I Never Saw It Coming...

by saturnchick | created - 25 Apr 2011 | updated - 27 Apr 2011 | Public

This is a list of movies with some of the best surprise/ambiguous endings in cinematic history.

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1. The Usual Suspects (1995)

R | 106 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

8.6
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.6/10 X  
77 Metascore

A sole survivor tells of the twisty events leading up to a horrific gun battle on a boat, which began when five criminals met at a seemingly random police lineup.

Director: Bryan Singer | Stars: Kevin Spacey, Gabriel Byrne, Chazz Palminteri, Stephen Baldwin

Votes: 824,313 | Gross: $23.34M

2. The Shawshank Redemption (1994)

R | 142 min | Crime, Drama

9.3
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 9.3/10 X  
80 Metascore

Two imprisoned men bond over a number of years, finding solace and eventual redemption through acts of common decency.

Director: Frank Darabont | Stars: Tim Robbins, Morgan Freeman, Bob Gunton, William Sadler

Votes: 1,885,678 | Gross: $28.34M

3. Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back (1980)

PG | 124 min | Action, Adventure, Fantasy

8.8
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.8/10 X  
81 Metascore

After the rebels are overpowered by the Empire on their newly established base, Luke Skywalker begins Jedi training with Yoda. His friends accept shelter from a questionable ally as Darth Vader hunts them in a plan to capture Luke.

Director: Irvin Kershner | Stars: Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Billy Dee Williams

Votes: 941,255 | Gross: $290.48M

4. Memento (2000)

R | 113 min | Mystery, Thriller

8.5
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  
80 Metascore

A man juggles searching for his wife's murderer and keeping his short-term memory loss from being an obstacle.

Director: Christopher Nolan | Stars: Guy Pearce, Carrie-Anne Moss, Joe Pantoliano, Mark Boone Junior

Votes: 940,901 | Gross: $25.54M

5. Psycho (1960)

R | 109 min | Horror, Mystery, Thriller

8.5
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  
97 Metascore

A Phoenix secretary embezzles $40,000 from her employer's client, goes on the run, and checks into a remote motel run by a young man under the domination of his mother.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock | Stars: Anthony Perkins, Janet Leigh, Vera Miles, John Gavin

Votes: 475,891 | Gross: $32.00M

6. Primal Fear (1996)

R | 129 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

7.7
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
47 Metascore

An altar boy is accused of murdering a priest, and the truth is buried several layers deep.

Director: Gregory Hoblit | Stars: Richard Gere, Laura Linney, Edward Norton, John Mahoney

Votes: 146,736 | Gross: $56.12M

7. Se7en (1995)

R | 127 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

8.6
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.6/10 X  
65 Metascore

Two detectives, a rookie and a veteran, hunt a serial killer who uses the seven deadly sins as his motives.

Director: David Fincher | Stars: Morgan Freeman, Brad Pitt, Kevin Spacey, Andrew Kevin Walker

Votes: 1,149,996 | Gross: $100.13M

8. The Sixth Sense (1999)

PG-13 | 107 min | Drama, Mystery, Thriller

8.1
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
64 Metascore

A boy who communicates with spirits that don't know they're dead seeks the help of a disheartened child psychologist.

Director: M. Night Shyamalan | Stars: Bruce Willis, Haley Joel Osment, Toni Collette, Olivia Williams

Votes: 775,122 | Gross: $293.51M

9. Oldeuboi (2003)

R | 120 min | Action, Drama, Mystery

8.4
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  
74 Metascore

After being kidnapped and imprisoned for fifteen years, Oh Dae-Su is released, only to find that he must find his captor in five days.

Director: Chan-wook Park | Stars: Min-sik Choi, Ji-tae Yu, Hye-jeong Kang, Dae-han Ji

Votes: 406,662 | Gross: $0.71M

10. Saw (2004)

R | 103 min | Horror, Mystery, Thriller

7.7
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
46 Metascore

Two strangers, who awaken in a room with no recollection of how they got there, soon discover they're pawns in a deadly game perpetrated by a notorious serial killer.

Director: James Wan | Stars: Cary Elwes, Leigh Whannell, Danny Glover, Ken Leung

Votes: 328,447 | Gross: $56.00M

11. The Birds (1963)

PG-13 | 119 min | Drama, Horror, Mystery

7.7
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
87 Metascore

A wealthy San Francisco socialite pursues a potential boyfriend to a small Northern California town that slowly takes a turn for the bizarre when birds of all kinds suddenly begin to attack people.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock | Stars: Rod Taylor, Tippi Hedren, Jessica Tandy, Suzanne Pleshette

Votes: 142,392 | Gross: $11.40M

12. Chinatown (1974)

R | 130 min | Drama, Mystery, Thriller

8.2
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  
86 Metascore

A private detective hired to expose an adulterer finds himself caught up in a web of deceit, corruption, and murder.

Director: Roman Polanski | Stars: Jack Nicholson, Faye Dunaway, John Huston, Perry Lopez

Votes: 240,216 | Gross: $29.20M

13. Eastern Promises (2007)

R | 100 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

7.7
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
82 Metascore

A Russian teenager living in London who dies during childbirth leaves clues to a midwife in her journal that could tie her child to a rape involving a violent Russian mob family.

Director: David Cronenberg | Stars: Naomi Watts, Viggo Mortensen, Armin Mueller-Stahl, Josef Altin

Votes: 203,097 | Gross: $17.11M

14. High Tension (2003)

R | 91 min | Crime, Drama, Horror

6.8
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
42 Metascore

Best friends Marie and Alexia decide to spend a quiet weekend at Alexia's parents' secluded farmhouse. But on the night of their arrival, the girls' idyllic getaway turns into an endless night of horror.

Director: Alexandre Aja | Stars: Cécile De France, Maïwenn, Philippe Nahon, Franck Khalfoun

Votes: 59,128 | Gross: $3.68M

15. A History of Violence (2005)

R | 96 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

7.5
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
81 Metascore

A mild-mannered man becomes a local hero through an act of violence, which sets off repercussions that will shake his family to its very core.

Director: David Cronenberg | Stars: Viggo Mortensen, Maria Bello, Ed Harris, William Hurt

Votes: 200,339 | Gross: $31.49M

16. Planet of the Apes (1968)

G | 112 min | Adventure, Sci-Fi

8.0
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  
79 Metascore

An astronaut crew crash-lands on a planet in the distant future where intelligent talking apes are the dominant species, and humans are the oppressed and enslaved.

Director: Franklin J. Schaffner | Stars: Charlton Heston, Roddy McDowall, Kim Hunter, Maurice Evans

Votes: 147,728 | Gross: $33.40M

17. Rosemary's Baby (1968)

R | 137 min | Drama, Horror

8.0
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  
96 Metascore

A young couple moves in to an apartment only to be surrounded by peculiar neighbors and occurrences. When the wife becomes mysteriously pregnant, paranoia over the safety of her unborn child begins to control her life.

Director: Roman Polanski | Stars: Mia Farrow, John Cassavetes, Ruth Gordon, Sidney Blackmer

Votes: 154,993

18. Fracture (2007)

R | 113 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

7.2
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
68 Metascore

An attorney, intent on climbing the career ladder toward success, finds an unlikely opponent in a manipulative criminal he is trying to prosecute.

Director: Gregory Hoblit | Stars: Anthony Hopkins, Ryan Gosling, David Strathairn, Rosamund Pike

Votes: 154,945 | Gross: $39.02M

19. Fight Club (1999)

R | 139 min | Drama

8.8
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.8/10 X  
66 Metascore

An insomniac office worker, looking for a way to change his life, crosses paths with a devil-may-care soap maker, forming an underground fight club that evolves into something much, much more.

Director: David Fincher | Stars: Brad Pitt, Edward Norton, Meat Loaf, Zach Grenier

Votes: 1,511,339 | Gross: $37.03M

20. No Way Out (1987)

R | 114 min | Action, Crime, Drama

7.1
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
77 Metascore

A coverup and witchhunt occur after a politician accidentally kills his mistress.

Director: Roger Donaldson | Stars: Kevin Costner, Gene Hackman, Sean Young, Will Patton

Votes: 29,044 | Gross: $35.51M

21. Frailty (2001)

R | 100 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

7.3
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
64 Metascore

A man confesses to an FBI agent his family's story of how his religious fanatic father's visions led to a series of murders to destroy supposed "demons."

Director: Bill Paxton | Stars: Bill Paxton, Matthew McConaughey, Powers Boothe, Matt O'Leary

Votes: 66,314 | Gross: $13.10M

22. Matchstick Men (2003)

PG-13 | 116 min | Comedy, Crime, Drama

7.3
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
61 Metascore

A phobic con artist and his protégé are on the verge of pulling off a lucrative swindle when the former's teenage daughter arrives unexpectedly.

Director: Ridley Scott | Stars: Nicolas Cage, Alison Lohman, Sam Rockwell, Bruce Altman

Votes: 112,664 | Gross: $36.91M

23. The Wicker Man (1973)

R | 88 min | Horror, Mystery, Thriller

7.6
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A police sergeant is sent to a Scottish island village in search of a missing girl whom the townsfolk claim never existed. Stranger still are the rites that take place there.

Director: Robin Hardy | Stars: Edward Woodward, Christopher Lee, Diane Cilento, Britt Ekland

Votes: 53,320 | Gross: $0.06M