Graveyard Shift

Little Details In Horror Movies That Should’ve Made The Endings Obvious  

Christopher Myers
863 votes 209 voters 8.8k views 12 items

List Rules Vote up the horror movie endings we should have seen coming.

Horror movies simply love to sprinkle in foreshadowing, especially when there is a twist ending. The goal is to paint a complete portrait with little details that can only really be seen upon a second viewing of the film. Often, however, this technique is botched and the ending is telegraphed to the audience in advance. This list encapsulates some of the most obvious examples and moments where the savvy audience member can see the ending a mile away. We love these moments because, let's be honest, it feels great to turn to your friend at the end of the film and say, "I called it!"

Spoilers will abound in this list. We are literally giving away horror movie endings. If you haven't seen one of these films and don't want it ruined, skip that one. With that warning aside, let's get to it.

Us is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list Little Details In Horror Movies That Should’ve Made The Endings Obvious
Photo: Us/Universal Pictures

At the time, Adelaide's (Lupita Nyong'o) inability to speak is written off as post-traumatic stress disorder caused by meeting her doppelganger. That is believable enough, until we are introduced to Red (also Lupita Nyong'o). Red, you see, can speak. In fact, she is the only Tethered who can speak. So here we have a "regular" person who has trouble speaking, whose Tethered actually can speak, with no further explanation given. Around an hour later we find out that, surprise, they switched places as children that fateful night at the carnival. No, movie, we are not surprised.

What is also interesting is that the movie essentially creates a gaping plothole in its attempt to misdirect the audience away from this twist. That is, Red doesn't seem to remember that she was once a surface-dweller. At the very least, she goes to great lengths in her villain monologue to explain the inner workings of the underground to a person who actually used to live there. There are certainly reasons why Red could have forgotten (or repressed) her past, but the movie leaves that for the audience to fill in.

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Shutter Island is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list Little Details In Horror Movies That Should’ve Made The Endings Obvious
Photo: Shutter Island/Paramount Pictures

Shutter Island is one of the best examples of a film that uses a restricted first-person perspective to put the audience into the subjective headspace of the protagonist. So when Teddy Daniels (Leonardo DiCaprio) notices Chuck Aule (Mark Ruffalo) fumbling with his side arm, so does the audience. Right off the bat, the audience is cued into the fact that Chuck might not really be a federal agent. Anyone who has even a little bit of experience with a side arm would know how to unholster it, rather than handing it over holster and all as Chuck does. Of course, we only find out later who Chuck really is: Teddy's doctor.

This is far from the only indication in the movie that Teddy is really Andrew Laeddis. The unease of the armed guards, the talk with George Noyce, and many more small details are sprinkled throughout the film. Noticing them one by one throughout the movie gives the audience a fuller appreciation of the depth of Teddy's willful ignorance.

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Get Out is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list Little Details In Horror Movies That Should’ve Made The Endings Obvious
Photo: Get Out/Universal Pictures

As soon as those words leave his lips, you just know Chris (Daniel Kaluuya) has jinxed himself. You are pretty much just waiting for the double-barrel to appear at that point, and it does not disappoint. In a poetic inversion of the soft sensual imagery of the opening scene, we end with Chris facing off against Rose (Allison Williams) as she's holding the device. This is far from the only bit of foreshadowing planted in the movie, though.

Get Out is a film that scatters breadcrumbs throughout in order to lead the audience toward a satisfying climax. Little details, from Dean's (Bradley Whitford) hatred of deer to Jeremy's (Caleb Landry Jones) inquiries on MMA fighting, come together in the last act.

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The Others is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list Little Details In Horror Movies That Should’ve Made The Endings Obvious
Photo: The Others/Lionsgate

This bit of forshadowing is pretty grim. A mother screaming at her daughter to "stop breathing" is a bad look in any context. Once we learn about the incident involving pillows, and that the family really did stop breathing... well, there you go. Everybody got ghosted.

The Others is full of little hints like this, from Lydia's (Elaine Cassidy) inability to talk to Grace's (Nicole Kidman) migraines. It makes the film good for a second watch to catch all the Easter eggs - that is, if you didn't already guess the ending during your first viewing.

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