With so many films out there today following a similar ‘scary movie’ formula, it’s not uncommon to be able to guess a film’s ending way before you get there. This can mean you’re left with the disappointing feeling that you had it all figured out way before the pay-off- and where’s the fun in that?
It’s not all bad, though. There are certain films out there that reveal just enough at just the right times that you don’t even realise they’re giving everything away. Whether that’s foreshadowing that you don’t know is foreshadowing, or a particular detail that you hadn’t quite noticed in time to make the connection, there are some filmmakers that do their reveals just right.
Either you can piece together the clues along the way and feel the ultimate satisfaction at the end when you’ve cracked the code, or the ending reveal suddenly allows you to connect the dots and see that you’ve been drip-fed the information all along.
It takes a talented filmmaker and a well-paced plot to pull it off, but there’s certainly a few films out there who have turned their foreshadowing into an art.
Beware though, this list is full of spoilers!
8. Saw - Jigsaw's Plans Are Literally An Open Book
Starting off strong we have Saw, a film with one frustratingly obvious piece of evidence that gives away our big killer reveal long before we find it out for sure.
This first instalment to the now huge franchise centres around two men and a corpse. Which, when said like that, sounds like a strange daytime television comedy. As the men, Gordon and Adam, try to escape a locked room to save themselves (and in one man’s case, save his family), they realise that their capture has been at the hands of the notorious Jigsaw killer.
We then get a little flashback to five months earlier: Gordon is discussing the case of terminal brain cancer being suffered by a patient called John Kramer and for a brief moment we see a shot of Kramer lying semi-conscious in his hospital bed.
If you look closely, you can see he has left his notebook open on a page of what appears to be scribbles.
Look closer: it’s actually an illustration of the infamous reverse bear trap.
When we go on to see this trap in action, those who were able to link it to the image drawn by Kramer would be able to see that he is the one responsible. From there, they also may be able to recognise the ‘corpse’ in the room with Gordon and Adam as being Kramer himself.
Doing this, you’d be able to solve the two biggest twists in the film by seeing one important give-away clue.