Who doesn't love a good mystery? Delving into the unknown and giving the audience no way of knowing what to expect next is integral to telling a compelling story, whether the entire narrative depends on it or it's nothing more than a minor detail.
Regardless of the size or even the consequence, such mysteries can drive audiences crazy. Some can be solved within the scope of one movie, while others have taken years to be solved, but when done right they can have exactly the same impact.
Though the question posed has to be compelling, of course, even more important is the answer. It doesn't matter how entertaining the build-up is, if the conclusion isn't satisfying then it was all for nothing. Plenty of movie mysteries have gone on to legendary status, while others have frustrated those invested in the story because the answers were so simple. Annoyingly so.
Whether these came in the form of underwhelming explanations of a character's mysterious past, monsters that should have stayed hidden, or the answer to questions that have plagued audiences for years where ambiguity felt like the point, these movies all answered tantalising questions in mind-numbing ways.
10. How Was Jack Pictured At The Overlook In 1921? - The Shining
One of the weirdest and most ambiguous movie endings ever has to be that of The Shining. There are plenty of iconic and memorable moments throughout Stanley Kubrick's effort, but few more so than the final shot in which the camera pans into a picture of the Overlook from 1921, with Jack Nicholson's Jack Torrance front and center.
This has been interpreted in many different ways over the years, with audiences trying to explain how a character from the present can show up in a picture from decades earlier.
The movie itself never gives a definitive answer, which is what has made it such a deliciously infuriating ending, but one of the most compelling explanations has been that this was confirmation of the hotel absorbing Jack, almost taking over his soul. The actual explanation however, when compared to this is a little disappointing.
Stanley Kubrick himself has reportedly spoken previously about how the picture points to Jack being a reincarnation of a previous caretaker. It almost feels that the ambiguity is what makes this ending so compelling, and that such a simple answer as reincarnation detracts from the moment somewhat.