10 Hilariously Abrupt Movie Endings

One of the most difficult aspects of writing a story is the ending. Whether it’s movies, video games, or even novels, writers are often faced with a fairly monumental task when it comes to creating an ending that will close their story in a way that doesn’t leave a bad taste in their audience’s mouths.


RELATED: 10 movie endings who broke the rulesSometimes, however, these stories simply end. No questions answered, no time to make up, nothing. Most of the time it’s pretty funny, whether on purpose or not.

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‘Blood Debt’ (1985)

blood debt is an 80’s action movie that looks more like it was shot in the 70’s. This movie never really took off, mostly because it was awful. Luckily, there’s one redeeming quality: its outrageous ending.

The ending of the film is so absurd that it actually went viral on YouTube as a video titled “The Proper Way to End Your Film.” The clip shows the main character after being shot by the villain. Luckily, the protagonist has a trick up his sleeve. And by “trick” he means “flare gun”. He uses the flare gun to blow the villain to pieces. Well, usually movies would have a couple of minutes ending to bring the audience to a soft landing. But not blood debt. Instead of a falling plot or aftermath, the film freezes as the villain explodes, and a block of text appears announcing what happened to the hero following the events of the film. Then the credits roll.

“Monty Python and the Holy Grail” (1975)

Monty Python and the Holy Grail is a British comedy about King Arthur (Graham Chapman) and his Knights of Camelot in search of (who would have thought?) the Holy Grail. At the beginning of the film, these Knights of Camelot kill an innocent historian for no apparent reason while the old guy is making a documentary.

This, of course, leads to a police investigation, which is featured in several cutaways throughout the film. Towards the end, the remaining knights find the Holy Grail in a guarded castle. They prepare for battle, summoning a huge army that appears out of nowhere, but the battle is abruptly cut short before the main attack can begin. King Arthur’s karma eventually catches up with him and he and his knights are arrested by the police and the camera is shut down when an officer intercepts the cameraman.

‘Second Look’ (1992)

second look is a 1990s faith film that flew pretty far under the radar when it was first released. It’s a relatively cheesy movie about a boy named Danny (David AR White), who begins to question his beliefs as a teenager. The film is certainly not set up like a comedy. Although its ending is quite funny, although the filmmakers probably didn’t intend it that way.

By the end of the film, Danny has decided that he wants to become a Christian and he announces this by reaching out to his friend Scotty (John Jimerson) and uttering the incredibly vague but hilarious line, “Hey, Scotty…Jesus, man!” The film then uses the clichéd still image and uplifting musical ending that seemingly every ’90s teen movie has. The end how blood debtalso went viral on YouTube for exactly the same reasons: They’re both just so unintentionally funny.

“The Devil Within” (2012)

The devil inside is a rather terrifying found footage horror film allegedly based on a true story of demonic possession, namely the case of Isabella Rossi (Fernanda Andrade). It’s your standard mediocre horror flick, with cheap jump scares, sluggish pacing, and not a lot of interesting things happening. That is, until the end.

Aside from being a bit funny, the ending is also a bit insulting to viewers as it’s pretty goofy. The film ends when the main characters get into a car accident, after which the screen goes black. A website link emerges from the black screen of all things, apparently serving as an information center for those wanting more information about the Rossi estate. The best part? The website doesn’t even exist anymore. wump wump.

‘Birdemia: Shock and Terror’ (2010)

Birdemic: Shock and Terror gained quite a cult following through the internet. The main reason lies in its nonsensical storyline, wooden dialogue and ridiculously bad CGI. The plot focuses on a group of survivors traversing a world under attack by thousands of acid-spitting, bombing, and explosive birds. Why the birds behave this way is not explained.

The ending is pretty easy. The survivors have a hard time fighting off the birds, then suddenly the birds decide they’ve had enough and start flying away over the sea. Again without explanation. Then the credits roll while the survivors stare into the horizon. It’s almost as if the filmmakers forgot to write an ending and quickly cobbled it together and added it after the fact.

‘The Castle’ (1997)

There is a joke in the above Monty Python Film in which the characters find an inscription on a cave wall ending in “aaargh” and they assume whoever wrote it must have died before they finished it. As it turns out, that’s exactly what happened in this 1997 Austrian TV movie, based on a novel by Franz Kafka.

Kafka tragically died before he could finish the book. Several film adaptations have been made of his work, but filmmakers Michael Hanneke wanted to stay as true to the original as possible. This means that both the book and the film just end like that in the middle of a scene. However, the film went a millimeter further to insert a block of text explaining that Kafka was no longer writing. It’s a brief moment of unexpected gallows humor in such a serious story.

“The Muppets” (2011)

The Muppets are considered by many to be a timeless source of innocent comedy with a massive cast of wacky characters with outrageous personalities. The 2011 film introduced a new storyline in which the Muppets decide to return to the entertainment business and stage a reunion show to save their old studio from being taken over by an evil oil magnate named Tex Richman (Chris Cooper).

Several things go wrong during the show, including Gonzo (Dave Goelz) his arm gets stuck in a bowling ball as he tries to throw it, causing his arm to become stuck in a state of constant rotation. Fundraising for the show pours in, but unfortunately it’s not enough to save the studio, and the Muppets dejectedly head to the exit for one last musical number. During the post-credits musical number, Tex Richman begins to celebrate his victory. At the same time, Gonzo’s fingers are released and the bowling ball rushes toward Richman, sending him flying. The film then shows a brief newspaper clipping showing that Richman decided to let the Muppets take over the studio anyway, and that this decision was definitely not the result of a head injury caused by a specific flying bowling ball. It may not be the exact ending to the film, but it is a rather abrupt conclusion to the film’s main plot.

“The Simpsons Movie” (2007)

The Simpsons Movie is similar to the classic episodes of the TV series: hilarious but heartfelt at the same time. One of the funniest moments in the movie is when Homer (Dan Castellaneta) and beard (Nancy Cartwright) trying to re-shingle their roof. Homer tries to hammer in a nail, which of course ends up accidentally injuring himself.

The film’s final scene (or alternate ending in some versions) pays homage to the scene from earlier. The day is saved, the family is reunited and everything emotional is out of the way. It’s time for Homer and Bart to rebuild their home. When it comes time to clap the roof, Homer successfully hammers the nail…into his own leg. He stands up triumphantly only to realize he has a nail in his leg and oh look at that Yes, really hurts. He then runs around like a headless chicken, tearing open all the clapboards before falling off the roof. Cut to black and roll the credits.

“The Italian Job” (1969)

Perhaps the most famous abrupt film ending comes from the British crime comedy The Italian Job. The film revolves around a gold heist, all presented quite amusingly. With Michael Cain As the film’s protagonist, Charlie Croker, things go relatively well until the end.

The film ends on a literal cliffhanger as the van in which the thieves are transporting the gold drives down a winding mountain road and inevitably teeters on the edge. The gold is at one end, slowly sliding further away from the robbers as Croker tries desperately to save it. He then says he has an idea, but the audience never gets to see what it is since the film ends right then and there. In doing so, the filmmakers practically kidded their entire audience.

“Some Like It Hot” (1959)

Another classic crime comedy, this time directed by Bill Wilderthe history of Some like it hot is about two criminals who disguise themselves as women to escape from the police. One of those men on the run is Jerry (jack lemmon), beginning under the alias “Daphne”, attracts the attention of an aging millionaire named Osgood (Joe E Brown).

Eventually, during the hilarious misadventures, Jerry convinces Osgood to take him on his yacht. During the boat ride there, exhausted, Jerry removes his wig and reveals that he was actually a man the whole time. For most people, this would open up a whole new can of worms. At the very least, it should set up some sort of falling action. Luckily, Osgood isn’t most people and just shrugs and says, “Well, nobody’s perfect.” Almost like he knew it all along. The words “The End” then appear on screen and the credits roll.

READ MORE: From ‘The Truman Show’ to ‘Back to the Future’: The 10 Best Movie Dialogue Ending Lines

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Sarah Ridley

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