Charlie Kaufman’s I’m Thinking of Ending Things (2020) is about a young lady who travels with her new boyfriend to his parent’s secluded farm. Even though this plot sounds very simple, this existential art house drama is WAY WAY WAY more complex.
This is a film that is going to polarise a lot of people, because the film is not straight forward at all, and I absolutely loved it. This is one of the weirdest films to have come out in a very long time. A lot of things happen that’ll make you go what the fuck. It’ll make you think super hard when you try to make sense of it. Throughout the movie you’ll be puzzled, and you’ll ask questions like, “ Why is this character behaving like this?” “How is this character important to the story?” “What is this scene supposed to mean?” And it’s totally okay to be confused. Charlie Kaufman has deliberately not told the story in a straight forward way. There are many clues throughout the film so you have to pay 100 per cent attention to it. It’s not an easy watch by any means, you have to absorb each and every dialogue. Every word coming out of the character’s mouth is important in order to decipher the plot details.
Of course there is Charlie Kaufman’s signature flavour throughout. Both the characters are existential and cynical- always talking about philosophical stuff. The film is also heavy on literature references and the way Kaufman’s used them is super meta. They play a part in the story in some way or the other. The performances are top notch, Jessie Buckley, Jesse Plemons, Toni Collette, David Thewlis are all excellent. Most of the film involves super long conversations. This is a film that you won’t fully understand, so you are just supposed to enjoy this ride. I like these kinds of films, this film will make you think for days and will evoke conversations amongst cinephiles. It’s hard to talk about the film without getting into spoilers but I’ll just say that broadly it’s about dreams, memories, fantasies and time. One of the things it makes us question is, “Does time pass through us? Or do we pass through time?”
I’m Thinking of Endings Things is an art house movie that I would only recommend if you’re a fan of this genre. It may get frustrating if you are not used to watching these kinds of films, because most of the film is ambiguous and would take a lot of effort to fully decipher. It is a masterfully crafted arthouse drama and it’s another example of the genius of Charlie Kaufman.