This week’s poll (well it turned out to be several weeks worth) was about what you thought the best surprise ending in a movie was. With 47% of the votes, the winner turned out to be Fight Club, starring Edward Norton and Brad Pitt. This poll has pushed us here at That Show Sucks to contemplate a little bit further about what makes a good surprise ending.
First off, it can’t be something predictable, duh… that wouldn’t be a surprise. By predictable, however, I really mean that a movie has to go where no other movie has gone before in order to get us to appreciate the surprise ending. “He was dead the whole time” or “they weren’t being haunted, they were haunting” have to be coming out of our mouths with excitement once we understand the plot twist of the century.
Typically, in my opinion, a great surprise ending has to be a little far-fetched. Take Prestige for example, (SPOILER) Batman becomes a magician and ends up having a twin who sacrifices himself so that Batman can get out of jail. Hugh Jackman, on the other hand, watched Star Wars II recently and manages to use technology to create clones and uses them in a trick, after which he kills them. Now, that’s cool and very very far-fetched, making it one of the best surprise endings in movie history.
The last element of a great surprise ending has to be the flashback revelation. Take Sixth Sense as this point’s example, (SPOILER, but come on, you really should have seen this movie by now) we find out that Bruce Willis is really dead the whole time. This ending fits our first two points of not being predictable at all and also being a tad far-fetched, okay really far-fetched. The part I enjoyed about this movie’s secret ending was how the presented the truth. The entire movie had been leading up to this one moment and had been dropping hints left and right that Bruce Willis is not alive. When you finally get past all the puke and blown up brains and make it to the end, you’re show flashbacks from the entire film to highlight the true surprise of Bruce’s current state.
We hope that you go and watch some movies with great surprise endings, and if you have any suggestions let us know in the comments section. Also, be warned, for every movie with a great ending, 22 are sure to follow that suck.