Can An Ending Ruin a Film?

Why can a bad few minutes destroy a good couple of hours?

Donate to this week’s charity here

About Doug Walker

Creator of 5 Second Movies, Nostalgia Critic, Bum Reviews and more.


  1. NC could you do a review for the movie kingdom of heaven somtime this month or possibly feburary of 2017?

    • The Real Silverstar

      NC’s videos are typically planned months in advance, and like everyone else, Doug and crew have schedules to adhere to; the stuff he’s got planned for November (like his newest commercials review video) are likely already in process of being filmed and/or ready to roll, so it’s too late to make requests for this month. Even if that weren’t the case, there’s no guarantee that Doug has seen the film, has the same passion for it and shares your opinion on it.

      This is why I’m always saying that people should get a camera and make their own video reviews instead asking of asking someone else to do it. New talent has to come from somewhere, and we shouldn’t expect Doug Walker to review everything under the sun.

  2. If Kubrick made A.I. people would praise the ending.

    And how exactly is Stane botched in the first Iron Man?

  3. I actually liked the ending to Now You See Me, though I maintain the stance that Matrix Reloaded was a good movie right up until Matrix Revolutions came out. Also, Oceans Twelve’s ending completely ruins it’s rewatchability factor.

    • Yes thank you!

      The matrix Reloaded is not a bad movie. It’s actually got some interesting concepts and one of the best high speed chase scenes in any movie to this day.

      The problem was, because we knew both sequels were being made together, it felt like a “bridge film” and then Revolutions was so bad the bridge felt like it led us from Awesome Town to Crapsville.

  4. What ? Some people dislike Vader’s reveal in ROTJ ? But it’s awesome !!

    • Seems like ROTJ is a movie millenials and internet film critics want to retroactively dismiss and dislike. We all know how some people hate the Ewoks, but this is the first time I’ve heard of people not liking the reveal of Vader. I thought it was awesome, he was a broken, disfigured, sad old man under the armor and commanding voice.

  5. Probably it doesn’t make a difference to you, as you mention something similar with War of the Worlds…but Secret Garden’s twist was present in the original novella too, and it originally was published in 1990 so it definitely pre-dates Sixth Sense.

    Usual Suspects is a good example of an ending improving a movie. I also think “Cry_Wolf” had one of those endings that made the movie worth while.

    In my opinion what is always worse than a bad ending is “no ending”. Even if an ending is bad, at least it actually IS an ending and the story is over. For me it’s way worse when a series just gets left hanging with no resolution at all. Then I feel like it;s not worse watching at all.

    Yay! TMNT 2, can’t wait to see that video!

  6. Hey! You already found a Vessel replacement?! Wow! Anyways, for me, the only example of when I hated a ending was the first Captain America movie. However, it didn’t ruin the whole movie for me. It just ruins the last 9 minutes for me and that’s when I start surfing the Internet so I don’t have to listen to that awful awful awful last line. UGH! The Iron movie endings have never bothered me. I like the ending of Return of the Jedi.

  7. I thought Into Darkness was weak throughout the whole thing.

  8. The ending of this video…huh. Well, I might just actually have something to look forward to next week. Certainly I’m not going to have anything else.


  9. I’m not sure if it did this for anyone else, but the movie that did this for me was The Lovely Bones.

    I won’t spoil the ending, but the plot felt like it was wrapping up nicely in the last few minutes…and then it didn’t. Add in that the resolution for the “villain” in the film felt too anti-climactic to me, and the whole scene involving what finally did happen to him left an extremely sour taste in my mouth.

    And it’s a shame too. The movie had some decent visual effects, and the characters were, for the most part, enjoyable. But that ending completely ruined it for me.

    Also, can’t wait for next week’s review. Getting the AVGN and Andre in one review is going to be epic!

  10. Oh good. I thought he was actually gonna ruin the endings to some movies I haven’t seen yet. But it turns out it’s not that kind of video.

  11. I really liked the movie Edge of Tomorrow, but the last ten seconds of the movie completely ruin the movie a bit for me, like literally if the movie ended 10 seconds earlier it would be one of my favorite movies. The point where the main character laughs seems so out of character, it ruined the movie for me a little bit. I’m being completely serious, it just tore me out of the film.

  12. Yup, an ending can ruin an entire movie/game/TV show/anime. I know one anime that had a really promising plot, but the ending ruined it all. It was going to be a 8or9/10 but then it turned into a 7 because of the ending.

    But I can’t wait for next week.
    hi I’m Andre and I’m a Black Nerd with a review for yoooooouuuuuu!!!

  13. Personally, I felt the final minutes of Pokemon: The First Movie ruined it for me. Yeah, part of the problems (i.e. the stupid anti-violence message) can be blamed on 4Kids. However, the other things that I didn’t like in terms of the ending (i.e. Ash’s Disney Death, Mewtwo mind wiping everyone and sending them back in time to the point where everyone was meeting up in the docks) were there in the original version as well.

  14. Yeah… NC covered it perfectly.

    Thought I thought that the twist in Dark Knight Rises was just fine, great in fact. Especially how looking back, it not only made sense; the twist was actually in your face the whole time.

    Okay, Bruce Wayne just coming back out of the blue was stupid, but you know there’s meant to be an explanation there… I do hope Nolan releases another cut of TDKR and the only reason why the film wasn’t as good as it could have been was because the Joker wasn’t in it… No, seriously, even Nolan himself said the film isn’t the way he wanted it to be because of that. He’s still happy with the final product, but he knows it’s second best without Ledger.

  15. Don’t laugh, just don’t.

    “AquaMarine” has a shitty ending.
    No, I’m being serious here. Just listen.
    I had to watch this absurd movie 4 or 5 times while taking care of my niece.
    The movie is just absurd fantasy throughout almost the entire movie, which is OK.
    But then they have the ending where it’s “OK, we’re back to reality now. I have to move away forever. That’s life.”
    What the hell was up with that?
    They should have had an ending that was just as much absurd fantasy as the rest of the movie.
    (I honestly don’t know why I’m still thinking about this dumb movie. There really must be something wrong with me).

  16. Black Nerd trying blend in behind a black lamp…XD Truly a ninja master!

  17. Okay, what is wrong with the ending of War of the Worlds? Is it the aliens dying from Earth’s germs? Or is it the son surviving the battle at the farmhouse? I agree the latter is stupid. The former is great.

  18. Whoa, whoa, whoa…
    Slow down Doug…The Usual Suspects just a standard crime drama?

    It’s a slick thriller, yet it never overindulges in style over substance. The whole movie builds up to that twist ending, so it doesn’t come out of nowhere, and it’s filled with some really great performances from a solid cast.

  19. I was actually expecting a mention of the ending to Pay it Forward, given the title image, but then I found out I was mixing up Haley Joel Osmont films. Pity, because that is probably the poster example of a movie that was ruined for me by the ending. Spider-Man 2’s ending blows monkey chunks too though.

  20. Brotherhooves Social. Cute, suck, suck, cringey, suck, amazing heartwarming ending that justifies it’s existence.
    IMO, The Iron Giant. Slow, boring, did not give a shit, would not bother watching again, cried like a bitch at the climax.

    • Oh! And Homestuck. Amazing webcomic, great music, great animation (one thing I can definitely praise the ending for, holy shit. It literally turns into an anime.) great characters, interesting setting and mechanics. but when the hiatuses started to hit, things started sliding downhill fast.

      End of Act 6 was great, but then Act 7 proceeds to end the comic with half the cast, including the ones who just had plot development related powerups, just _disappear_. Everything is left ambiguous with the villain never being shown defeated. (And please don’t try to argue to me the whole “but the point is that he is defeated by ending the story” theory because that’s even more disappointing than leaving it unresolved.)

  21. Hmm, Vidme player…Definitely like it better than Daily Motion. About on par with YouTube I think. Certainly meets with my approval. And of course, another awesome video Critic. Looking forward to the turtle related suffering!

  22. What was the twist ending in The Dark Knight Rises? That Miranda Tate was Talia al Ghul? That she was the child being talked about throughout the movie, not Bane? Neither of those twists were really all that game changing. That Batman actually survived the ending? It was left somewhat ambiguous if he’d really died, so that should have been at least half expected.

  23. Yeah, a bad ending can totally destroy anything, but sometimes it’s what comes after the ending. Ghostbusters 2016 was on its way to be an average, not-good, not-bad movie for me and then that godawful song started over the credits… took me 15 Ray Parker Jr.’s to calm myself down.

  24. “It was all a dream” ending destroys a movie for me every single time.

    • The Real Silverstar

      For me it’s “We’ve gone through this amazing, growing experience together, but now I’m gonna erase your memory of all of it so everything can return to ‘normal’ and no one will have gained or learned anything”. I know that’s more of a TV cliche than a movie one, but it still never fails to get right up my craw.

  25. That Indie Reviewer

    Throughout ‘Pans Labyrinth’, I was only mildly impressed by its story and visuals, with no real surprises coming my way. Now, this was mainly due to portions of the film like the villain and the creatures being spoiled for me. But that ending, my God, that changed everything for the film, giving it an entirely new layer of depth to both the character and fantasy aspect.

  26. I think an ending ruins a movie due to how it changes (and affects) our perception of everything prior to it.
    The best example of terrible ending is the always popular lazy writer gimmick ‘It was all a dream’. It is a kick in the groin to find out that none of the movie (game, book, etc) meant anything because it truly never happened…
    It feels cheap and diminushes everything (doesn’t matter how good or how bad) that happened.

  27. Endings aren’t just part of a story — Stories are not food.

    Just like a movie can be kinda crap right up until the ending.

    A mediocre ending isn’t likely to ruin a movie, but by definition the difference between mediocre and bad can be said to be “Did it ruin the movie?”

    A bad ending clashes with the story itself — it changes the plot, motifs, and so on of a film and just doesn’t work. . .like you say, a twist. A shift can be well executed (6th Sense, Unbreakable) or it can suck.

    Now You See Me is the best recent example: Awesome movie with a few flaws but. . .oh god that ending. So much fail, everything fail. Because it doesn’t have anything to do with the bloody think.

    I don’t really agree with the argument that typical movie-viewing is emotional, most of it seems to be instinctive to me. I think there’s an important distinction between an instinct, and an emotion. It can be emotional to be sure, but generally, meh, doesn’t seem to be the case.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.