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The best surprise/twist endings in movie history!

Updated on November 7, 2014

Surprise endings. There are an art form!

Beware! Reality and Hollywood are not all that they seem.

Speaking of Hollywood, American Cinema has given us some of the creepiest, and shocking endings in the past 50 years. Movie goers love action, horror and comedy, but nothing beats a surprise ending. As hard as it was to construct this list, here are the 13 best shockers.

NOTE- Momento, and Rosemary's Baby came close, but no way! Primal Fear was tough to leave off also.

I thought that The Others was totally overrated! This story and ending, both fell flat. it was just another one of Nicole's attacks on religion!

Do you expect to see the 6th sense? You may be surprised.

13. The Usual Suspects- Many people liked this one, because they didn't see a certain character as being able to walk away clean and get away with being the villian. This had a good cast and a big following.

12. Planet of the Apes- Chalreton Heston took a tour of space not knowing where it would take him. But once he figured that out, he had a much bigger surprise waiting for him!

11. Friday the 13th 1980- This movie, like it or not, changed horror cinema forever! It made this list, not only because someone other than the infamous Jason was the killer. If you really watch the ending, the real terror twist is when the spirit of Jason (the little boy who drowned at Camp Christal Lake) possesses the mystery killer, and tells her to "kill them all"! That was the part that made my blood chill.This was a great spin on Psycho, with 5 times the blood!

10.The Howling 5- Most of the Howling after the first were terrible, but this one was saved by the ending!

9. The Omen- Who among you was not freaked out at the very end? When the tears turned to a laugh, I had a chill go up my spine! Until that point, the evil was hidden well.

8. The Howling- Evil lurks all around us. No one, not even you know where it will surface. Some times it hides, but eventually, it comes out in the open and takes those you least expect!

7. Psycho 2- Yes, even part 2 was a mystery until the very end! More murders are taking place at the Hotel, but who is behind it? Has Norman gotten better? If not Norman, then who? It is time to find out...don't you think?

6.Identity- This was a bizarre crime thriller that was intense the whole way through. Then, the ending makes the whole story spin out of control, before it all comes together.

Here come the freaky five!

5. The First Power 1990- A cop investigates a strange murder that leads to murders that keep getting stranger. He eventually gets help from a Nun and a physcic who help him see exactly what he is up against. Will it bring him in over his head?

4. Along Came a Spider- Morgan Freeman is investigating a crime that has him stumped. Of coarse he figures it out, but does the viewer? Not until the end!

3. The Empire Strikes Back (Star Wars part 2)- One of the most famous twists in Hollywood's long history came from a galaxy far, far, away. Many saw this to see Luke emerge as a Jedi, or see Yoda, or Han and Liela, or just for the story. No one saw the show down between Luke and Vader ending as it did. This was the only chance they had to top the first movie.

2. The Sixth Sense ( Surprise ! It made it)- M. Night's big shocker. This is the movie that he and several others will be remembered for. I have never met anyone who saw this ending coming! If you haven't seen this or had the ending spoiled, then you have to see it! Get now and watch it for Halloween! The story perfectly sucks the viewing in so deep that the ending comes from out of nowhere, all at once! A master piece that shocked the world!

1. Psycho 1961- The old story about a boy and his mom, right? Wrong! Trust me, no other movie about a mamma's boy is anything like this one! the psychological twist sent Hollywood into a tail spin and put a huge feather in Hitchcock's hat!


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    • MikeSyrSutton profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from An uncharted galaxy

      Thanks for the comment! You should watch the rest. I love most of these!

    • PDXKaraokeGuy profile image

      Justin W Price 

      8 years ago from Juneau, Alaska

      Good list... believe it or not, I've only seen about half of these movies. Honorable mentions should include Memento, The Prestige, Righteous Kill, North by Northwest and The Number 23.

    • MikeSyrSutton profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from An uncharted galaxy

      Thank you!

    • shiningirisheyes profile image

      Shining Irish Eyes 

      8 years ago from Upstate, New York

      Hands down - The Sixth Sense provided a wonderful sneak attack. I recently viewed "Man on a Ledge and its conclusion was a wonderful shock as well.

      You chose some good examples.

    • MikeSyrSutton profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from An uncharted galaxy

      Thank you Veronica!

      I have Suzie and I did not think it was in the top 13. My movie lists are always different from many websites, magazines, and the AFI. There would be little point in me doing a list if I was just going to copy the other lists.

      It was a good movie, but I saw Amanda Peat's demise coming, like I did in the X files.

      However, I always encourage people to do their own lists if they disagree with mine. You know what is said about variety!

    • Suzie ONeill profile image

      Suzie ONeill 

      8 years ago from Lost in La La Land

      Have you seen the movie "Identity" with John Cusack? I'd add it to the list!

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      GREAT list!!!


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