Top 10 Movies with the Greatest Endings

A great ending can take a movie from being just good to absolutely unforgettable. It's that final act, those last few moments, that can elevate an entire film and make it buzzworthy for years to come. A killer ending can give you chills, bring you to tears, or leave you hanging at the edge of your seat craving for more.

It's not just about the final shot or the last line spoken. Sometimes it's the culmination of subtle cues and emotional arcs that make the final moments of a movie so impactful. The best film endings often leave you questioning, pondering, and - let's face it - sometimes flat-out sobbing.
The Top Ten
1 Forrest Gump
2 Saving Private Ryan

The part where Tom Hanks shoots the tank with a pistol was absolutely epic, and how it blew up was awesome.

3 The Green Mile

How about this one? The whole time you watched this movie, you never expected the ending. Missed the "counting." The ending is what I like most about the movie.

4 Fight Club

Everything that's already been said is my opinion too. I just want to add that the Pixies song "Where Is My Mind" was the perfect song for it. All in all, it just blew me away. Don't forget the detail. Just awesome.

Was hoping to see this on the list. Surprised and not surprised this is number one. One of the most perfectly executed movie scenes in cinematic history.

Who could forget those buildings being blown up after we found out the truth about Tyler Durden? Truly the best movie ending of all time.

5 The Shawshank Redemption

The happiest ending (let alone the greatest) that I've ever seen.

The end is the only part of the movie I like. The end is so good that I just watch the end when it's on TV.

6 Se7en


Absolutely brilliant. Yes, the other movie endings above are phenomenal, but this one truly is the winner. The whole movie is dark and grimy, and while it is not a torture porn or gore flick, it certainly doesn't shy away from blood, death, and several particularly nasty scenes and implications.

But the end...

The ending is a bright countryside, a polar opposite to everything leading up to the climax. At this point, we're happy but wary, as viewers - I mean, hey, we've caught the bad guy. We win. And then you see Morgan Freeman's face as he looks in "The Box" and swings around to look at Mills, far in the background.

That line, "Back off, John Doe has the upper hand, I repeat, he has the upper hand," completely throws off the viewer. Mills (Brad Pitt) has a gun to the bad guy's head. And then everything falls apart as he reveals it is Mills' wife's head, and that John Doe and Mills are to be the final sins if Mills chooses to kill Doe.

No gore is seen. None is needed. Everything is implied. The twist of knowing what's in the box, the implications it holds, and then the bad guy winning by dying? Good try, other movies. Se7en wins all.

7 Psycho

I had watched a lot of movies like this one. That's why I already guessed the main story of this movie. But for a '60s movie, yes, it has a good ending.

I hope they are watching. They'll see, and they'll know, and they'll say, Why, she wouldn't even harm a fly.

8 The Usual Suspects

The greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn't exist.

"And like that, he's gone." Brilliant ending. Left my jaw open for 10 minutes.

Ridiculous ending. Wow, awesome! Jaw dropped for half an hour. Come on, number 3?

9 The Sixth Sense

Saw it in L.A. on the Friday it opened, in a large theater where movie industry big-shots go to see the films they or their friends worked on. People there tend to stay for all the credits, then race for the door when the lights come up.

Not on this particular evening. The lights at the end of the credits revealed a sellout crowd, half of them standing, all of them verbally processing with total strangers what they had just seen. It was a "wow" moment.

Great movie with a great ending, but why isn't The Empire Strikes Back on the list?

10 The Silence of the Lambs

My favorite movie of all time. The opening is really good. The score is excellent. The plot is great. The characters are likable and had the perfect ending. No other film can beat The Silence of the Lambs, the best movie of all time.

Somehow, it's satisfying to me that a homicidal cannibal is free and wreaking havoc on his victims.

There are a lot of good endings, but no one can beat Silence of the Lambs, an old friend for dinner.

The Contenders
11 Saw

Actually unpredictable. The gloom that was created around the time of the ending made the dialogue super awesome.

The ending just made my jaw drop 10 inches. Unforgettable!

12 Jaws

Awesome - the music, the lines, the psychological events, the adventure during those last few seconds. Epic.

A very satisfying ending, one of the best.

That explosion was awesome! And Roy Scheider's line was funny! Kick-butt ending!

13 The Dark Knight

I can't say that it is surely the best movie ending, but I can say that this is the best movie ending I've ever watched. Masterpiece by Nolan. Just awesome.

Because we have to chase him. He isn't a hero. He is a silent guardian. A watchful protector. A dark knight.

- Gary Oldman, 2008

The end is sheer poetry! On a Robert Frost level!

14 Planet of the Apes

Wow. Why isn't this on the top 10, if not number 1? The greatest enemies of humanity are humans themselves. Those maniacs.

Best ending of them all. Should be higher.

15 The Dark Knight Rises

If you're talking about the cafe bit, then I agree. If it's the bit with Joseph Gordon-Levitt going into the Batcave, no. That doesn't round off the trilogy like the other one does. It leaves the field open for a Dark Knight Ends or something.

What is wrong with you guys? It should be in the top 3.

Yes, but it was the exact same ending as The Postman.

16 Monsters, Inc.

Some people might think that this ending is kind of sad (and I can understand that), but personally, I don't think so. Mike rebuilding Boo's door for Sully is actually wholesome and such a great ending for an awesome movie.

17 Inception

This should be number one. It has the greatest ending ever. It caused almost a decade of debate over a spinning top, and the music is perfect. It is also a defining moment with Dom Cobb as a character. Also, why isn't There Will Be Blood's ending on there?

Come on! The ending of this movie has been ravaged for years! Undoubtedly the best ending of all time!

There are two possible endings.

18 Monty Python's Life of Brian

Look on the bright side of life.

19 Edward Scissorhands
20 Hot Fuzz
21 The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 2
22 The Matrix

I love the ending of this movie. It gets me so pumped.

23 The Conversation
24 The World's End
25 City Lights
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