The reason I ask this question is that of lately, I find myself disappointed with more and more endings. All kinds of endings. Book endings, TV show endings, and movie endings. Perhaps I'm just too picky, and some of what I may say you might shake your head and say, "She's nuts! That ending was perfect!"
In the last few weeks I feel myself surrounded by bad endings. Mostly from books in a series or from the movies/shows I've watched. Let's just say that I feel quite unsatisfied and let down. Example number one (and feel free to disagree), was in watching THE WOMAN IN BLACK.
(Possible spoiler alert, though I try to be vague)
When I'd first seen the trailer for this move (see below) I was instantly drawn in and put this movie on my TO BE WATCHED list. I like a good scare--but not a super scary movie, since I'm a chicken that way--so this movie seemed right up my alley. Since I don't get out much (tis the life of a hermit writer), my husband and I watched it on DVD. I liked it. I was intrigued. Certain parts scared me, and then BOOM...the stupid ending. I actually said out loud, "Are you serious?"
From what I understand, the movie's ending is different than from the book ending in which the movie is based. Since I haven't read the book, I have no idea what the real ending is, but I can tell you the movie ending sucked. I won't go into too many details in case you haven't seen the movie yet and still have the desire to check it out. I can see what the movie makers/producers were going for--a happy ending of sorts--but it was just wrong. That was not the ending I was looking for. The ending I wanted was either a) defeat the weird ghost at her games OR b) give me more creepy by showing us that the crazy ghost can not be stopped.
Don't have the crazy ghost mend the guys broken heart by doing what she did (see, trying to be vague here). This should be a scary movie and not a "You helped me get what I want so now I will help you get what you want, even though it is wrong and disturbing." I had high hopes for this movie and I was let down by the ending. So yes, for me, the ending matters.
Another let down came after watching back seasons of BIG LOVE on HBO. It's an interesting show, a but wacky and bizarre, but I watched all five seasons, got to the series finale and was like, "Seriously? That's how it ends?" I didn't like it one bit. Not at all. I wanted something bigger.
Then, I've been reading a few books that are the first books in a series. I loved the book...until the very end. It was as if the author took a REALLY big book and then chopped it up into pieces to make it a series--no real conclusion or wrap up at the end. That's not satisfying at all. And when an author does this, I have no desire to pick up book two to see what happens. I know it won't end well either since there is a book #3 and a book #4. I think it is incredibly important for a book in a series to have some type of conclusion. Not everything can be cleared up, I get that, but the book should be able to stand on its own if it had to. When it can't, that is a failure.
Some books with really bad endings...The Lovely Bones (stupid ending), The Road (so depressing), Mocking Jay (sorry, I really didn't like the way it ended at all. I wanted more relationship development or why she chose who she did), My Sister's Keeper (are you kidding me???).
But this has me thinking...how important is the ending? Can it make or break a book (movie or whatnot)? I say yes. For the most part, I have a hard time looking beyond it. I like the feeling of a great ending, of walking away feeling satisfied and as if I haven't wasted my time.
So what say you? How important do you think an ending is? Can you forgive a good book with a bad ending? What book left you shouting, "Are you kidding me?"
Can I forgive a really bad ending? No, but it has to be a really bad ending. In that case, it colors the whole work for me. (It's no longer a "good" book.) I haven't seen The Woman in Black, but I agree with you on Big Love. That whole last season was a bit of a mess.
5/31/2012 04:08:28 am
Endings matter, and if the ending is not good, this disappoints me greatly and can color my overall thought of the story.
5/31/2012 04:46:50 am
The series abrupt end kills me and I refuse to read the next book. No time for ploys. So authors stop doing it. The only reason I kept reading twilight was because I thought for sure the ending with the Italian vamps would be worth the rest I waded through. Terrible ending to a series.
5/31/2012 08:51:52 am
It depends on just how bad the ending is, but if a twist came out of nowhere or a character's decisions don't feel justified then that's hard for me to get past. I dropped a series that I'd previously loved because of an ending that brushed past a major fight between its main characters without even a proper apology, that made the whole plot feel like drama for drama's sake rather than something necessary to move the relationship forward.
5/31/2012 09:43:54 am
A really bad ending can spoil a book for me. If it is a series, I give the second book a chance, but if it is the same bad ending, I quit reading them. It is okay to be picky:) It is my time and I don't have a lot to spare. A mild cliffhanger is okay. I can see the need to draw the reader back. The best ending I have read is for your Wanted: Dead or Undead book. I commented on that very thing in the review. The ending was very satisfying and led me to the next book. Hope it is out soon!!!
For me, it was the movie, The Grey. The movie was about five minutes from ending and I knew exactly how it was going to end. I kept watching for hope of being wrong, but I wasn't. I don't want to spoil it in case there are people who haven't seen it but I was super [not happy]ed.
6/2/2012 06:54:45 am
The. Ending. Matters. A bad ending will kill a book. But, everyone has a different definition of a bad ending. You mentioned My Sister's Keeper. I threw the book across the room and screamed when it ended, but only because it upset me. I didn't deem it a bad ending. The Lovely Bones I agree with you. I have a problem with happily ever after endings most of the time. Especially if they seem unrealistic. And I really hate when the ending is rushed and the author just seems to wrap it all up in a couple of paragraphs like they didn't want to take the time to write the real ending!
6/6/2012 04:28:46 am
Yes, a bad ending can ruin a good book, most definitely. Most important, the ending has to satisfy - it can be sad or happy, but it must make sense, and the be the ending the characters deserved.
6/7/2012 01:11:53 pm
I have not read or seen most of what you discussed above, but wanted to comment on Mockingjay. I was very upset at the ending. I thought it was dragging on and on and then came to an abrupt end.
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