There are a ton of movies with giant plot holes that leave the audience frustrated with unanswered questions. Who was that guy? Why did they kill that person? How could that possibly happen!?
This is NOT that list.
True unanswered questions are purposely built into movies that will keep people speculating forever. Movie moments that cause endless debates among fans.
This top 10 list features some of the most talented filmmakers of all time with Quentin Tarantino, J.J Abrams and Christopher Nolan making appearances among others.
Are these the best unanswered movie mysteries of all time?
Weigh in by commenting below. (Note: Spoilers ahead.)
THE MAN WITH NO NAME TRILOGY
WHAT’S CLINT’S NAME?
The nominees are:
1) Joe – A Fistful of Dollars
2) Manco – For a Few Dollars More
3) Blondie – The Good, The Bad & The Ugly
CHILDREN OF MEN
WHAT CAUSED THE INFERTILITY?
Children of Men is based on the idea that humans have become infertile and can no longer reproduce. The thought provoking film then takes you on an amazing journey of hope that we will find a way to avoid extinction… But what caused the infertility?
While the movie never gives any specific reason, one can turn to some of the common causes of infertility. This article breaks down a few of them. This doesn’t answer the extremely grim future the film depicts but at least it reassures us we are no where close to that future.
DOES THE TOP FALL?
Does the top fall or not? Everyone has a different opinion and that’s the beauty of Inception’s brilliant ending. Is he still dreaming or does he finally reunite with his children? When I saw this film in theaters the entire audience gasped when the credits rolled. That’s an ending!
Here is a fantastic article from Screenrant that explains why it doesn’t matter if the top falls or not. What matters is Cobb’s overall journey. That article links to another story where Christopher Nolan himself confirms that theory on how Inception’s ending should be interpreted.
Personally, I think it hugely important that Cobb isn’t looking at the top but I also think it wobbles and will EVENTUALLY fall. Where do you stand?
Lieutenant Aldo Raine’s scar hints at an extremely violent encounter from his past. Who slit his throat and presumably left him for dead? Is it a rope burn? Did someone try to hang him? Was he dragged behind a horse? Did he survive a lynching?
Some articles have suggested he was punished for bootlegging. Another report states that Tarantino suggested it was the KKK. It has never been confirmed but all signs point to an encounter somewhere near his home in Southern United States.
FUN FACT: This isn’t the first time Tarantino has hinted at injuries in his movies. What’s with the band aid on the back of Marcellus Wallace’s neck in Pulp Fiction? More on that later…
WHAT CAUSED THE END OF THE WORLD?
There are so many ‘end of the world’ scenarios that have been explored in movies. Nuclear war, mother nature, meteors, disease, infertility and more… So what caused the world to end in The Road?
You can pretty much pick any of the above but there have been more theories about what cataclysmic event obliterated our species. Solar storms? Earthquakes? Some people think the author of the novel Cormac McCarthy never intended to define the event even in his own mind.
I don’t think I would have waited as long as Chuck did to open those packages. If I’m stranded on an island, I’m opening those things immediately to look for useful items. Still, you have to admire him for leaving one unopened. It’s a package that he feels saved his life. But… What’s in there!? Was it useful? Could it have helped him?
If you hunt for an Easter egg on the DVD you will find out that the box contained a solar powered, water proof, satellite phone. This is according to the director Robert Zemeckis. I suppose it would have been useful…
Note: The audio clip is found in the Videos and Stills section (Disc 2) by pressing left on the Raft Escape.
WHERE DID THE MONSTER COME FROM?
For a long time leading up to Cloverfield’s theatrical release, fans were obsessed with discovering what the creature looked like. Fake images and photoshopped monsters appeared everywhere online and speculation grew at a rapid pace. By the time the film was released, people knew what ‘Cloverfield’ looked like but a much larger question loomed when the movie was over. Where did it come from?
Fans of the film will no doubt point to the scene on Coney Island at the end of the film when a strange object is seen falling from space into the ocean. This would suggest that the creature came from space. Not so fast… Master of Mystery and Cloverfield producer J.J Abrams described the monster as:
“A baby. He’s brand-new. He’s confused, disoriented and irritable. And he’s been down there in the water for thousands and thousands of years.”
If it’s been down there so long, then why did it take so long before it surfaced? What about the strange falling object? According to this site, it’s a satellite and that the recovery of the satellite awakens the monster. The page also has a clip from the credits where a voice proclaims that the monster is still alive. Sequel? Please?
MISSION IMPOSSIBLE 3
THE RABBIT’S FOOT
J.J Abrams is at it again in Mission Impossible 3. Much of the film revolves around the retrieval of an object known only as The Rabbit’s Foot. It’s basically a thermos with some fancy logos on it but what does it do?
Apparently J.J Abrams is good at creating mysterious… Things…
THE DARK KNIGHT
THE JOKER’S SCARS
One of the most fascinating aspects of Christopher Nolan’s vision of The Joker is the origin of his scars. No doubt the result of a violent act either committed by himself or inflicted by another. Nothing is certain except it was an amazing performance and one of the coolest villains of all time.
The Joker himself offers 2 possibilities in the film. Either he got the scars from his abusive father or he did it to himself for his former bride. Check out both of his explanations here. I looked around on some message boards and found a couple theories involving ziplines and a horrific accident involving beans and toast… It’s anyone’s guess but the entire point to The Joker is to keep his past dark and mysterious.
How many different stories do you think he told people over the years? He probably had a dozens of gruesome tales.
Pulp Fiction is packed with so many cool moments that you almost forget the mysterious orange glow in Marcellus Wallace’s briefcase. What is in the briefcase?
There are hundreds of theories out there. Is it simply a light bulb? A few suggest the case contains connections to other Tarantino films like the diamonds from Reservoir Dogs. Some believe it’s a nuclear bomb. (Which is ridiculous.)
One interesting thought is that Marcellus Wallace sold his soul and is trying to buy it back. Hence the band aid on the back of his neck. It’s the most imaginative theory I came across. Apparently when the Devil takes your soul he takes it from the back of your neck. There’s your fun fact of the day I suppose.