Ending a story is hard. It proves to be a daunting task to end a show, film or novel with a promising plot. As for films, aside from a well-written story, these are equipped with powerful theme and superb acting, only to slip just before the closing credit appears. Every now and then, a movie’s last act can be so disappointingly crafted that it leaves its audience in a state of confusion whether watching it from start to finish was worth it.
We have summed up a list on how good films still managed to come out on top even with flaws in the end, but again, it would have made a more positive impact if the final scenes were seamless in execution.
“Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull” (2008)
The “Indiana Jones” movie franchise would’ve been great if they stopped at the last film. But no, they decided to create another one and made up their minds that this will not be an introspective journey of Indy, but it will peppered with a lot of sci-fi aspects. People watched it mainly because of nostalgia, but that went right out of the window when those crystal skulls turned out to be some alien device and then went to turn Cate Blanchett’s brain to goo.
Imagine this for a plot. The sun is about die, and a small band of astronauts are tasked to re-ignite the sun to save mankind. Cool, eh? The film actually had a good storytelling foundation, as explore thoughts on space travel, a depiction of future with an integrated culture and our place in the universe. But just when these factors were being enjoyed by the moviegoers, it transformed itself into a slasher film, and a bad one at that. Even though the film is still recognized for all of the good things it has as a film, the final act just ruined it and dragged the movie’s quality.
“I Am Legend” (2007)
This is a clear case where the studio thought they knew better. This film, which was adapted from the novel of Richard Matheson, was praised for following the novel. But it failed once the movie studio thought that providing a more safe, sanitized, happily-ever-after ending was what the audience wanted. Wrong. So the studio made an alternate ending, which, guess what, loved by the audience not only because it was what they wanted, but it followed the logic of the story from the novel.
“The Signs” (2002)
Night Shyamalan is no stranger to making good movies with bad endings. And since he has a couple of films that should be in this list, let’s just focus on one. “Signs” proved to be a good film from a storytelling point of view. As it tells the story of a family being a witness to an impending alien invasion, viewers can see the gem that it could’ve been. But the execution of the final scenes in the film illustrated how it all went downhill.
One of the most beloved films also had a bad ending. This movie is touted to be one the best film versions of the Man of Steel. From the story and the acting, everything was going right for this movie. But when Lois Lane died, everybody thought of giving Superman temporal powers so he could reverse the events. Any Superman fan knows that this will never happen — ever. And that time-reversing thing he did was the movie’s kryptonite.
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