the godfather 1

As Kay Adams watches from the foreground, men surround Michael Corleone in embraces and one man kisses his ring. The end of the Godfather Part I is the perfect logical conclusion of the film given the grandiose character arc Michael has undergone. Any other ending would leave the film feeling incomplete at best, and could possibly ruin what many consider to be the greatest movie of all time.

Other classic films, like Chinatown and Casablanca, have similarly perfect endings. Some movies, like Caddyshack, may not be seen on the Sight And Sound Top 10 poll which is released every decade, but Rodney Dangerfield blasting Journey on the golf course seems like a perfectly fitting end within the context of the film.

Unfortunately, many movies narrowly miss out on perfection in their last precious few minutes. Whether it’s a nonsensical change in personality or a deus ex machina, an unnecessary additional ending monologue or an entire 40-minute long third act full of drivel, the ending to a film can make or break it.

So grab your bucket of popcorn and bottle of white-out as we dive into the 10 endings that nearly ruined their movies.

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This article was first posted on February 5, 2013