‘Japan’ Ending Explained & 2023 Movie Summary: Is Japan Dead Or Alive?

Raju Murugan’s Japan chronicles the story of Japan (Karthi), a genius thief skilled enough to break into any place with ease. Japan had a special interest in gold and diamonds and attracted scrutiny from the police following a robbery at a famous jewelry shop. Someone dug a big hole, entered the shop, and stole $200 crore worth of jewelry. The owner, Mitesh, begged the cops to recover his lost gold, stating that if they failed, he’d have no option but to commit suicide.


Spoilers Ahead

Who Are Sridhar And Karuppasamy?

The case became a top priority since the shop was co-owned by the home minister’s son-in-law, Sridhar (Sunil), and Karuppasamy was called to spearhead the case. Unlike Karuppasamy, Sridhar’s methods were unorthodox, and he didn’t shy away from using violence to align things his way. During their investigation, Sridhar and Karuppasamy found a golden coin with a peculiar insignia that suggested the robbery might’ve been Japan’s doing. Japan was a world-class thief and believed that he was the rightful owner of every gold bar in the world because only he was skilled and clever enough to steal them all. According to police reports, Japan was a master of disguise and could take on any appearance to fool anyone. This was exactly why Japan had never been caught, even after he left his signature gold coin (with his face on it) on every crime spot. In addition to thieving, Japan had a special interest in cinema and had multiple movies about his thieving exploits. Japan was never arrested for lack of evidence and thus had been roaming scot-free, making films, and acting like a celebrity. There were a total of 182 robbery cases levied against Japan, making him one of the most sought-after criminals. Thus, to recover the gold and apprehend Japan, a massive manhunt was started, led by Sridhar and Karuppasamy.


What Was Radhe Asked To Confess?

The police planned to not leave any stone unturned in catching Japan, even if they had to frame him as a cold-blooded killer. In none of Japan’s robberies had anyone died, but during the Royal Jeweler’s robbery, a North Indian security guard lost his life. Sridhar arrested Radhe and forced him to lie, saying that he had seen Japan kill a man. Sridhar said if he didn’t comply, he would gauge his eyes out and even gobble up the gold his wife had saved for their child’s education and future. Radhe didn’t want to lose the gold, as his wife had toiled herself for it. Radhe used to be an alcoholic and gambler, and he often squandered his wife’s savings. This irked his wife, and she left him. Drowning in guilt, Radhe decided to become a changed man and swore never to drink or gamble. But before he could meet his wife and kid, he was picked up by Sridhar’s team. 

Getting framed for murder was the least of Japan’s troubles. Easu, his loyal associate, betrayed him in greed for stolen gold. He joined forces with some gang to kill him and take all the gold. Japan had just learned that he had AIDS, and Easu figured, what good would the gold do to a dying man? In an unexpected turn of events, Japan beat his goons to a pulp and killed him. Japan didn’t murder innocent like the police made him out to be; he often distributed all his loot to the poor and the homeless, and the rest he kept for his films.


Did Japan Carry Out The Robbery At Royal Jewellers?

Japan paid a visit to Sanju (Anu Emmanuel), his lover-turned-actress. He had loved Sanju ever since they were kids. Japan also helped Sanju get her first acting break by sponsoring the movie using his stolen gold. When Sanju became a star, she forgot him, stated Japan. Thus, he infiltrated the set of her film to ask her why she broke his heart. However, little did Japan know that both Tamil Nadu and Kerala police had the same idea and set a trap for him. Japan cashed out on the disagreement between Tamil Nadu and Kerala Police and escaped with Sanju, highjacking her vanity van. However, Sridhar managed to get into the van. In reality, Sridhar had no intention of arresting Japan and told him that the minister had given him an ultimatum to capture him dead or alive and recover the gold. Sridhar asked him to return only one-third of the gold, and he would wrap up the case. This was where the truth came to light: the theft at Royal Jewellers didn’t have anything to do with Japan; someone else had copied his technique to frame him.

Who Framed Japan In The Royal Jewelers Robbery Case?

Japan shuffled through his memories to figure out which one of his enemies had framed him for the robbery. From CCTV footage, Japan figured out that it was Gangadharam who had convinced Easu to betray him. Gangadharam was one of the goons he had trained years ago. Since Gangadharam wasn’t answering their calls, Japan planned to bait him out. Thus, a rumor was spread that Japan had died in a shootout with police. Thinking the news to be legit, Inbam secured an audience with Gangadharam. Karuppasamy had the same idea and followed Gangadharam to the meeting spot. However, Gangadharam managed to escape in the shootout that soon followed. As for Karuppasamy, he was injured in a shootout and was taken to the hospital by Japan. There, Japan told him that everything was Gangadharam’s doing, and figuring they had the same enemy, they joined forces. Thanks to a bomb maker and drone operator, Karuppasamy and Japan infiltrated Ramji Nagar, Gangadharam’s homestead.


After everyone had bitten the dust, it was revealed that the jewelry heist was a commission project orchestrated by Mitesh. If you don’t remember, Mitesh was the owner of the Royal Jewellery Shop, which was plundered at the start of the film. But why would he plunder his own shop? Since the 1990s, Mitesh has been funding a political party for election expenses to earn big favors. For safety, he formed a strong partnership with the home minister’s son-in-law and a local leader, Abrar. But the last couple of years saw him incur heavy losses. This left him broke, and since the election was around the corner, he planned a fake robbery to maintain his influence in the party. However, the commissioner told Karuppasamy to keep this information secret until it was verified.

Why Did Japan Sacrifice Himself?

Sridhar’s plan was to get the video recording of his scandalous outings from Japan and frame Radhe, for all the crimes he had committed so far. For the uninitiated, Japan kept an entire dossier on the corrupt and insatiable cops of the department. Earlier, Japan had no problem with Radhe becoming his scapegoat, but the love he had for his wife and children reminded Japan of his mother’s love, which he had squandered away. Japan couldn’t fathom the guilt he would feel if an innocent family man died an unnecessary death. Japan ordered Sridhar to let Radhe go and kill him instead. Japan also shot Sridhar first to instigate him, and he was eventually shot and killed.


Japan was not born into a life of crime, as nobody is. The only reason he started stealing was to help his mother. Japan’s mother had pawned her wedding chain to pay for her son’s tuition, but the moneylender kept the chain after she missed paying a few installments. Thus, Japan dug a hole in the pawnshop and retrieved the chain, but his mother hated him for stealing. She took the blame on herself and was arrested. To get his mother out, Japan begged a lawyer, who, in return, asked him to dig another hole. This was followed by another hole he dug for another greedy man. Even after being released, Japan’s mother refused to talk to him till her dying day. Japan blamed himself for her death but eventually redeemed himself by saving Radhe’s life. In the end, he embraced death, hoping his mother would embrace him in the afterlife.

Rishabh Shandilya
Rishabh Shandilya
Rishabh considers himself a superhero who is always at work trying to save the world from boredom. In his leisure time, he loves to watch more movies and play video games and tries to write about them to entertain his readers further. Rishabh likes to call himself a dedicated fan of Haruki Murakami, whose books are an escape from his real being.


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