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Old December 10 2013, 08:18 AM   #31
Kestrel
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Re: Sad/happy/bittersweet endings

"What's good about sad?" "It's happy for deep people."

On the other hand, I do love a good happy ending too.
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Old December 10 2013, 08:19 AM   #32
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Re: Sad/happy/bittersweet endings

Kestrel wrote: View Post
"What's good about sad?" "It's happy for deep people."
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Old December 10 2013, 07:58 PM   #33
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Re: Sad/happy/bittersweet endings

Kestrel wrote: View Post
"What's good about sad?" "It's happy for deep people."
That's great! I love it.
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Old December 10 2013, 09:11 PM   #34
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Re: Sad/happy/bittersweet endings

Kestrel wrote: View Post
"What's good about sad?" "It's happy for deep people."

On the other hand, I do love a good happy ending too.
I guess I'll stay shallow, or dumb, or whatever. I watch/read stories to be entertained. Watching tragic shit happening with no hope of resolution pisses me off. I don't pay to be depressed. I can turn on the evening news to do that for free.
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Old December 10 2013, 11:36 PM   #35
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Re: Sad/happy/bittersweet endings

I think it is much easier to admire the human spirit in watching how people deal with adversity including death and pain. Inappropiate happy endings annoy me because they lessen the impact of how people have to deal with adversity.
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Old December 10 2013, 11:40 PM   #36
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Re: Sad/happy/bittersweet endings

@sidious: How can happy endings be a lie? This is FICTION we're talking about.

Unless the happy ending involves cake of course...
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Old December 10 2013, 11:42 PM   #37
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Re: Sad/happy/bittersweet endings

^^ Of course, taken too far it's just as annoying to be told the things you like are inferior because obviously the only things that happen in life are sadness and despair, and we should never hope for or expect anything better.

sidious618 wrote: View Post
Kestrel wrote: View Post
"What's good about sad?" "It's happy for deep people."
That's great! I love it.
Sally Sparrow, always ready with the right words.
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Old December 10 2013, 11:47 PM   #38
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Re: Sad/happy/bittersweet endings

It really depends on the medium. I do like to read ambiguity into happy endings, I mean ROTJ ends happily, everything blown up, medals.. but there's still legions of armed ships and troopers out there, and planets controlled by the empire and and the Jedi are still gone. What comes next?
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Old December 11 2013, 01:13 AM   #39
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Re: Sad/happy/bittersweet endings

While I prefer happy endings in general, I enjoy a good unhappy ending every once in a while because they make the happy endings all the more satisfying. If everything was predetermined to be a happy ending the predictability of it all would dampen the suspense when our heroes are in danger. There has to be consequences sometimes in order for the threat of those consequences to have any meaning or implied danger.

Some films would just be fairly conventional with a happy ending, or at least an ending where the villain doesn't win or accomplish his goals. Imagine Seven or The Usual Suspects or Arlington Road without their downbeat endings? They'd hardly be memorable. The endings made those films. Which is not to say throwing in a bad guy wins bummer ending always works. Lots of films tried to copy the formula and failed miserably. But in the hands of the right writers and directors it can turn the pedestrian into the remarkable.

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For example, I think War of the Worlds (2005) would have been a better movie with a bittersweet ending in which the character played by Tom Cruise had turned up at his in-laws' place to break the news that he had managed to save his daughter but the son had died.
Oh, and just to toss another Cruise scifi film into the bonfire of unhappy endings, everything that happens after Chief Anderton is lowered into the prison chamber and the white light flashes in Minority Report is just him dreaming while he's in an induced coma in the prison for the rest of his life. Lamar (Max von Sydow) successfully frames Anderton and gets away with the murder of Agatha's mother, PreCrime continues to put away innocents and is expanded across the whole country, and the PreCogs remain enslaved and abused.

The key is the line from the prison caretaker:
"They say you have visions. That your life flashes before your eyes. That all your dreams come true."

Anderton's visions after the white light were of catching the man responsible for framing him and murdering Agatha's mother, freeing the PreCogs from enslavement and closing PreCrime, and reconciling with his wife and having another child. All his dreams came true.
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Old December 11 2013, 02:11 AM   #40
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Re: Sad/happy/bittersweet endings

I agree about the "My Girl" movie.


My sister had lost her 7 yr old son to leukemia and several months later went to this movie because the advertisements looked cute. Bad, bad choice.
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Old December 11 2013, 03:23 AM   #41
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Re: Sad/happy/bittersweet endings

Miss Chicken wrote: View Post
I think it is much easier to admire the human spirit in watching how people deal with adversity including death and pain. Inappropiate happy endings annoy me because they lessen the impact of how people have to deal with adversity.
If you see a character deal with death and pain, it's not an unhappy ending. That's what I meant when I said it's about overcoming obstacles. Brad Pitt didn't deal with what was in the box in Seven, for example. We are cut off after he makes the wrong choice, and we never see if he deals with it. Are we let to believe that he is going to stay that way for the rest of his life?

That's why, for example, Flight is not an unhappy ending. It would be if we didn't get Washington's monologue at the end. Without the monologue, the whole journey of the character (and the audience) was pointless.

TWOK doesn't have an unhappy ending despite Spock's death, since we see the characters dealt with it (or are starting to deal with it). Kirk feels young again, which makes a point to his journey in the film. Khan managed to get a loved one killed, but Kirk deals with it, so Khan lost the battle. Now imagine the film fading out right after Spock dies. Khan wins.

Last edited by JarodRussell; December 11 2013 at 03:38 AM.
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Old December 11 2013, 03:37 AM   #42
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Re: Sad/happy/bittersweet endings

I would call the ending to Flight a bittersweet ending.
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Old December 11 2013, 03:40 AM   #43
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Re: Sad/happy/bittersweet endings

Bittersweet is good, perhaps that's what I'm trying to say.
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Old December 11 2013, 04:23 AM   #44
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Re: Sad/happy/bittersweet endings

@Locutus: Do you also think that Total Recall (the Ah-nuld version) ended with Quaid being lobotomized and the whole thing is his Rekall fantasy?
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Old December 11 2013, 07:19 AM   #45
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Re: Sad/happy/bittersweet endings

JarodRussell wrote: View Post
That's why, for example, Flight is not an unhappy ending. It would be if we didn't get Washington's monologue at the end. Without the monologue, the whole journey of the character (and the audience) was pointless.
He was a borderline sociopathic dirtbag who endangered his passengers on a daily basis (regardless of what an amazing pilot he was), just possibly not in the one incident where he actually crashed. Him never being allowed to fly again and having to face the consequences of his actions is a happy ending for the hundreds of people he might have killed in the future.

Rķu rķu, chķu wrote: View Post
@Locutus: Do you also think that Total Recall (the Ah-nuld version) ended with Quaid being lobotomized and the whole thing is his Rekall fantasy?
Well, there is the "blue sky on Mars" comment at Rekall before he even gets put under, which is pretty solid evidence, and his Martian girlfriend appearing on the screen (though that's a little more ambiguous since the effects of the memory implant had just started to take hold).

Of course the reboot only treated that reality/dream ambiguity like a secondary consideration and not the entire friggin' point. It had good action and production values, but was ultimately pretty shallow compared to the Arnie version (there's something you don't hear often). Still enjoyable, though.
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