Sunday, January 24, 2010

AFT Awards: Best Ending

Beware spoilers for “A Serious Man,” “Avatar,” “Fast & Furious,” “Julia,” and “Duplicity.”

This is the twenty-fourth category of the 3rd Annual AFT Film Awards to be announced. The AFT Awards are my own personal choices for the best in film of each year and the best in television of each season. The AFT Film Awards include the traditional Oscar categories and a number of additional specific honors. Nominees are pictured in the order I’ve ranked them. Click here to see previous years of this category.

The winner:
A Serious Man brought its peculiar end to a swift, mesmerizing end. Just as things are leveling off, there’s news of torrential weather on the radar. Danny’s class is evacuated, and he is finally ready to pay off his bully. As he tries to give him the money, he is struck by the sight of what is coming toward him: a fast-approaching tornado. It’s a shocking, speedy finale that really leaves its viewers with a puzzled expression on their faces in the most fantastic way.

Other nominees:
Avatar finally gave its hero what he wanted all along: a chance to become one with the Na’vi. As his human body is laid down next to his avatar and the Na’vi all try to make his body leap, the eyes of his avatar burst open and the title of the film appears on the screen. The ensuing visuals accompanied by the song “I See You” seal the deal.

Fast & Furious was about to send Dominic Toretto to jail, but somehow that wasn’t going to happen. Instead, police officer Brian O’Conner, Toretto’s sister, and some new buddies prepare to hijack the prison bus. It’s an ending so ridiculously awesome that even Toretto can’t believe it, and he shakes his head, laughing, as Brian pulls up and spins his wheels, preparing for the big take.

Julia turned its protagonist into someone she never thought she’d be. After going to such lengths and enduring so much to try to earn some extra cash, Julia gives it all up to protect the safety of the boy she kidnapped. Her last line and the expression on her face is priceless: “I’m taking you back to your mother.”

Duplicity pulled the rug out from under its triple agents as their ridiculously well-constructed plan was destroyed by the simplest fabrication on the part of Howard Tully. Their reactions are completely worth it, and it’s also a nice touch to see the utter dismay on the face of Richard Garsik, who realizes his career is over now that he’s announced a revolutionary product that doesn’t exist at all.

The AFT Awards will resume and conclude in February. Final Oscar predictions begin tomorrow.

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