Hindi cinema follows certain tropes with great enthusiasm. Romantic movies end with lovers uniting, patriotic movies end with one person conquering it all, and sports dramas end with India’s victory followed by a rousing celebration.

And I understand why that happens. Because our cinema functions a lot on aspiration as a major chunk of viewers watches these movies for distraction. 

The Wire/Danish Siddiqui

However, if done correctly, unconventional endings can be really beautiful and show a realistic point of view without making things heavy. Here are some examples of the same from recent times.

1. Lootera

Based on the short story The Last Leaf by O. Henry, Lootera ends on a rather tragic note but it’s written so beautifully that the depth of the climax stays with you for a very long time. In the final moments of the film, everything comes together in a manner that it seems like there was no other way things could have ended. 


2. The Lunchbox

The Lunchbox isn’t a movie with insane plot twists and the ones it has, are shown with extreme subtlety. I like to think of it as a patiently cooked meal, put together painstakingly but with so much efficiency, that for the ones at the dining table, no part of it is separate from the other. 

The movie blends, and though it leaves you wanting to learn more about what happens next, you know it’s probably best that you don’t.


3. October

Juhi Chaturvedi, the writer of the movie, has a very gentle glance when it comes to grief. There are things that only she can manage to do. October is not a movie about death, it is a movie about the journey to it, and how, knowing that someone probably won’t make it, sometimes gives people unsubstantiated, overpowering confidence that they will.


4. Masaan

The ending of Masaan is not only profound but also deeply symbolic, which shouldn’t come as a surprise if you have followed Varun Grover’s work. Unfortunately, I cannot reveal it without giving away some key elements of the plot, but in all honesty, I wouldn’t dare to explain it in two lines anyway. 

So let’s just say that Masaan ends with the merging of two words and their sadnesses, giving one hope that the coming together of two broken hearts, in whatever capacity, will lead to something good.


5. Meri Pyaari Bindu

One thinks of 500 Days Of Summer when watching Meri Pyaari Bindu but the thought doesn’t stay in the head for too long because the nuances of this Suprotim Sengupta script are very unique. It does not have a sad ending, just unconventional. The movie challenges the idea of love, in all its forms – platonic, sexual, romantic, fulfilling, and naturally then, unfulfilling.


6. Dear Zindagi

Moving away from the tripe of the protagonist ending up with the one they desire despite all odds, Dear Zindagi shows that sometimes you don’t. But that’s only the romantic side of the story, which has so much more to offer. 

The script, written by Gauri Shinde, focuses on the growth of a young woman, battling with childhood traumas and making it work in the end – just not in a manner that we are accustomed to witnessing.


7. Rang De Basanti

The lives of the protagonists in Rang De Basanti closely follow those of the freedom fighters they are going to play in a film. Hence, as a viewer, you are aware that you are in for an emotional ending. However, thanks to brilliant writing and acting performances, the climax does not feel heavy. 

It makes you think about your duties and the sacrifices of those who came before us, and leaves you thinking that if we try, maybe we can change things in the world.

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8. Sir

Sir shows how closely class is associated with love, and what happens when a person tries to break the rules. The movie doesn’t end with the protagonists coming together against all odds but there is a strong indication that they will. 


9. Dil Bechara

Dil Bechara is the official adaptation of John Green’s novel, The Fault in Our Stars, and gives a message on life while having disease and death as its core themes. Its ending leaves you with tears in your eyes but also a smile on your face, thanks to warmth in the writing and acting performances.

The Print

These are all movies with endings that were unexpected but have made a special place in our hearts.