Please Explain Swordfish Ending!!

Pete D

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Maybe I'm just stupid, but the ending of Swordfish totally confused me. I get that he faked his death and all of that stuff... And I read the other post on this site about it, but that didn't really clear much up for me.
What was with the lookalike body in the wine cellar? Did he put that body in the helicopter to be used as his remains? Did Travolta kill that guy, and then change his face to look like his?
Please help!
 

Richard Travale

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I've added the spoiler tag so that the ending isn't completely ruined for anyone who peeks at this thread.
Spoiler:I believe the guy in the cellar was the real Israeli Mossad agent Gabriel Shear and that Travolta in fact did kill him to take over his identity. He kept the body in the cellar to later use as "misdirection" in his getaway since he was obviously 10 steps ahead of everybody else in the movie.
If you remember the scene where he is speaking with the Senator and says that he has changed his appearance so many times that he forgets what he looks like. I gather that this is a regular practice for him.
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Dean DeMass

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Did Travolta kill that guy, and then change his face to look like his?
In a word, yes. This way there is no question that Gabriel is dead. He can then go on and fight his war that he wants to fight. Gabriel was a very smart individual and I am glad that they ended the film this way. He was much smarter than Jackman's character and the film would have been a big letdown if it ended any other way.
If you remember in the film, right before Travolta kills the Senator, he tells him, that he has worn so many faces, that he doesn't even know who he is anymore. This is the factor that shows that Gabriel is just another face and name for Travolta's character. He will do whatever it takes to complete is objective. War is hell , and if that means some innocent people have to die to complete your objective, so be it. That is why he was unaffected when innocents were killed at the bank. In the long run, those few sacrifices will make the world a better place.
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JohnS

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I think that Travolta killed the real Israeli Mossad then changed his face to look like his. So he could get away at the end.
If you also remember in the VERY end, a news reporter states that suspected terrorist Allal bin-Hazzad was killed on his boat. So Travolta must now be taking on a NEW idenity, by stealing his body, and changing his face AGAIN to look like him.
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Bjorn Olav Nyberg

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I seriously doubt though that if Travolta would take a new identity, he would impersonate a terrorist leader. The ending was just that, Travolta killing another terrorist. If he picks another person to impersonate, I think it would be someone less profilic. Also, I agree it would make more sense to operate the person he's mimicking to look like him, but then again, that would make the identification of the dead bodies harder.
What I would really like to know though, is how Travolta replaced the body and got out of the helicopter at the end. I suppose it was planned that Jackman should shoot down the helicopter, but even so, it felt like a cheat to me that they never told us how he did it.
Edited: Embarassing name typo

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[Edited last by Bjørn Olav Nyberg on November 02, 2001 at 09:22 AM]
 

Pete D

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Thanks guys. I get it now. I think I can even help...
Bjorn, I don't think Gabriel ever got into the helicopter. That's why they showed, for a quick second, someone running down the stairs from the roof into the building. That was Gabriel. The dead body must have been in the helicopter when it got there.
 

Nigel McN

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The Terrorist killing at the end was (I believe) to show Gabriel starting his anti-terrorist terrorism.
 
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Yet Gabriel ends up becoming the very person he has sworn to destroy-a terrorist-. He uses the same excuses to justify his actions, that innocent people should dies in order to serve the cause.
 

Scott Merryfield

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What I would really like to know though, is how Travolta replaced the body and got out of the helicopter at the end. I suppose it was planned that Jackman should shoot down the helicopter, but even so, it felt like a cheat to me that they never told us how he did it.
Travolta may have been planning on blowing up the helicopter himself, but Jackman just saved him the trouble. The body would have been brought along in this case. Travolta stated and demonstrated that he would sacrifice innocent people to fight his cause.
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Bjorn Olav Nyberg

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Thanks guys, I missed the shot of Gabriel (or anyone) running down the stairwell.
You would have thought though that the rest of the terrorists would have become suspicious when they saw a dead body in the helicopter looking just like Travolta, but I guess they were prepared to "give their lives" or something...
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Todd Terwilliger

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I believe Travolta planned everything exactly the way it went, with the exception of the explosion. He made sure Jackman would see the rocket launcher on the bus, knowing he would use it to stop him. Travolta added even more motive by "killing" Ginger.
Also, don't forget, the escape helicopter was there when the bus landed. We assume it is empty but we are never shown that it is. It's another type of misdirection, we think the helicopter is empty but they could have put any number of things in it before we ever see it.
Gabriel is a great film villian. He reminds me of the Hans Gruber character from Die Hard, always thinking, planning, and one step ahead.
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