Monday, January 19, 2015

2015 OSCARS: Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) (2014) - An Open-Ended Ending

 [Quick Summary: A once famous film actor struggles with his ego (and alter-ego) during rehearsals for a stage adaption.]

In this day and age of "give the audience answers," I was pleasantly surprised how the ending of this script was so open to interpretation.

I'd like to post examples, but I cannot do so without revealing spoilers.

So I'll just say this:

The story is is familiar (a man who is trapped by his past), but the way it is told is unorthodox.

The ending works because it is equally familiar and unorthodox: 

-Riggins (Michael Keaton) finishes his arc, but in his own eccentric way.

-The ending wraps up the loose ends, but leaves the last shot open to the audience's imagination.

-There's a hint of resolution, i.e., the characters were "going to be ok", but no spoon feeding of exactly one definitive answer.

WHAT I'VE LEARNED: A little certainty/resolution is helpful before that last open-ended shot.

Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)(2014)
Written by Alejandro G. Iñárritu, Nicolás Giacobone, Alexander Dinelaris, Jr. & Armando Bo

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