realisation. It’s ending, though quite complex, has been a hot topic of discussion ever since its release. In this Banshees Of Inisherin ending explained, let us delve into the complex yet compelling movie!

Banshees Of Inisherin Ending Explained

The recipient of several accolades, including nine Oscar nominations and three Golden Globe Awards, Banshees Of Inisherin has a relatively simple plot. It revolves around two mates, Colm and Padraic, who have known each other for a long time. Bonding over secrets and encouraging each other throughout the course of their friendship, Colm and Padraic’s relationship has gotten quite strong. The entente cordiale between Colm and Padraic doesn’t last though. Suddenly Colm hits with an absurd realisation and nothing in their lives is left simple anymore.

Colm, who suddenly starts believing that he is destined to become a music legend, decides to cut off ties with Padraic accusing him of being dull. He assumes Padraic is a thorn in his way to becoming a successful musician. Padraic is a kind gentleman, nothing like his mate Colm. So, when Colm rudely severs ties with Padraic, he is heartbroken and determined to preserve their decades-long friendship.

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The Rivalry Between Colm and Padraic Starts To Grow More

Banshees Of Inisherin Ending Explained

After Colm receives a self-induced prophecy, his focus shifts towards becoming a musician. But Padraic has only one thing looping over his mind; saving his relationship with Colm. On his quest, Padraic’s sister, Siobhan, and a town boy Dominic join him. The three of them try to salvage Padraic and Colm’s iconic friendship however they can. Attempting to douse a fire, they end up igniting it.

After witnessing the trio’s relentless attempts to reconcile him with Padraic, Colm takes a harsh decision. After refusing to speak to Padraic for so long, Colm is tired of shooing them away. So, Colm claims that he will chop off one of his fingers each time Padraic tries to come closer to him. Cutting off fingers for a musician seems like taking away words from a writer and stealing weapons from a soldier. Believing the same, Padraic doesn’t take Colm seriously and continues his attempts towards reconciliation. Little did he know, he would immensely regret it.

Playing With Fire Could Be Dangerous But Playing With Relationships Is Downright Deadly

In a fit of rage, Colm chops off his pinky finger to retaliate against Padraic’s constant disturbance. He doesn’t stop here though. Colm throws his bloodied finger into Padraic’s lawn where Padraic’s dear pony, Jenny, munches over it and dies due to it. The noble Padraic is burdened with grief and rage now, shedding his nobless and transforming into a ball of anger. The once best friends have now become cut-throat enemies.

Dominic, who was continuously trying to help Padraic and Colm reconcile, committed suicide due to his father’s extensive abuse. Meanwhile, Padraic’s sister, Siobhan, has secured a job outside Inisherin and asks Padraic to join her. Everyone around Padraic and Colm is moving forward but these two are stuck together, holding onto their unnecessary grudge. 

Colm, whose sky-high aspirations are yet to be fulfilled, feels guilty enough to mourn Jenny. But not enough to give up on his so-called dream. Sadly enough, neither is the epitome of nobleness, Padraic is ready to take the first step towards his friend.

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Do Colm And Padraic Reconcile?

Banshees Of Inisherin Ending Explained

The ego battle between these two reaches a point where neither of them is ready to come down from their supposed thrones. Both Colm and Padraic find their situations escalating out of their hands quickly but neither of them is trying to bridge the increasing distance. Things start to fall apart when Padraic decides on revenge and lights Colm’s house on fire. Even though he is fully aware that Colm is inside the burning cottage, Padraic chooses to do nothing about it but warn his friend.

Meanwhile, Padraic’s sister, Siobhan, has moved to the mainland after Padraic constantly agrees to stay there and avenge Jenny. At the end of Banshees Of Inisherin, things seem to settle down for Colm. He comes out of the fire unscathed but his house is now a mountain of ashes. Walking towards Padraic, Colm is certain they stand on the same page now. If Jenny died due to Colm, Padraic lit his house on fire and settled the score. 

Padraic, however, has a different interpretation of things. To him, they would be only equal once either of them is dead. Colm has turned his best friend against him and lost his chance at becoming a musical legend due to his stubbornness. On the other hand, Padraic is no longer the kind-hearted man he claimed to be and has lost a chance at a better future on the mainland.

Was Colm Chopping Off His Finger A Tantrum?

One of the major questions Banshees Of Inisherin leaves us with is Colm’s reason behind chopping off his finger. You must be wondering whether it was of any significance as I did. The way the makers build up Colm’s threat makes us all wonder about the same question. You are in for a sore disappointment with this one here though. Colm, surprisingly, had no reason to chop off his finger other than his senseless ego.

While initially, this pair comes across as sensible adults, their maturity starts to vanish as the movie progresses. If Colm has no reason to cut down his pinkie finger, isn’t it surprising that Banshees Of Inisherin has won several accolades and has been a critics’ favourite? Well, it is because of the underlying message Banshees Of Inisherin conveys to us.

The Hidden Message Banshees Of Inisherin Is Trying To Enunciate

Banshees Of Inisherin Ending Explained

It wouldn’t be a McDonagh special if the movie didn’t hold a deeper message. Like his popular works before, Banshees Of Inisherin comes across as vague initially. But as we give it a thought, things start to make sense. Here, in this friendship-turned-hatred movie, the message is quite simple yet thought-inducing.

Colm and Padraic, both find themselves overshadowed by their respective agendas. While Colm wants to succeed in life by shedding his most beautiful friendship, Padraic loses his sanity while trying to avenge his beloved pony. Both of them are driven by negative emotions and cruel intentions. It symbolizes how a pessimistic approach to life ends up leaving us empty-handed. Neither Colm nor Padraic could get anything out of their feud in the end.

Aside from this intense message, Banshees Of Inisherin is also metaphorically similar to a war. More specifically, the feud between Colm and Padraic is compared to the Irish War where destruction paved way for devastation. No war could ever portray anything more than loss even if, in the end, there is always a winner. Here, Colm gets his wish granted. Padraic wouldn’t see his face again but is it really an accomplishment? Banshees Of Inisherin does make us stop again and think about the 2-hour wild ride it took us on.

Banshees Of Inisherin Review: A Childish Tale Bearing A Thought-Provoking Message

I cannot begin this review by crediting McDonagh enough for his insightful approach to life and this movie. The underlying subtlety speaks volumes for the finesse of the movie. Be it the lead actors, Colin Farrell (Colm) or Brendan Gleeson (Padraic), or the rest of the cast members, none of them has left room for disappointment. Right from the start, the actors have adapted the narration flawlessly. With that said the simple yet commendable plot is quite engrossing as well. 

The backdrop Banshees Of Inisherin is set in is another plus point for the movie. Set in the aesthetic backdrop of an Irish island depicting the time of Irish civilian war, Banshees Of Inisherin has secured a place in the list of top eye-catchy Irish movies. While McDonagh has covered every aspect in vivid detail, the only complaint from the movie remains its somewhat unsatisfactory ending. Padraic and Colm’s feud isn’t over yet. Notably, Padraic claimed that he isn’t done yet at the end of Banshees Of Inisherin. 

What he truly meant by it is left for us to analyze and interpret. Maybe, McDonagh was planning for a sequel beforehand. Or maybe, he decided to leave the story with a message that some feuds take life-long worth of energy and are yet never solved. Either way, Banshees Of Inisherin deserves a solid 9 on 10!

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