Death is a natural part of cinema; nothing stirs an emotional response from an audience quite like it. Whether it is the tear-jerking death of a hero or the elated relief as the villain gets his comeuppance, it is an effective tool. Not everyone that deserves to bite the bullet will, however, much to our frustration.
Sometimes these characters will be made to pay for their crimes in other ways, whether that is imprisonment or being forced to live in shame, but there are a surprising number of despicable movie villains that get away scot-free.
Very rarely is the alternative punishment to death a more satisfying outcome for the viewer. One such case is Hans Landa from Inglourious Basterds, who has a swastika carved into his forehead, meaning he will never live a peaceful life in hiding after the war.
In Hollywood history some of the greatest ever moments have been when the arch-nemesis of our hero is finally defeated. Emperor Palpatine being hurled into the exploding core of the Death Star, Voldemort turning to ash and Gollum sailing into the fiery pits of Mount Doom are both iconic and highly satisfying.
Let's take a look at some of the less satisfying outcomes.
10. Alex DeLarge – A Clockwork Orange
Thankfully Alex DeLarge spends a rather small portion of A Clockwork Orange free to perform his criminal antics.
In the opening third of the movie he cripples an elderly man, rapes said elderly man's wife and beats another woman to death. Thankfully due to an earlier altercation in which his gang voiced their displeasure at their string of petty crimes, they knock him unconscious and leave him for the police to arrest.
The rest of the film follows his life in prison as the system attempts to rehabilitate him into an upstanding community. To do this, they trial an incredibly intense form of aversion therapy on him to make him feel sick at the sight of scenes of sex and violence.
Believing the therapy to have worked, he is released from prison, only to be brutally beaten by both his former gang and the friends of the elderly man he had crippled some years earlier.
If this were anyone else then you might have found yourself feeling sorry for him, but rest-assured, Alex remained every bit the cruel sadist he had always been, and this was confirmed by his fourth-wall-breaking stare into the camera in the film's closing shot.
Not to mention he will send any misophonia sufferers to the brink during that eating scene.