Saturday 10 February 2018

The Saturday List #164 - The most thought provoking endings in TV and film history

Image result for Derry Girls
Derry Girls
Have you been watching Derry Girls? The series about a group of unruly girls and an English boy at a Roman Catholic Convent school in Catholic "Free Derry" in the middle of the troubles? In my humble opinion it has been the best thing on TV for a long time. Very funny and very well observed, focusing on growing up in a completely warped, secretarian society, but behaving like teenagers everywhere. I missed the final episode, earlier in the week so I watched it on catch up last night. 

I was not prepared for the ending. It was a true masterpiece of TV. It was funny, but very thought provoking and quite shocking. I won't spoil it for you. I suggest you watch the whole series. It may take those less familiar with Irish history and accents a while to get into it, but it is worth it. 

Anyway, it got me thinking. I decided that it was a far better list than my prepared "Top Ten items of consumer packaging". So here we go, my top ten TV and Film endings. What are yours.

1. Derry Girls - * As described above *

2. Jacobs Ladder - Perhaps one of the strangest films. I was quite angry at the ending. It is brilliant but vary disturbing. Watch the film, don't read up on it. 

3. Last Cab to Darwin - This is an independent Australian film. It is an absolute masterpiece. Based on a true story, it really makes you think. It is all about a cab driver with terminal cancer who completes a 1,000 mile trip in his cab, picking up waifs and strays on the way, to the Northern Territories to take advantage of the newly passed assisted dying laws. It is difficult to find but can be downloaded.

4. Babylon - Independent British film about the Black community and sound system culture in Brixton in the late 1970's. It is a very gritty film and the ending certainly makes you think.

5. Alien - I can remember going to see Alien at the cinema. That was in the days when papers didn't print spoilers. Sigourney Weaver's performance is just awesome, perhaps the first proper female sci fi role model. I wish they'd just left it there. It was perfect. It is the best sci fi film ever made, but with all the sequels etc, its become rather silly and has diluted what was a masterpiece. I loved the way it finished, like the rest of the film clever. 

6. Easy Rider -  A classic film with a classic ending. The masterpiece of the blokes on motorbikes genre.

7. Raiders of the Lost Ark - What is for the most part a regulation Harrison Ford regulation romp has a truly masterful ending. Quite unexpected and you are jolted out of the jolly romp and leave thinking.....

8. Ashes to Ashes - The follow up to Life on Mars. This is where we learn the truth about DC Gene Hunt. Life on Mars was on of my favourite TV series ever. I loved Gene Hunt as the brash 1970's Northern Cop and Sam as the time travelling PC PC, oddly transported back in time. I felt that Ashes to Ashes was not really cutting the mustard, until the finale. Then it all made sense (almost).

9. Planet of the Apes (1968 version) - another one they should have left alone after making a masterpiece. I can remember seeing this at the cinema in around 1973 with my mates (I think at Burnt Oak Cinema). We all came out in silence and then had an animated discussion on the 140 bus back to Mill Hill. If you've not seen the film and don't know the ending, make the effort. 

10. The Sopranos - I have never quite decided whether the ending was brilliant, a cop our or both. It certainly has made me think. A brilliant series, it was certainly not the finale I expected. 

What are yours?

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