Movies Endings Misunderstood:
Some movies are made to have many interpretations. But there can be only one message any movie could give. Many times people make that mistake of not being able to identify the message in question.
Arrival is one of the greatest science fiction flicks of this century. And for good reason! Just like the language of the heptapods, the plot is also a circle. The language of the Heptapods leads the lead protagonist to discover the way they view time. Unlike humans who see time as linear, the Heptapods see time as a circle, an infinite loop. The past and the future are connected and not isolated. The very beginning of the movie and the ending of the movie signify this interpretation. The beginning shows us the death of Louise’s daughter. That is not a flashback but a flash-forward. By the end of the movie, it is clear that Louise’s daughter’s death has not happened yet. The message that the movie ending was giving was not a twist but how they incorporated the Heptapods’ Knowledge into the overall plot.
The cheerful and happy Wilson Family is attacked by a group of Wilson Family doppelgangers. These doppelgangers attack the Wilsons and are hell-bent on replacing them. Later it is revealed that the Doppelgangers come from a place called the Underground, where doppelgangers of every person in the real world exist. Adelaide steps into the mirror maze and gets into the Underground and discovers a stark twist in the tale – she is her-self a doppelganger. Somehow when she was a kid, she escaped the Underground and replaced the real Adelaide. The movie ending explains why real Adelaide became the Clone army’s leader since she was the only one who can talk. This was basically just a revenge tale.
3. Vanilla Sky
Not many could work the magic of a well written psychological thriller movie like Cameron Crowe did with Vanilla Sky. Tom Cruise plays the lead role in this movie. He is haunted by lucid nightmares where he sees his lost love Juliana. The psychologist has the most difficult job – figure out which part of his tale is the truth. What David does remember is that he employed the services of the Life Extension Company to freeze him. People who are frozen will be injected with dream sequences. David is given a choice – whether to opt-out of the dream and live in the real world or give in and keep going through it over and over again. David’s choice of opting out symbolizes that he has decided to take charge of his actions and not play someone else play his cards for him.
Probably one of the most famous movie endings of all time, Inception reserves a special place in our heart. The movie is about people trying to hack a billionaire son’s brain by the process of inception – planting a thought within his mind via the power of dreams so that when he wakes up, that thought could take root and become what he himself starts to desire. Using advanced technology, Dom and his crew can access another person’s dream and play a role within it. At the end of that movie, we see Dom spinning a top to see whether he is still in one. The audience keeps wondering whether that Top stopped spinning or did it keep going on. But that is not the essence of Inception’s ending. By the time the scene moves on to show the Top, Dom had already moved out of his room, mingling with his family. The ending was that reality is subjective and Dom had accepted where he was, dream or not.
5. Bird Box
Some say that the way the movie deviated from the novel’s ending was a travesty that can never be undone. Although that argument has some merits, we beg to differ when people claim that the movie’s ending had no meaning. Mallory had lived all his life by stealing herself up. She had built a solid boundary around herself into which nobody else was allowed to come in. At the ending of the movie, Mallory has to start learning to love. She has to start trusting others. In the end, Mallory had to break the cage she had built for herself. To defeat the monsters, Mallory had to break down her Bird Box.
6. Nocturnal Animals
Susan is the proud owner of an art gallery. She receives a manuscript from her Ex-Husband, a relationship that ended very ugly. After going through the script, Susan realizes that her husband is a very talented writer. Edward, Susan’s Ex-Husband re-mesmerizes Susan, who is now begging Edward to meet her again. Susan chooses a rather expensive restaurant as the venue. Edward never shows up. Susan realizes Edward was never going to show up. The reason Susan ended the marriage was that she believed Edward was not up to her standards. Edward showed her that his inner world is way more beautiful than the real world Susan lives in. Edward actually avenged him-self. This was a classic act of vengeance storyline played out subtly within the words of a talented writer.
The story revolves around a guy named Joel who is trying to erase the memories of a past relationship he had with a girl named Clem. Halfway through the process, Joel realizes he does not want to go through with it. He tries to do everything possible to ransack the process. The movie has a rather ambiguous ending as well. Some claim that Joel and Clem just keep on repeating the process because the movie has a very dark take on the institution of relationships. Some say they finally had their happily ever after. But the point of the movie’s ending was not whether they kept going on or left it as it is. Joel discovers that no matter what he finds in the future, he likes the memories of his past. The joy of making good memories outweighs the risk of encountering bad ones.
8. American Sniper
Now, this is a movie that has been overanalyzed by many and not for the right reasons. American Sniper reveals how war can change a soldier’s mind from within, making it a hollow shell. The repercussions of are carried back by the veterans to their normal civilian life. Based on the actual US Soldier Chris Kyle, a celebrated sniper, the movie became a topic of hot political discussions later on. One faction said that it showed why America should refrain from sending soldiers to the Middle East. Some said the ending meant that there was a bigger threat in Central and Middle East Asia and they need to send more troops to fight back. But the fact of the matter is – the movie’s ending signifies nothing. The Director of the movie, Clint Eastwood, has said that people should stop calculating the conclusion and just enjoy a good old biopic for once.
9. American Psycho
The 2000 movie American Psycho was one of the most controversial movies of its time. The movie was blamed to have glorified the life and actions of a pure psychopath played by Christian Bale. The viewers believed that the entire plot right until the ending of the movie was being played on from the perspective of the serial killer protagonist. The people started believing that this meant the action of Bale’s character was being celebrated. But the ending of the movie did not warrant such a meaning. Easton Ellis, the writer of the Novel of the same name, wanted people to see the world from the point of view of a stone-cold killer so that they can see for themselves how vile a person Patrick Bateman is.
10. 10 Cloverfield Lane
This is one of the best science fiction suspense movies ever made. 10 Cloverfield Lane tells the tale of a deranged survivalist named Howard who traps and abuses a woman by the name of Michelle. Howard states that alien conquerors have taken over the world and his bunker is the last safe haven. Michelle does not believe him and she finally escapes the bunker, only to be attacked by aliens in the end. This proves Howard was right. Many thought that the movie’s ending was a cheap shot at them trying to swerve a suspense thriller into action territory. But the ending signified something more than that. Michelle had finally broken free of not just Howard’s clutches but also decided to no longer be preyed upon. She decided to join the resistance. Michelle had decided to fight back.