The end of a movie is really the capture point for a member of the audience if they are thinking about buying a movie. Many films wrap up with a terrible, colossal waste-of-time ending (Brothers (2009)), and many others deliver a fantastic ending that makes people say aloud “whoa.” These are, in my opinion, the ten best movie endings of all time. (p.s., Tarantino is on here 4 times.)
15. Daft Punk’s Electroma – Directors: Daft Punk – Hero Robot #2 sets himself on fire shortly after Hero Robot #3 has Hero Robot #2 flip the switch on #1’s back causing a self-destruct which blows him up. #2 is running aflame through the desert as Daft Punk music plays in the background.
14. Solaris – Director: Andrei Tarkovsky – Father and son unite as the camera backs out and shows that they are in the middle of the ocean on Solaris.
13. Planet of the Apes (1968) – Director: Franklin J. Schaffner – Heston end up going back to Earth, and he finds that he was THERE THE WHOLE TIME! And he also finds that the Statue of Liberty is half-submerged in the ground.
12. The Usual Suspects – Director: Bryan Singer – Not the twist, but the very end. Kobayashi is working for Verbal, who is actually Keyser Soze. Kujan runs outside to try to find him but cannot. You don’t know what is real and what isn’t.
11. Memento – Director: Christopher Nolan – Leonard turns out to be Sammy Jankis, and he accidently killed his wife because of his memory problem, but he makes himself think that his friend who is a detective that helped him kill some people before so that he can feel better, is actually his wife’s killer, which is what happens in the beginning, which is the end, in chronological order.
10. Reservoir Dogs – Director: Quentin Tarantino – The whole everyone dies clause is perfect for this film since it is less scattered but more complex than the Pulp Fiction idea. Mr. Orange is lying in the hands of Mr. White as the police come in, and when Mr. White realizes that Mr. Orange is a cop, Mr. White shoots him, and then the police unload on him as the screen cuts to black.
9. Inglourious Basterds – Director: Quentin Tarantino – Aldo Raine cuts a swastika into the head of Hans Landa and proclaims to Utivich that he thinks the swastika he carved into Landa “might just be my masterpiece.” Then the screen goes black and reveals the trademark yellow font that Tarantino is associated with.
8. Pontypool – Director: Bruce McDonald – The government announces a 10 second countdown for a bomb and as it hits one, Sydney kisses Mazzey and the screen goes black. The after-credits coda was something that can be interpreted in many different ways, and I’ll leave it to you, the viewer, to decide.
7. Avatar – Director: James Cameron – Jake Sully opens his eyes in his Avatar body from his soul being transfered by Eywah.
6. Primal Fear – Director: Gregory Hoblit – You find out that Aaron was really Roy because Roy made up the identity of Aaron. He really did murder the archbishop and his girlfriend, but the trial is over, and Aaron (Roy) only had to go to an evaluation for mental illness since the trial was over. Vail walks outside to a road and just stops as the camera turns black.
5. Easy Rider – Director: Dennis Hopper – This films ending is very sad and good. Hippy-haters shoot Billy after he flips them off in their truck, and when Wyatt goes for help, the hippy-haters shoot at him and hit his gas tank, blowing his bike up and showing that their journey had finally ended.
4. TIE:
>The Blair Witch Project – Directors: Daniel Myrick & Eduardo Sanchez – After going down the stairs, Mike is found standing facing the corner of the room. Heather drops the camera and screams, and as the screams die out, the camera goes out.
>Donnie Darko – Director: Richard Kelly – Donnie has died since it is the only way to save everyone, and Gretchen rides her bike over to the house where the airplane turbine fell into their house, and she waves to Donnie’s mom. It shows Gretchen waving for a moment longer, and then it blacks out.
3. Fight Club – Director: David Fincher – Edward Norton kills Tyler and then watches as Project Mayhem begins, the buildings around them collapsing. Marla and he hold hands and watch as the buildings fall to the tune of Where is My Mind by The Pixies.
2. TIE.
>Vanilla Sky – Director: Cameron Crowe – Tom Cruise jumps off of the building, and his eye opens to the noise of Penelope Cruz’s voice, which in the beginning was a dream. So it is a dream inside of a dream inside of a dream… or is it?
>The Departed – Director: Martin Scorsese – Mark Wahlberg kills Matt Damon, and a rat runs across his windowsill. Booyah.
1. Kill Bill Vol. 1 – Director: Quentin Tarantino – Bill reveals that Beatrix’s (which you find out is her name in the sequel) daughter is alive.