(WARNING: This article is all about movie endings so it will contain spoilers for the films mentioned. You've been warned)
To lose your faith in humanity, you simply need to turn on the news these days. If you want to really dive deep into the dark side of the human experience (through the safety of your television, of course), here are five movie endings that will make you lose all faith in humanity.
5. 'The Mist' (2007)
No list containing dark cinema is complete without mentioning #TheMist. I've been in many arguments about why this movie has one of the most brilliant movie endings of all time. Most films that begin in disaster tend to end with at least one of the main characters going on to live a happier future. With The Mist however, it is clear that none of our characters will have a happy ending.
When several of our main characters escape the store to drive off in to The Mist and hopefully drive past it, their car soon runs out of gas. The main protagonist, David Drayton, makes a gut-wrenching decision to kill everyone in the car, (with their permission) including his own son to avoid them suffering a horrible death at the hands of the terrifying creatures that live within the mist.
I can't explain the trauma you experience when you realize that he Drayton has murdered five other people minutes before realizing the horrors that came from this mist are now over. It's a truly visceral ending that leaves you feeling sick to your stomach. For someone who enjoys psychological horror films, it makes the entire movie worth watching. It will, however, make you lose faith in humanity with the idea that we make the best choices we possibly can in times of crisis, but our choices often have disastrous consequences.
4. 'Funny Games' (1997)
Although the American remake of the film was almost identical to the original film, for the sake of this post, lets focus only on the original version of Funny Games. Two sadistic young men hold a family on vacation hostage and make them play sadistic games. That is pretty much the entire plot line of the movie. The scenes of psychological torture are graphically depicted and very disturbing.
One of the most stomach-churning scenes takes place when one of the men stop to talk directly to the audience about why you're even watching this film. The sadist questions if the audience is not just as sick and twisted as him for watching such torture. Although this has made the movie a controversial topic in cinema over the years, it is the movie's ending that will make even the most optimistic person lose their trust in humanity.
In most home invasion movies, at least one of the people held captive tend to make it out alive. In Funny Games, every member of the family is slaughtered and you are lead to believe the attackers will soon go on to commit these disturbing acts again. A truly terrifying reminder that sometimes in life's most terrifying moments, no one makes it out alive.
3. 'American History X' (1998)
Although you may be trying to move on from your past, sometimes your past isn't done with you. This is the powerful message delivered at the end of one of my all-time favorite films, American History X. A neo-Nazi member gets out of prison after three years and tries to convince his brother that he's going down the wrong path and the neo-Nazi movement is not all it claims to be.
The film alternates between before Derek Vinyard goes to prison and after. Unfortunately, Derek's younger brother pays for Derek's sins with his life as he is murdered in his school's bathroom. The ending of the film is truly devastating because although you want Derek's brother to be free of his racist and violent ideologies, some things in life are inevitable. While Derek did suffer for his racist and hateful actions in prison, his brother suffered a fate much worst than his.
2. 'Oldboy' (2003)
Although I don't believe the Spike Lee remake is nearly as bad as people say it is, the original #Oldboy offers up a much more raw feel in this Korean revenge thriller. Although the violence throughout the film is very brutal and even nauseating at times, it's the ending that really gets under your skin.
When the main character is about to partake in his final act of revenge, he realizes the woman he just entered in to a sexual relationship is his daughter. Yuck! He chooses to hypnotize himself in order to forget the terrible news. The audience does not know if the hypnotism worked or not. Even if it did and the character continues to have a relationship with his daughter through blissful ignorance,this is one of the most depressing endings of all time.
You will lose faith in humanity thinking about how devastatingly far people will go to punish each other.
1. 'House Of Sand And Fog' (2003)
This movie begins on a very subtle note and then quickly spirals out of control. An Iranian family and a recovering drug addict battle over the ownership of a home. Although the plot line is very simple, there is no way to see the emotionally devastating ending coming. This ending truly brought me to tears because it is sadly realistic. People will fight so hard to hold on to things that belong to them. Many times, like within this movie, no one really wins anything.
Although the movie's ending varies some what from the novel's ending, they will both make you question if we truly value others' lives over material things.