The Bikeriders: Exploring The Downfall Of Infamous Chicago Vandals Motorcycle Club

The Bikeriders tells the story of the Chicago Vandals motorcycle club's rise and fall from 1965 to 1973, featuring stars like Austin Butler, Tom Hardy, and Jodie Comer.

Updated on Jun 22, 2024  |  04:51 PM IST |  175.6K
Youtube/Focus Features
The Bikeriders Ending Explained (Youtube/Focus Features)

Spoilers Warning: Spoilers ahead for The Bikeriders movie. Reader discretion is advised. 

The Bikeriders is a movie that almost didn't make it to the big screen, but thanks to a few key factors, it did. It features a talented cast including Austin Butler, and Tom Hardy, and a standout performance from Jodie Comer.

Directed by Jeff Nichols, this is his first film since Midnight Special and Loving in 2016. The film was nearly lost after the WGA/SAG-AFTRA strikes last year causing it to lose its home at 20th Century Studios. Fortunately, Focus Features picked it up.

The Bikeriders introduces the 1960s story of the conflict between The Vandals club

Based on Danny Lyon's book, The Bikeriders tells the story of the Chicago Vandals motorcycle club from 1965 to 1973. The film follows Lyon (played by Mike Faist) as he interviews Kathy (Comer), the wife of Vandals member Benny (Austin Butler), about the club's journey under their tough leader Johnny (Tom Hardy). Johnny takes a liking to Benny, but as the club grows, it faces internal conflicts and new, more violent members.

The Vandals are fiercely loyal to each other. When Benny is attacked, the club retaliates brutally under Johnny's orders. However, the new members cause deadly confrontations, and longtime member Cockroach (Emory Cohen) is attacked and nearly killed.


This violence drives Benny to leave the club, pressured by Kathy who desires a safer, more stable life. Johnny had hoped Benny would take over the club, but Benny rejects both leadership and marital ties, choosing to ride away.

A young biker known as The Kid (Toby Wallace) is inspired by the Vandals but is initially rejected by Johnny. Years later, he returns and kills Johnny in a bid for leadership, leading the Vandals into a criminal gang.

Austin Butler's Benny reflects on the loss of Johnny

Upon hearing of Johnny's death, Benny reunites with Kathy and breaks down, realizing the end of the Vandals as he knew them.

In her final interview, Kathy reflects on the fates of the Vandals' old guard. Mechanic Cal (Boyd Holbrook) continues fixing bikes, while Funny Sonny (Norman Reedus) promotes Easy Rider. Cockroach becomes a motorcycle cop, and Zipco (Shannon's character) works on a shrimp boat.


The film ends with Benny settling down with Kathy, but he still yearns for his days with the Vandals, hinting at the ongoing conflict between his past and present life.

The Bikeriders is now playing in theaters.

ALSO READ: Carol Burnett Cements Legacy At TCL Chinese Theatre With Handprints Ceremony; Details Inside

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