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Unresolved endings kind of piss me off. You?

 
 
Reply Thu 16 Apr, 2009 06:35 pm
My first real experience with unresolved endings was reading "Felix Krull: Confidence Man". It totally pissed me off.

Lately I've been coming across more and it still pisses me off.

Like this book "In the Woods" by Tana French. It sets up two mysteries and the best one is never resolved.

Then the other day there was this little film:

[youtube[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tcMCyqaTFaI&feature=channel_page[/youtube]

Don't even get me started on "Momento".

I think I have a pretty good imagination. I can dream up stuff. I don't need all the ends tied up neatly at the end of reading/watching something but when I just can't figure it out it drives me nuts.

I like both the books, the movie and the mini-film listed but somehow they still piss me off.

What do you think about unresolved endings?

Which ones have left you scratching your head?
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Type: Question • Score: 19 • Views: 3,828 • Replies: 46
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dyslexia
 
  1  
Reply Thu 16 Apr, 2009 06:38 pm
boomer, I'm thinking you are some really weird kind of dingbat.
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chai2
 
  1  
Reply Thu 16 Apr, 2009 06:40 pm
Usually I like unresolved endings.

BTW, I loved Momento, but you have to watch it a few times for it to make sense.

if it's done all artsy fartsy it can be annoying, but I like when it leaves it up to the viewer to think of the possibilities.
dyslexia
 
  1  
Reply Thu 16 Apr, 2009 06:47 pm
@chai2,
I'm very fond of arts fartsy and have several velvet paintings of elvis as mementoes of my earlier life on the farm. I also have a collection of Stetson hats.
0 Replies
 
NickFun
 
  1  
Reply Thu 16 Apr, 2009 07:25 pm
Of all the things in life that might bug me this has to be by far the least of them
dyslexia
 
  1  
Reply Thu 16 Apr, 2009 07:43 pm
I once watched a film titled "no way out" . It stars Kevin Costner, Gene Hackman , and Sean Young, and it is a remake of The Big Clock; both films are based on The Big Clock, a novel by poet and novelist Kenneth Fearing. I had absolutely no clue until the last 10 seconds. On the other hand "High Tide and Blue Water" also with Gene Hackman The resolution seems to go off the rails a bit near the end, but there is something appealing about this meditation on life that I liked. I'm fond of Gene Hackman.
0 Replies
 
dyslexia
 
  1  
Reply Thu 16 Apr, 2009 07:45 pm
@NickFun,
are you aware of anyone who cares?
0 Replies
 
boomerang
 
  1  
Reply Thu 16 Apr, 2009 07:59 pm
As long as they resolve it in the last 10 seconds or so I'd be unpissed off.

Once I invest a few hours in "entertainment" I want an ending, damnit.

If not a resolution, at least a clue.
0 Replies
 
Reyn
 
  1  
Reply Thu 16 Apr, 2009 08:08 pm
@boomerang,
boomerang wrote:

What do you think about unresolved endings?

Which ones have left you scratching your head?

Mulholland Drive.

Piece of crappola!
0 Replies
 
sakhi
 
  1  
Reply Fri 17 Apr, 2009 01:15 am
@boomerang,
I read a short story called "The Lady or the Lion" when I was a kid and I remember throwing the book in agony in the end...

Letty
 
  1  
Reply Fri 17 Apr, 2009 05:15 am
@sakhi,
sakhi, I think you mean The Lady or the Tiger.

http://www.bookrags.com/studyguide-ladyortiger/

The Pledge with Jack Nicholson made me want to throw something at the TV set. Evil or Very Mad
0 Replies
 
sozobe
 
  2  
Reply Fri 17 Apr, 2009 05:34 am
@boomerang,
I think unresolved endings fall into two basic categories: purposely unresolved and cop-out.

Some purposely unresolved ones don't bother me if done right -- I agree with Chai's mention of clues, something that sets you to thinking approximately what the author wants you to think. Some stories are better served with some ambiguity at the end -- I can't think of an example but I know I've read books that seemed to be going towards a tidy ending that was out of character for the book and I was actually relieved when things swerved off course at the very end. It was unresolved, but still satisfying.

I loved "A Series of Unfortunate Events" but the ending was annoying. It felt like a cop-out to me. I don't think the author had the whole story mapped out when he started -- I think he just kinda plunged in and wrote the first book, and then made up the rest as he went along. That can be OK, but he set up too many expectations and didn't tie up enough loose ends. Then he covered up with something about "maturity" and "life is messy." Well, yeah, but it just didn't work with what he'd already written, and wasn't satisfying. The end made me very grumpy. (But only because what came before it was so good, so I still recommend the series overall.)
edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Fri 17 Apr, 2009 05:44 am
The Tom Hanks film, Castaway, has one wondering if the character will ever get his life together, or end up as a tramp, or even turn to suicide. I did not mind that it went that way, but, all this time has passed and still I wonder.
djjd62
 
  1  
Reply Fri 17 Apr, 2009 05:48 am
boomer, if you haven't seen it, you'll love "no country for old men"
chai2
 
  1  
Reply Fri 17 Apr, 2009 06:33 am
@djjd62,
djjd62 wrote:

boomer, if you haven't seen it, you'll love "no country for old men"


Ah HA HA HA HA HA!!!

I loved the ending of that movie.
0 Replies
 
msolga
 
  1  
Reply Fri 17 Apr, 2009 07:01 am
@boomerang,
boomerang

This thread brought to mind John Fowles' novel, The French Lieutenant's Woman, which had two entirely different endings - both equally feasible. One "romantic" (of the happy-ever-after variety), the other, the complete opposite - the lovers separated forever. A wonderful read, but rather unsettling at the conclusion, deciding which ending to choose. Somehow they both seemed to stick!

http://www.litencyc.com/php/sworks.php?rec=true&UID=796
0 Replies
 
Joe Nation
 
  1  
Reply Fri 17 Apr, 2009 07:07 am
@edgarblythe,
Yeah. I've watched the ending of Castaway six or seven times and I know the writer(s) wanted us to feel like -okay, now his life can go on. - but, there is something missing somehow. There he is. The island he is on is now the whole world intersected by two Texas Farm Roads. AND? He is still a castaway.

Joe(then I rewind again,hoping his honey will just get in the truck with him. They drive off in the pouring rain, grinning and crying for all the time lost.)Nation
chai2
 
  1  
Reply Fri 17 Apr, 2009 07:51 am
@Joe Nation,
Joe Nation wrote:

Joe(then I rewind again,hoping his honey will just get in the truck with him. They drive off in the pouring rain, grinning and crying for all the time lost.)Nation


A small part of me wanted Helen Hunt to go off with Tom Hanks, but that was the part that wanted to save Tom from the hurt.

Then one realizes how unrealistic that is. Life goes on. If a movie had been done from Hunt's perspective, the waiting, the anguish of deciding if she should allow herself to be attracted to this other person, the moving on and having a happy life with someone, remembering a lost love. In that view, Tom being rescued and showing up is more than just problematic. In that way, Tom had stayed frozen in time, Helen had not. I wonder if Tom had ever considered the possibility that she had moved on?

Describing Helen in that role reminds me of the wife of Bruce Willis in Sixth Sense. There we got to see the process of accepting her husband was dead. Helen eventually had to come to that conclusion or her life would stagnate.

just adding this in...a few years ago a co-workers son-in law died in a car crash. He and her daughter had been married barely a year. I was the only one around when Bonnie got this news, like from on the scene, and the memory will always stay with me. The 2 of us just grabbed each other and wailed. Anyway, her daughter since remarried a very nice man, and they have a toddler now. I said to Bonnie once, "you know, Jake will always be frozen in time. He'll always be 24, and the man he was at that moment. No one can say what he would have become. I hope he would be happy at the woman his wife became, and will be later."

djjd62
 
  1  
Reply Fri 17 Apr, 2009 07:54 am
@chai2,
chai2 wrote:
Describing Helen in that role reminds me of the wife of Bruce Willis in Sixth Sense. There we got to see the process of accepting her husband was dead. Helen eventually had to come to that conclusion or her life would stagnate.


Shocked

thanks, i haven't seen the movie yet







Twisted Evil







0 Replies
 
DrewDad
 
  1  
Reply Fri 17 Apr, 2009 08:29 am
@Joe Nation,
Joe Nation wrote:
Yeah. I've watched the ending of Castaway six or seven times and I know the writer(s) wanted us to feel like -okay, now his life can go on. - but, there is something missing somehow. There he is. The island he is on is now the whole world intersected by two Texas Farm Roads. AND? He is still a castaway.

But... that's the point. She was his world. The island was just a metaphor, the package was just a metaphor for his work.
 

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