I'm Thinking of Ending Things - A Netflix Movie Review
'I'm Thinking of Ending Things' is not what you think it is about.
Nobody knows what is going on inside somebody’s head. Maybe that’s a good thing.
I’m Thinking of Ending Things is a 2020 psychological Netflix film. Jake takes his girlfriend to meet his parents on their secluded farm. The visit is bizarre. Questioning their relationship, things only become all the more strange on the drive home in a snow storm.
By the end of the film, I’m sure that you are slouching with your head leaning against your hand trying to figure out what is going on like I was. I’m Thinking of Ending Things is a bizarre film. This film is not about what you think it is about. That’s what makes it a great film to sit down and analyze.
The first twenty minutes of the film focuses on a car ride with the main couple. Based on the distant relationship, how they interact, and awkward moments obviously this couple have a strained relationship. This is how you start a film. I was invested.
Jesse Plemons and Jessie Buckley were outstanding in their roles. For a film like this, they really had to dig deep into their subconscious. Every expression, conversation, and interaction is delivered very well. There is a hidden meaning behind all these conversations.
Buckley’s poetic and deep narratives amplify her distaste about this relationship. I was so invested in her character that I was not aware of the actual purpose. Jake (Plemons) is jealous of his girlfriend’s talented abilities along with the way his parents praise her. This film is more about Jake than his girlfriend who has various names.
Get ready for the best unhinged performances from Toni Collete and David Thewlis. As Jake’s parents, they are strange. Very strange to say the least. So strange that they turn young or old throughout the night. The dinner scene completely cements their characters, relationship with their son, and peculiar laughter mixed with the stuttering of their words.
Every character has a purpose in I’m Thinking of Ending Things. Guy Boyd, Hadley Robinson, Gus Birney, and Abby Quinn have specific roles that are necessary to the message of the film. There is even a beautiful ballet sequence performed by Frederick Wodin, Ryan Steele, and Unity Phelan which embodies the real story of the film.
As I said, I’m Thinking of Ending Things is a film that you have to pay very close attention to. There were many moments where I kept saying ‘what?’ trying to figure out how this makes sense to the story. I wrote four pages of notes while watching this film logging down each detail. A lot of sequences felt out of nowhere, especially the dance at the end.
Only a director like Charlie Kaufman could establish the strange atmosphere of I’m Thinking of Ending Things. His camera angles, sound effects, and definition of the film are extraordinary. The car sequences are incredibly directed, even saturating the color to blend in with the tone of the conversations.
Kaufman made the most subtle changes to get inside the head of one of the main characters. Nobody ever knows what is going on inside somebody’s head. His use of unusual coloring, camera techniques, and utmost perplexing character direction should earn him a nomination for the best director in my opinion.
Avoid any spoilers all together before watching this film. I’m Thinking of Ending Things is a film that you have to see twice, or heck even ten times to understand. After, I strongly recommend that you analyze the meaning behind this film because it makes better sense. Make some popcorn, find it on Netflix, and enjoy it.