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Movie Titles That Spoil The Ending

A great twist in a movie can be a truly wonderful thing. Think about where you were and what you experienced when you watched great cinematic heel turns like the ones in "Get Out," "The Sixth Sense," or "Scream," just to name a few, for the very first time. Subverting audience expectations is a trickly needle to thread; try too hard and it'll be cringeworthy, but strike a perfect balance and you'll thrill your viewers as they gasp over what just happened. The five films we're about to discuss, though? They don't do that. The titles tell you exactly what's going to happen in at the end.

That said, a movie title that spoils the ending isn't inherently a bad thing. On the contrary, a movie title that gives the game away can actually be fun in a completely different way — by giving the audience a goalpost to look forward to as the film moves towards its thrilling finale. From Sofia Coppola's stunning directorial debut to Quentin Tarantino's love letter to martial arts to an utterly ridiculous stoner comedy, here are five movies that spoil their endings ... and are great anyway.

The Virgin Suicides

Based on Jeffrey Eugenides' novel of the same name, Sofia Coppola's very first film "The Virgin Suicides" tackles a series of themes that she ultimately spent the next several years of her career exploring: feminine loneliness and how beauty can be a cursed, gilded cage. The title also quite clearly illustrates the horrific things bound to happen throughout the course of the movie. Narrated by a handful of boys who live near the Lisbon family, the story focuses on the five Lisbon girls — Lux (Kirsten Dunst), Mary (A.J. Cook), Cecilia (Hanna R. Hall), Therese (Leslie Hayman), and Bonnie (Chelse Swain) — who, by the end of the movie, all die by suicide. Shuttered in their home by their extremely strict parents, the Lisbon girls are a subject of utter fascination to the neighboring boys, who observe their comings and goings and even engage with them after Cecilia's suicide shatters the family long before her sisters tragically follow suit.

Out of all the sisters, Lux is the most prominently featured ... largely due to the fact that she frequently sneaks onto the Lisbon house's roof to smoke and sleep with random men (a habit she picks up after being used and abandoned by the popular Trip Fontaine, played by Josh Hartnett). When the sisters take their lives, it's a horrible ending to a troubling, gutting story ... and knowing it's coming doesn't make it any easier.

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Kill Bill: Volume 1 & Volume 2

Quentin Tarantino's two-part action epic "Kill Bill" was borne out of a concept created by the writer-director and Uma Thurman on the set of their first collaboration together, "Pulp Fiction" — and knowing that a guy named Bill will die at the end of the double feature doesn't make a single moment of it less fun or thrilling. At the beginning of "Kill Bill: Volume 1," we meet a woman known only as "The Bride" — played by Thurman — who has a list of names that we soon find out is a list of people whom she intends to kill. A former assassin who ran with the Deadly Viper Assassination Squad and tried to leave her life of crime behind, The Bride was set to marry a man in Texas and live a quiet life when her former cohorts, including her lover Bill (David Carradine) — whose baby she's carrying — show up and shoot her squarely in the head. Unfortunately for them, she survives ... and returns four years after their attack to get her revenge.

In the first film, The Bride handily dispatches both Vernita "Copperhead" Green (Vivica A. Fox) and O-Ren "Cottonmouth" Ishii (Lucy Liu), meeting the former at her suburban home and putting a knife through her chest and fighting through nearly a hundred various fighters before slaying the latter. "Kill Bill: Volume 2" sees The Bride, whom we learn is named Beatrix "Black Mamba" Kiddo, buried alive by Bill's brother Buck (Michael Madsen), though she emerges victorious yet again to kill both him and the only remaining Viper, Elle "California Mountain Snake" Driver (Daryl Hannah). When Beatrix finally reaches Bill, realizes their daughter B.B. Perla Haney-Jardine is still alive, kills him, and leaves with their child, it feels like a sigh of relief.

Lord of the Rings: Return of the King

By the third movie in Peter Jackson's stunning, award-winning "Lord of the Rings" trilogy, it feels like the right time for the long-awaited King of Gondor to return ... and that's exactly what he does, although a whole lot of stuff precedes the moment teased by the final film's title. In the aftermath of "Fellowship of the King" and "The Two Towers," "The Return of the King" sees that eventual king Aragorn (Viggo Mortensen) and other fellowship members Legolas (Orlando Bloom), Gimli (John Rhys-Davies), and Gandalf (Ian McKellen) reunite with two of the fellowship's four hobbits, Merry (Dominic Monaghan) and Pippin (Billy Boyd) ahead of an enormous battle that will overtake Middle-Earth. Elsewhere, Sam (Sean Astin), loyal companion to the designated ringbearer Frodo (Elijah Wood), grows suspicious of Gollum (Andy Serkis), a former Hobbit corrupted by the Ring's power who promises to lead them into Mount Doom and destroy Sauron's evil jewelry once and for all.

"Return of the King" is nothing if not packed with huge action setpieces and thrilling moments from beginning to end, especially as Aragorn and his gang prepare for war against Sauron's forces and Sam, Frodo, and Gollum inch closer to Mordor and Mount Doom. After Frodo (reluctantly) destroys the ring, losing a finger and killing Gollum in the process, all the heroes return to the capital city of Minas Tirith to welcome, well, the return of the king as Aragorn takes the throne he was born to inherit. Between Aragorn's reunion with his elven love Arwen (Liv Tyler) and the moment where he tells the heroic hobbits that they "bow to no one" and takes a knee himself, you'll be hard-pressed not to cry, even though you knew the king would return at the end.

Saving Private Ryan

The blunt, direct title of "Saving Private Ryan" isn't some sort of trick director Steven Spielberg was trying to pull on his audience — in this searing, stunning war epic from the acclaimed director, the titular Private James Francis Ryan, played by Matt Damon, is heroically rescued by his brothers in arms. Set during World War II, the movie opens with the event now known as "D-Day," in which Allied forces stormed the French beaches of Normandy to take back gains from German forces; despite staggering bloodshed on both sides, the Allied forces, including United States troops, ultimately prevail. In this depiction, Captain John H. Miller (Tom Hanks) leads a group of American soldiers behind enemy lines, and though they're victorious in their mission, they learn that James Ryan's three brothers in the service were killed during the invasion, and the remaining Ryan is missing. 

During a horrifically difficult rescue mission, some lose their lives — including Miller himself, at the end — and when the men find Ryan, he's so shaken by the deaths of his brothers and fellow soldiers that he feels he doesn't even deserve to be rescued from a remote post in France. The remaining soldiers are attacked by German forces, but Ryan is, as the title tells us, saved; in the movie's touching final moments, a much-older Ryan brings his family back to Normandy to visit Miller's grave and remember the man who saved his life.

Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle

Yes, "Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle" is a fundamentally ridiculous movie where two characters get extremely high and decide that all they want — the only thing that could possibly satisfy them — is food from the fast-food chain White Castle, leading them on a bizarre and utterly over-the-top journey as they try to eat a whole bunch of sliders. It's also an incredibly good time, and giving the game away right in the title is, honestly, one of the funniest moves a movie like this could possibly make. The film follows uptight banker Howard Lee (John Cho) and his slacker roommate Kumar Patel (Kal Penn) as they try and find their way to a White Castle, first foiled by the fact that the closest one to them has been replaced by a fake chain called "Burger Shack" (where Anthony Anderson's drive-thru employee is way too excited to tell them about what's really in the "special sauce"). From there, the movie just keeps pushing things to genuinely absurd heights.

On their way to White Castle, the pair hit a raccoon with their car which bites Harold, leading to a deranged subplot where Kumar ends up performing emergency surgery. The two get a ride from a deformed man named "Freakshow" (Christopher Meloni) and end up in a compromising position with his irrationally hot wife (Malin Akerman). They meet Neil Patrick Harris — playing a very fictionalized version of himself — who's having his own wild night and steals their car. At one point, they ride a cheetah; they also get arrested and escape from a police station lockup. When they finally and ecstatically cram a bunch of sliders into their mouth at the end of the movie, covered in dirt, grime, and blood, it's truly well-earned.