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Discuss: Are Films More Enjoyable When You Know the Ending?

Posted: August 11th, 2011 by WorstPreviews.com Staff
Discuss: Are Films More Enjoyable When You Know the Ending?Submit Comment
A recent study performed by University of California, San Diego revealed that spoilers can actually help a reader or movie-goer enjoy the story more.

The study took twelve classic short stories and created three different types; the first is unchanged, the second has a paragraph in the beginning spoiling the story, and the third has that paragraph in the middle of the story. Each person only read one version.

The final numbers showed that people enjoyed the stories almost always more when they were spoiled for them, but spoiled before they began reading, not in the middle.

This shows that when people know the twist at the end, they are able to follow the story easier and can focus on other aspects of writing than just following the plot. That combination made for more enjoyable reading and likely explains why people can watch "The Usual Suspects" or "The Sixth Sense" multiple times and still find them interesting.

Question: Do you enjoy a movie more knowing how it turns out?

Source: UCSD


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Displaying 56 comment(s) Profanity: Turn On
nuttie30xx writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 7:17:42 AM

sometimes
trailertrash writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 7:19:14 AM

If I'm sitting with someone who has seen the film I always try to guess what happens next but I don't want to know if I'm right.
SeWerin writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 7:23:20 AM

Hell no!

What the.... i mean holly crap are they serious!?!?

"They are able to follow the story easier and can focus on other aspects of writing than just following the plot"

Wow, just wow. That is completely new way of retardation. Movies like Sixth Sense, Usual Suspects, Se7en, Oldboy - they are all fantastic because of their stories and performances, but it is the twists that give them whole new dimension!

The job of the movie is to pull you in its world, to be unprepared on the events, to play with you. It is escape from reality, it is meant to be unexpected.

How can they say that they enjoy movies if they are spoiled?!?! Those are not movie fans, those are idiots
Rambo writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 7:27:19 AM

No.
Freudian_Nightmare writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 7:36:50 AM

Ehm, no?

It's always better not to know the ending, to have that surprise moment or the feeling of victory if you have guessed the ending right.
This also encourage second viewings. If you're stunned by a twist, then you want to see that movie again and see what you have missed. This is the whole point of movie watching.

This is why most people hate those "romantic comedies", we all know how they will turn out, which makes them meaningless.
Kurskij writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 7:38:45 AM

"This shows that when people know the twist at the end, they are able to follow the story easier and can focus on other aspects of writing than just following the plot."

Repeated viewings are made to enjoy the aspects one didn't notice before.



Bob82 writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 7:47:52 AM

I'm not sending my kids to that university.
asylum writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 8:06:37 AM

Hello no, although I know someone that wikipedias every movie before he sees it in theaters. Dont know why anyone would want to know the whole movie before they see it. Makes no sense to me.
NotAmerican writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 8:29:48 AM

I understand that spoilers make a movie easier to follow (Harry Potter, LOTR and other books turned movies) but not knowing what happens is much better (final scene of Inception anyone?)
Devil writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 8:33:41 AM

What kind of retarded question is this?
Todd writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 8:36:34 AM

only for movies like memento lol
-Chewy- writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 8:41:53 AM

That question is so retarded it should be illegal to ask it.

It's in the same family as :

- Do you like having fun ?

- Is it better to get beat-up in the street or not ?

- Do you prefer having parents who love you ?


Hope this university adds them.
lppinto writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 8:42:08 AM

So.. Bruce willis is f*cking dead in the Six Sense? NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO.. And John Travolta will get brain cancer at the end of Phenomenon .. NOOOOOO..
Big_Daddy writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 8:55:14 AM

@Rambo


seriously awesome post.
happyguy815 writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 8:56:15 AM

These people who enjoyed the movie better after being spoiled are the same people that otherwise wouldn't have been able to follow the movie in the first place. Of course they're gonna enjoy a movie more if they can understand it, but they're still idiots.
DaveThePhotoGuy writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 9:09:47 AM

Not often.
GuyBushwithWood writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 9:16:16 AM

This is bullsh*t, I think the less the audience knows the better. Apart from the synopsis of course.

It's a good example using the sixth sense for the snapshot. It's one of those movies that knowing the end before it happens spoils the whole thing.

SPOILER IF YOU HAVEN'T SEEN, DON'T READ!!!!

A friend of mine told me Bruce Wills's character in the movie was a ghost a couple of days after it came out. I enjoyed the movie still but not as much as if I hadn't of known.

Some movies hinge on the audience knowing as much as the characters and you almost discover knew things with that character as they happen and progress. These kind of movies would be ruined if you knew what was about to happen beforehand.

Others such as Star Wars Episode III well I was shocked when Anakin turned into Vader, didn't see that coming.
GreenLensman writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 9:17:09 AM

they are more enjoyable when the ending is not utterly predictable
bandolero999 writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 9:47:25 AM

wow you ran out of news today Alex?

here are some good ones we would of laughed at today.George Lopez tonight got cancelled and will have two more episodes so he'll be back into making enchiladas

Mortal Kombat Legacy DVD comes out November

Lindsay Lohans better Dyke half Samantha Ronson charged with DIU

Tyler PErry maybe to have his own channel.So is like another part of BET but has Tyler perry stuff all day
Johnnyb writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 10:25:18 AM

We canīt always say "hell no or "of course" or "sometimes".... It always depend on sometime specific in the story that makes us to want or not to want to know the ending of a movie.....

They are cases when we are drag in because the characters and when we see that they are to close to reach their objectives we donīt want nothing else bad to happen. We just want that they reach their goal which is the happy ending that hollywood has created to us during the last couples or 70 years. But if you are does in some cases that enjoy twist in which you donīt care about your characters, is the same they suffer or not just want to know how or who doin it. Then you donīt want to know from the beginning or any spoiler how the plot is resolve. Just the trick or point of the twist when is made it.

And of course, they are the other cases like sick MF who just enjoy the moment to past or wasting time doing nothing special we just want the character to reach their goal or not, just the same we donīt give a damn if they suffer or we could enjoy it if they suffer.....

As I said before always depends in something, in characters, premise, plots, we canīt say "No I donīt enjoy it knowing the end or yes I enjoy because of....." Because maybe just maybe, we gonna see something that we didnīt expect in case we can accepted or simple reject because our ways to judge the situations are not always the same.....
Big_Daddy writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 10:50:32 AM

Spoilers ahead

the hero always wins
the hero always gets the girl
extras die
the world is always saved

everyone always knows the outcome of every movie
bandolero999 writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 10:57:05 AM

thats in most Américan movies but Hong Kong and Japanese the hero and the bad guy mostly die
Big_Daddy writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 11:02:14 AM

^that's because in Japan and hong kong most of the heroes ARE bad guys by society standards
bandolero999 writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 11:21:04 AM

either that or they die like martyrs
qwertyuiop22ful writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 11:24:24 AM

Yes and no.

Yes, when you are watching a movie with a twist with someone who hasn't seen it yet.

No, because... Well, I'm reading Stephen King's Under the Dome and my uncle's girlfriend told me that I was going to be disappointed by the ending. I got bored because I thought to myself "Why do I keep reading if I'm going to be disappointed?"

So basically, no
The5thBeatle5 writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 11:41:03 AM

WHAT? I enjoy the surprise of a good twist! Whats the point of watching a new movie if you already know the ending? Granted, if it's a movie with some actors I like or if the story seems good, I'll see it eventually.
Stapes writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 11:43:07 AM

Poor example in the photo there... anyone with half a brain knew the ending to Sixth Sense... It's been used numerous times before, just watch the Twilight Zone. M. Knight Shamalamadingdong has spoiled the field for any new brown directors, I blame him for hostilities between India and Pakistan.
Lt. Mike Harrigan writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 11:55:34 AM

Is this a rhetorical question?
coldplayesence writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 12:03:01 PM

Gotta love America when it comes to lazyness.
secondbest writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 12:04:52 PM

For me it depends. I enjoy movies where I've read the book beforehand because I'm interested in how the films were adapted. Then there are times when the ending of a movie can make or break it for me and I don't want to know what it is at all.
encoreyourface writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 1:13:06 PM

what? i f*cking hate having spoilers, and I'm guessing most people do considering every time something about the plot of a movie is revealed, the original poster (or news site such as this) say *SPOILERS AHEAD*
Bouk writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 1:16:16 PM

I can see this. I think the vast majority of movie watchers are pretty stupid. If they know the ending they can just stare at the screen and not think. I think the same thing goes for movie trailers where they tell you the complete story.
President Baltar writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 1:17:21 PM

@ qwertyuiop22ful

I just read that book recently. I had this great ending envisioned that I was really hoping was coming true.
Turned out the ending was a bit lame, but OK.
Just felt like a waste of reading so many pages, but Stephen King has a rep for disappointing endings.
The book version of "It" has a great ending though.
nawtnt writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 1:21:53 PM

No way, the films should ending with a great climax and a twist with the audience not knowing the ending.

Besides why watch a film if you know the ending to the movie but if it is a novel book movie adaption like Harry Potter and you read the book then watching the movie might not be a problem.
PaulX7 writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 1:31:12 PM

"This shows that when people know the twist at the end, they are able to follow the story easier"

So who was targeted in that study? Retard people, who are not able to follow a movie unless they already know the ending? Welcome to the school for the retard children!
Ranger writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 1:48:19 PM

No.

If I knew the ending I wouldn't bother to watch the f*cking thing.
SACdaddy writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 2:24:41 PM

Lol, c'mon guys, y'all have enjoyed plenty of films you already knew the outcomes to. Any historical film, most superhero films, and films based on books or some other pop culture all usually have predetermined conclusions. You still liked TDK, JFK, LOTR, and the Fighter for example. Really, it all depends on the quality of the film and its sourse material.

Don't get me wrong, it can severely hurt a film also. Seeing the doc Breaking Vegas completely ruined 21 for me, but that was because the film was subpar to the doc. Knowing the outcome had little to do with quality of the film. In the long run it all depends on quality.
SACdaddy writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 2:30:43 PM

Thought i'd never say this but I can't wait to see the Fright Night remake. Of course I know the outcome of that film too but I'm very interested in seeing how they get there. Sometimes the journey is more important than the destination.
SACdaddy writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 2:35:17 PM

Sometimes I think the negativity on this site gets in the way of rational thought. Anyone who says they haven't enjoyed a film they already knew the ending to just isn't taking into account all the films they have seen. Sit back and think about it and get back to me.
SACdaddy writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 3:01:38 PM

Hey I bet Batman survives the next movie. If he does does that mean the film will suck?
Big_Daddy writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 3:08:39 PM

^No it does not.....

but fright night will !! get it because its a movie with Vampi......oh nevermind
DexterMorgan writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 3:36:46 PM

sometimes i don't mind knowing thg the ending and sometimes i do
Frank_Castle writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 4:59:16 PM

it depends on the genre. Like most films I usually end up disapointed if the ending turns out as expected. In example, The plot twist in SCREAM 4 dissapointed me. I obviosly knew who was going to turn out the bad guy.
Rambo writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 5:27:28 PM

best ending to any movie is where you end up f*cking your date.
happyguy815 writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 5:57:26 PM

SPOILER: The ending to most porno's is a c*mshot.
masht7 writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 6:49:10 PM

No, I want to be shocked and feel like a fool by the end becuase I didn't know what was really going on. Prime example with 'The Prestige'. I didn't enjoy the original 'Planet of the Apes' as much as I hoped becuase I already knew the twist and felt like erasing that thought and watch the movie again and be suprised. Spoilers destroy a films potential.
Damon242 writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 7:04:49 PM

No.

It's just a matter of paying attention, which seems to be too hard for some people.
Zeroguy writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 7:15:10 PM

Just watch the movie twice. Duh.
OneTime writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 7:15:15 PM

f*ck no
reach110 writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 7:16:57 PM

Couldn't disagree with this more. Interesting how we're using a screen from Sixth Sense, because that was spoiled for me before I saw it. I'm finding more and more that people aren't patient enough to let the story tell itself. Another reason why I hate trailers these days; they give away the whole damn movie in sixty seconds. Call me crazy, but if there's a twist ending or crazy plot device, I prefer to experience it firsthand and then revisit the movie with that knowledge. It's why we invented REWIND. In fact, A lot of times I wish I could erase my knowledge of movies like fight club or Sixth Sense so I can experience that kind of shock again. Provoking thought in an audience IS the art; it's not worth anything if an audience is satisfied with knowing everything from the get-go.
yourmomgivesgoodhead writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 8:17:52 PM

Doesnt really matter because any more most films and especially comic book adapted to the big screen which means that most films endings are pretty much predictable.
Midnight_Toker writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 8:57:53 PM

I always know how my favorite movies will end. She'll jump off the d*ck and open her mouth while the guy c*ms into it. Never ruined the film for me knowing the ending
Ranger writes:
on August 11th, 2011 at 11:19:48 PM

What Rambo said (and not limited to one's date, but some chick in the theater just lonely and needing a fill).
sri_91 writes:
on August 12th, 2011 at 2:24:46 AM

Hilarious question! Was this study performed by a bunch of 5 year olds?
Doomzdae writes:
on August 12th, 2011 at 5:47:13 AM

movies? hard to understand?
perhaps next time u better ask
somebody who can read!
kirklazerusreturns writes:
on August 15th, 2011 at 3:02:04 AM

@bandolero999- tyler perry always has his own channel its called TBS.

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