An open-ending climax is a film technique that leaves an audience feeling ambiguous about the outcome of the film. It has no evident meaning but left open to interpretation. Movies with open endings always intrigue us to make theories & create our own conclusion for the story. In other words, watching an open ending climax is a subjective judgment & everyone forms their own perception. However, the director is the only person who knows the true conclusion and underlying subtext of the context.
We have a lot of movies with open endings & cliffhangers that left us dumbfounded which still some cinephiles talk about it & write their theories on the internet & fascinate other people. Recently, I’ve come across a new theory on the prestige ending & it was so sensible that actually made me believe that was the case. Just like that, we have a number of open ending movies that hunt you & make you think about it.
Here, we’ve compiled a list of the 10 best open ending movies that will leave you stunned.
( PS: I’m a huge fan of open ending movies, here’s my own list. Also, the list is in no particular order )
Talk about open ending movie, Inception comes first. Inception is by far the best open ending movie directed by Christopher Nolan. Every person was bowled over the climax and still wonder the interpretation. It has not only an enigmatic ending but also a solid science fiction theme that keeps you hooked to the screen. Inception is a sci-fi film that has a separate fan base and regarded to be the best work from Nolan after the dark knight. Leonardo DiCaprio has given a phenomenal performance along with supporting actors. If you’re looking for a mind boggling movie. You’re highly recommended to watch Inception.
IMDb Rating: 8.8/10
Cast: Leonardo DiCaprio, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Ellen Page, and more..
Plot: Inception movie is about A thief who steals secrets through dream-sharing technology is given the task of inserting an idea into the CEO’S mind for business purposes.
Prisoners will absolutely leave you astounded at the end. It is directed by brilliant filmmaker Denis Villeneuve. His movies are mostly explored darker aspects with great underlying themes. You may not notice metaphors in the first watch, but the details would surprise you sooner or later you rewatch the film again. It will introduce you tropes & similes the more you look deeply. Likewise, The movie prisoners is like an enigma. You have to decipher while watching it & comprehend the narrative while enjoying the performances of two amazing actors Hugh and Jake.
IMDb Rating: 8.1/10
Cast: Hugh Jackman, Jake Gyllenhaal, Viola Davis , and more..
Plot: Keller Dover’s daughter and her friend go missing. Their fathers search on their own when police seem oblivious about the case.
2001: A Space Odyssey
When we are talking about ambiguous endings, 2001 A Space Odyssey has to be discussed. It’s the sci-fi gem directed by Stanley Kubrick. It’s the very first movie that comes with a lot of enigmatic meanings and tropes. In the first 30 mins, you feel like ” is this a silent film ” But as you watch, the film will absorb your mind & eventually left you staggered. The film is so thought-provoking that explored the universe, god, origins & other surreal aspects. Stanley Kubrick has been an inspiration to filmmakers & still, his films resonate in this era as well.
Nonetheless, Here’s a short suggestion, ” BE PATIENT ”
IMDb Rating: 8.3/10
Cast: Keir Dullea, Gary Lockwood, William Sylvester, and more..
Plot: After discovering mysterious remnants underneath the lunar surface, humanity sets off on a quest to find the origins with the help of artificial intelligence.
Memento is the most unconventional and distinctive movie ever made in entire cinema history. It is one of the best thriller movies that makes you watch again and again. The reason? The entire movie narration is backward. You will see scenes of which are prior to the scenes. It is a non-linear narrative that challenges you to grasp the details. Every time I watch this film, i always feel like ” God I want to edit the movie.” I gotta give big props to Nolan for such a unique idea, Memento is also a film that I consider as one of the best Christopher Nolan’s works. If you’re looking for a completely different cinema experience, watch this open ending film right away.
IMDb Rating: 8.4/10
Cast: Guy Pearce, Carrie-Anne Moss, Joe Pantoliano, and more.
Plot: A person with short-term memory ( who can’t make new memories ever since his wife’s death) investigates his wife’s murderer.
Parasite is an Oscar winner for the best picture in 2019. It is not only a thriller movie, But a movie that discusses social & class aspects with a bunch of metaphors. From the right beginning to the ending, I assure you will stick to the screen and get blown away at the conclusion. The man who is behind this masterpiece is Boon Joon-ho, the director of Parasite, also the winner of the best director who has a marvelous filmography even before the parasite. Among, parasite is a hell of a movie that leaves you ambiguous which makes this one of the best open ending movies.
IMDb Rating: 8.6/10
Cast: Kang-ho Song, Sun-Kyun Lee, Yeo-Jeong Jo and more.
Plot: A poor family ( The Kims ) inhabits rich family’s ( The parks ) house with deception. But, their easy life in the house becomes a threat and faces a lot of risks.
Shutter Island is certainly a dark and grim suspense thriller. Do you know what’s the best thing about this movie? It’s the jaws dropping climax. I assume every person who watched the film definitely must have startled for a min and say what the f*ck? It is directed by legendary filmmaker, Martin Scorsese who made masterpieces like Goodfellas, The Wolf of the wall street, and Taxidriver. Martin has a lot of fan base when it comes to his filmography. Out of it, shutter island is all about a mystery that reveals & throws you away. Kudos to Leonardo Dicaprio and Mark Ruffalo who have given splendid performances.
Cast: Leonardo DiCaprio, Emily Mortimer, Mark Ruffalo, and more..
Plot: In 1954, U.S Marshal and his partner track downs a criminal who is disappeared from the psychiatric sanatorium.
OldBoy is a korean film, but seriously it is one of the greatest & darkest endings in cinema history. The film is defined by revenge, raw emotion, gritty, and gore. The storyline, narration, and acting are the major assets of this film. Chan-wook Park, the director, deserves accolades for the incredible work. Watch this movie, if you love Korean dramas that depart with an open ending.
IMDb Rating: 8.4/10
Cast: Min-Sik Choi, Ji-Tae Yoo, Hye-Jeong Kang and more.
Plot: Oh Dae-Su who is released after being imprisoned for 15 years finds his captor for vengeance.
Gone Girl is undoubtedly the best psychological thrillers of all time. It is directed by David Fincher who made exceptional movies like Fight Club and Seven. If you have seen his works, then you must have guessed how gone girl is gonna be about. As it’s a Fincher movie, it will have deeper aspects that spin in all the ways in your mind. Similarly, with the gone girl, make you uncomfortable with amazing open ending
IMDb Rating: 8.1/10
Cast: Ben Affleck, Rosamund Pike, Neil Patrick Harris, and more.
Plot: Nick Dunne, realizes that the entire media attention has shifted on him that he may not be innocent in his wife’s disappearance.
American psycho is rather a horrific psychotic film that terrifies you in several scenes. The best thing about this movie is Christian bale’s performance and Narration. These both would put you on edge of the seat and enjoy this intensive horror genre. With each min, the movie gets elevated and holds your spellbound along the open ending. If you love crime horror genre, you should never miss Christian bale’s brilliant performance in American Psycho.
IMDb Rating: 7.6/10
Cast: Christian Bale, Justin Theroux, Josh Lucas, and more.
Plot: A wealthy bank executive hides his psychopath face from his co-associates and friends.
Black Swan is surely one of the best noir thriller movies with an excellent cliffhanger. It’s a psychological thriller that may put in a melancholy mood. Especially, it is very well accoladed for the dark open ending climax. Natalie Portman performed brilliantly and won the best actress at the academy. The film also received accolades for Best Picture, Best Cinematography, Best Film Editing, and Best Director. I guess that makes you watch this noir feature.
IMDb Rating: 8.0/10
Cast: Natalie Portman, Mila Kunis, Vincent Cassel, and more.
Plot: After winning the lead role in Tchaikovsky’s “Swan Lake” performance, a dedicated dancer struggles to preserve her mental stability.
Honorable Mentions :
- A Serious man
- Take Shelter
- The Shining
- The Wrestler
- The Graduate
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