10 Incredibly Subtle Ways Movies Gave Away Their Endings

When it stares you right in the face...

Shutter Island Shh
Paramount Pictures

For film-makers, there's art in story-telling that closely mirrors the way a magic trick is built up and paid off. Whether the debazzling finale relies on slight of hand, mental manipulation or actual illusion, the journey is always the same - you have to set up the rubes without them being able to guess exactly where you're going or how you got there. It's all about the old fashioned rope-a-dope.

In films, it's very much the same, which is why there's such a currency about the endings of films being spoiled. Along with twists, a movie's resolution and revelations are what every spoiler worth their salt wants to know. And that's precisely why some film-makers go out of their way to pull off a scam of their own, feeding the audience massive hints early on in their films that completely give the end away.

As long as you look hard enough, it's possible to work out exactly how a film will turn out. And it's arguably the most impressive trick any film-maker can pull...

10. Doc's Clock - Back To The Future

Back To The Future
Universal Pictures

It's easy to watch the opening credits of the original Back To The Future and be a little overwhelmed by the visual assault of so many clocks. Particularly if you're Captain Hook. Little joke there for the kids. Anyway, there are so many clocks that it's easy to stop paying attention and only really focus in on the newspaper cutting that is clearly placed to draw your eye more overtly.

But if you do that, you'll miss the almighty hint at one of the key moments of the film's climax that's hidden in the very first scene. As the camera pans across Doc Brown's various clocks, we see one clearly designed in homage to classic silent film Safety Last!, which has the miniature figure of actor Harold Lloyd hanging from the big hand.

That's clearly also a nod to the exact same thing happening to Doc at the end of the movie when he's attempting to harness the lightning strike that breaks the clock.

Executive Editor
Executive Editor

Executive Editor, chief Gunter and the most read writer on WhatCulture. Like ever.