Tension at the top of Netflix enrages viewers

"Where is the rest of the movie?" some ask, while others argue that they "missed the point"

6 mins read
Leave the World Behind premiered at AFI Fest in Los Angeles on October 25, 2023 (Netflix)

Netflix’s highly anticipated new movie divided the viewers in two. While some complained that the ending was “unsatisfying”, others praised it as thought-provoking.

Leave The World Behind stars Julia Roberts, Ethan Hawke, Mahershala Ali and Myha’la Herrol.

The Obamas’ production company

Netflix briefly summarizes the plot of the apocalyptic thriller centered on two families struggling to survive in the midst of a global catastrophe:

A family’s weekend getaway in a luxury rental house takes an uncanny turn when a cyber-attack corrupts all their devices and two strangers show up on their doorstep.

Based on the 2020 book of the same name by American author Rumaan Alam, the film was directed by Sam Esmail and produced by Barack and Michelle Obama’s production company Higher Ground.

Critics loved it, moviegoers raged

Lasting 2 hours and 20 minutes, the movie managed to get a score of 75 out of 100 on the review aggregation site Rotten Tomatoes. Moviegoers, however, do not share the same opinion as the critics. The movie’s audience score is only 40.

Critics loved it, moviegoers raged

Lasting 2 hours and 20 minutes, the movie managed to get a score of 75 out of 100 on the review aggregation site Rotten Tomatoes. Moviegoers, however, do not share the same opinion as the critics. The movie’s audience score is only 40.

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One angry viewer took to Twitter to complain about the ending of the movie:

Whose idea was it to end Leave the World Behind like this? I want to talk to them alone for a minute…

A second social media user wrote:

I just saw Leave the World Behind. They ran out of money at the end?! That’s weird.

Another viewer added:

Leave the World Behind confused me, why did they end it at the most exciting part?

“Two hours I can’t get back”

One viewer was much angrier and harshly critical:

Two hours I’ll never get back. Horrible ending. Unlikeable characters. Netflix garbage.

One viewer pointed out both positive and negative points about the thriller:

Leave the World Behind is a strange movie. I like the acting, it’s well shot, it looks great. The editing is very good, it keeps adding layers of mystery. Until you get to the end, it becomes a complete nothingness, there’s really no payoff.

“I really want to know what the makers of Leave the World Behind were thinking when they came up with this ending,” wrote one social media user criticizing the film’s ending.

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“Where’s the rest of the movie?”

One moviegoer added that the movie made him angry:

Leave the World Behind made me so angry. Where’s the rest of the movie?!

Another tweeter addressed viewers who agreed with him:

Who else watched Julia Roberts’ Leave the World Behind, released today, sat on the edge of their seat through the chilling suspense, but then was absolutely disgusted by the ending?

Referring to the finale of the thriller, one user wrote:

These conspiracy movies always have open endings. Leave the World Behind was a great watch, but that ending was unsatisfying.

But some viewers also advised people to “take note”, explaining that people missed the point of the ending and that it was a deliberate choice with a deeper meaning behind it.

“One of the top 5 endings of all time”

A satisfied moviegoer wrote:

Leave the World Behind is overall an extremely good movie. The ending is no joke, one of the top 5 endings of all time. It was perfect in terms of filmmaking.

Someone else agreed:

Leave the World Behind has one of the best endings of any movie this year.

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A third person wrote the following:

Stop worrying about the end of Leave the World Behind and listen to what is being said.

Citing the famous classic, a viewer said:

People who don’t understand the ending of Leave the World Behind on Netflix will really struggle when they watch the classic Planet Of The Apes.

Rumaan, the author of Leave the World Behind, said that director Sam Esmail was very good and that he found the ending of the movie “very satisfying”.

“I love it so much”

Speaking to Variety, Rumaan said:

I say it’s funny, but I don’t think it’s a joke. I don’t think it’s a joke on Rose. I don’t think it’s a joke on the audience. I don’t think it’s a joke on Friends.

“It reminds us that art is a kind of balm,” the author continued:

The theatrical experience of watching this movie is very powerful because I’ve had the chance to see the audience’s reaction to the ending three times now and nobody knows exactly what to make of it. Is it funny? Is it horrible? Is it really over? And I love that very much.

Daily Mail, Variety, Rotten Tomatoes

 

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