‘The System’ Ending, Explained: Was Terry Able To Take Down The Warden?

“The System” is the latest movie directed and authored by Dallas Jackson and stars “Fast & The Furious” alum Tyrese Gibson along with Jeremy Piven, Terrance Howard, Ric Reitz, and Laura Aleman. “The System” follows Terry Savage, a former marine, who is forced to go undercover when he’s arrested during a drug bust. The movie is a one-time watch but masterfully showcases the corrupt facet of the administrative system, where those are sitting in highchairs control and mold other’s life for their own benefit. The movie depicts Terry’s struggles as he battles with the corrupt system to get back to his ill daughter. 


Spoilers Ahead

‘The System’ Plot Synopsis: What Happens In The Film?

The movie begins with Terry Savage, a former marine fighting his way to an illegal drug factory. Given his military training, Terry effortlessly combats scores of men and steals a ton of cash; however, he is apprehended by the cops soon after. 


Back at the Precinct, Commissioner Clarke asks Terry why a former marine is beating up drug dealers and throwing away his military career for a life of crime. Terry was dismissed after serving his country and is struggling to make ends meet. He was thrown out of his house for not paying rent and is forced to live in the projects, unable to afford food and daily needs. The commissioner offers Terry a get-out-of-jail pass and presents him with a deal. The commissioner wanted Terry to go undercover in prison located on the outskirts of the town, which has been turned into a private corporation. Clark tells Terry about the jail warden who thinks he’s above the law and sponsors criminals in return for the big prize. He continues that the prison is impenetrable from the outside and only a handful of guards and employees are allowed inside, and the Warden is protected by scores of men who’re rumored to be ex-military. Basically, Clark wants Terry to go incognito and obtain as much evidence as he can against the Warden so he can be put behind bars. Terry was a decorated marine and didn’t beat around the bush. He realized what Clark was asking of him was a death sentence. His time as a marine has taught him that crooks and criminals aren’t very kind towards cops and snitches, and if caught, he’ll be dead, so he denies it but agrees when the commissioner alludes to his daughter, who is suffering from a serious medical condition. Clark promises that the state will take care of all the medical expenses if he helps the authorities take down the Warden. 

The Prison’s Dungeon

The mission begins, and Terry arrives at the institution as a prisoner, and the only way he can contact Clark is through an encrypted cell phone he finds in his jail cell. Prisons have the habit of testing one’s strength, and Terry needs to prove his in order to ladder up the hierarchy. Terry faces his first prison scuffle when a group barges into his cell intending to kill him but is aided by another prison Bones, played by “Empire alum Terence Howard.” Terry is brought in front of the Warden, who reveals that he is running a corporation, not a prison, and offers Terry to work as a fighter in his dungeon if he wants to be free and get back to his daughter. After arriving in his new cell, Terry makes friends with Bones, who introduces him to the ways of prison, and the skills to survive the dungeon. From what we’ve seen so far, the dungeon appears to be basically a private fighting arena to entertain the Warden and his friends, like the one seen in the “Byoka” trilogy where men fight one another to death, and in return, the Warden keeps them off the trouble and makes their life a little easier compared to other prisoners. But they’ll still be prisoners, just the ones who can use their fists without any consequence. Both Terry and Bones are a part of the dungeon and spend every Friday in the same manner. The fighting begins, and soonTerry establishes himself as one of the deadliest fighters in the dungeons but is often troubled by another dungeon fighter, Freeway, who asks him to stay out of his way. We learn that Freeway and Terry are alike in more ways than one. Both grew up fighting in the streets and are former marines. The only thing that separates Terry from him is that he is fighting for his daughter, and Freeway is desperate to earn his freedom. 


Freeway & Terry

Freeway never liked Terry as he was stealing all the attention that he used to receive earlier, and this didn’t bode well with Freeway’s men, who took the matter into their own hands and attacked Terry, severely wounding Gina in the process. Terry saves Gina and is appreciated by the Warden. Lucas then calls Freeway and his men into the dungeon and shoots and kills two of his men for breaking his rules. Freeway is the Warden’s best fighter and is ordered to clash feast with Terry in the next dungeon fight. Terry is slowly earning his place in the dungeon and simultaneously garnering evidence against the Warden to take down his private prison. 

The day arrives, and both top dogs are ready to face one another in the arena. The bell rings, and the battle begins. Freeway is younger and faster than Terry, and at the outset, rain punches the latter but eventually, Terry emerges victorious. Both Terry and Freeway are fighting for something that they desperately want. Terry is forced to fight for the sake of his daughter, while Freeway wishes to go free and live the rest of the days enjoying the sun. Bones often helps Terry because, in some way, he sees himself in Terry. Bones has been jailed for killing the psychopath that tried to rape his sister and holds Terry in high regard and respects him for looking out for his family. 


‘The System’ Ending Explained: Was Terry Able To Take Down The Warden?

Warden chooses Terry as his NO. 1 man after he defeats Freeway and shows him his illegal drug racket, and asks him to join him, but Terry refuses. Terry believes that he’s finally earned his freedom, but the movie is yet to reveal its biggest twist. In reality, Commissioner Clark has always been an accomplice of the illegal drug racket and has set up Terry to fight for his partner in crime, warden Lucas. Terry and Bones decide to take down Clark and Lucas and begin enlisting prisoners to fight with them. Meanwhile, Terry smuggles the evidence out of prison through Janette. 

The fight is set, and the wager is measured at 100k. Terry faces a fighter who is considerably larger than him but has no choice but to fight. Terry struggles but soon knocks down his opponent. Meanwhile, all the guards join forces and initiate a planned riot. Lucas tries to slip in but is blocked by Terry and is shot when the DEA intervenes. Jenette visits Terry and informs them that the state has pardoned his sentence and has promised to cover her daughter’s medical expenses. Terry has finally earned his freedom and can go back to his daughter. Terry bids his farewell to his only friend, Bones, who asks him to take care of himself when he is on the other side of the bar. 


We often hear or read about the marines who, after leaving the military, suffer to make ends meet. They’re unable to afford food, medications, and help, and Terry is one such example. His daughter was suffering from a severe illness, and Terry was forced to become the menace he was once trained to fight. His skills, perseverance, and needs place him in Lucas’ and Clark’s crosshairs, who decide to use him as their pawn to fight their dungeon battles. Men like Lucas and Clark often abuse their power and facilities for their own benefit, while men like Terry, Freeway, and Bones are left to suffer in silence and are forced to do their dirty job. After getting out, Terry sends Jenette to help Bones and Freeway, who are also the victims of the corrupt system like he once was. 

“The System” is a 2022 action thriller film directed by Dallas Jackson.

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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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