More usually than not, the protagonist of a movie is usually the “winner” of that story. Most motion pictures, and certainly most tales normally, see the primary character attaining some form of victory by the top. Whether the protagonist goes by trials and tribulations to attain their purpose or if it simply works out of their favor, they normally succeed or come out on prime by the point the credit roll.
Audiences not often get to see the primary character lose. Even in situations the place the protagonist is the villain or turns into morally corrupt, we see them win extra usually than lose, even when “winning” entails them failing at a purpose, however studying one thing or changing into a greater individual alongside the way in which.
Even extra uncommon than seeing the primary character lose is when the primary character loses though they’ve carried out the whole lot proper. A protagonist may method their circumstances one of the simplest ways they’ll and do nothing fallacious, leaving audiences devastated when it does not work out for them. But it is also reasonable — generally life is like that, too. This tragic circumstance is maybe greatest summarized in Star Trek: The Next Generation by Captain Jean-Luc Picard:
It is feasible to commit no errors and nonetheless lose. That just isn’t a weak spot. That is life.
The horror style excels at exploring this case. After all, the concept of a protagonist doing nothing fallacious and nonetheless shedding will be fairly a horrific ending. But movies in different genres have carried out it too. Here are 10 motion pictures the place the primary character does the whole lot proper, however nonetheless loses.
Article comprises main spoilers
10 Don’t Look Up (2021)
Directed by Adam McKay, Don’t Look Up is a sci-fi dramedy that follows two low-level astronomers who uncover an approaching comet that may destroy Earth. To warn the world’s inhabitants concerning the planet-destroying comet hurdling in direction of them, the 2 scientists go on an enormous media tour. However, nobody appears to take them critically, not even the President of the United States.
Why Randall and Kate Lose
The means that astronomers Randall (Leonardo DiCaprio) and Kate (Jennifer Lawrence) are handled once they attempt to get the world to give attention to one extraordinarily essential difficulty (the comet being a stand-in for local weather change) is sadly paying homage to the way in which society consumes information and the media.
Every time a celeb did one thing or there was a brand new viral development, it knocked the approaching comet out of the information cycle, leaving the astronomers looking for methods to get the eye again on them. Kate and Randall attempt the whole lot they’ll to get society to give attention to the one factor that would really wipe out the planet, however on the finish of the day, our brief consideration span wins out and humanity is unable to be saved.
Stream Don’t Look Up on Netflix
9 Would You Rather (2012)
Starring ’80s sci-fi horror icon Jeffery Combs and modern-day scream queen Brittany Snow, Would You Rather is a horror thriller that follows a younger lady named Iris (Snow). Desperate to assist her ailing brother, Iris accepts an invite to a cocktail party hosted by an aristocrat the place the winner of the night’s video games will go residence with a money prize. Unbeknownst to Iris, the video games shall be lethal for the individuals.
Why Iris Loses
After realizing that the video games are sadistic and there isn’t any means out of the home on her personal, she unwillingly participates within the video games to the very best of her skill. While a few of the attendees forgo their humanity to win the cash and make it out alive, Iris nonetheless clings to her humanity and tries her greatest to not harm anybody else. She does issues that may hang-out her for the remainder of her life however makes use of her wits to attempt to outsmart the chief of the video games.
Iris finally ends up being the only real winner, however she loses a part of herself within the course of. Her true loss comes on the finish, nevertheless, when she lastly returns residence after the hellish night time. She discovers that her sick brother took his personal life whereas she was gone, and all of the horrible issues she endured the night time earlier than have been for nothing.
Stream Would You Rather on Hulu
8 Night of the Living Dead (1968)
George A. Romero’s Night of the Living Dead is not only a zombie basic, it is a horror basic that has formed the style for many years. The movie follows a bunch of unlikely Pennsylvania residents who cover in a distant countryside home after the useless begin rising from their graves.
They are led by Ben (Duane Jones), who boards up the home windows and doorways, and tries to assist the six different individuals in the home survive the night time, at the same time as their chance of survival deteriorates by the minute.
Why Ben Loses
Ben does the whole lot proper from begin to end. He boards up all entrances and exits in the home, relentlessly tries to maintain everybody calm, and he even tries to determine methods to defeat the zombies with out leaving the home. He is a real chief who makes the survival of everybody his prime precedence.
Ben finally ends up making it by the night time regardless of push-back from one of many different survivors, and the hordes of zombies that surrounded the property. Despite doing the whole lot proper, Ben nonetheless meets a tragic destiny the subsequent morning.
What makes this loss so horrible is that he survived the zombie assault, however died by the hands of different people, who assumed he was one of many strolling useless. It’s additionally a biting social commentary that Ben dies this manner, as he’s a Black man, and Romero was recognized for addressing social points in his movies.
Stream Night of the Living Dead on Peacock
7 They Cloned Tyrone (2023)
The Netflix movie They Cloned Tyrone is considered one of 2023’s most underrated motion pictures. The sci-fi darkish comedy follows a person named Fontaine (John Boyega) who’s shot useless by a rival drug vendor and is shocked to get up the subsequent morning in his mattress.
When his buddies Slick (Jamie Foxx) and Yo-Yo (Teyonah Parris) begin discovering eerie situations as effectively, the trio bands collectively to determine what is going on on, and uncover an underground authorities lab the place experiments and cloning are being performed on the Black inhabitants.
Why Fontaine Loses
After discovering what the American authorities is doing of their city, Fontaine and his buddies make it their mission to infiltrate the lab and shut down the experiments. They work out how the federal government is controlling the residents of their city and easy methods to cease it, then destroy the lab and free the individuals trapped inside.
When the information spreads, Fontaine and his buddies understand this has been occurring in cities throughout the nation. Not solely that, however Fontaine sees a reproduction of himself in one other city, and it’s found that the identical clones are being made in every single place, and there isn’t any means of figuring out who’s an actual individual. Though they stopped one operation, Fontaine does not know, and should by no means know, if he’s actual or simply one other clone.
Stream They Cloned Tyrone on Netflix
6 You’re Next (2011)
The horror-comedy You’re Next takes place within the distant hillside mansion of Aubrey and Paul Davidson (Barbara Crampton, Rob Moran), who’re planning on internet hosting an anniversary feast with their grownup youngsters in an try to fix damaged household ties. When the household falls underneath assault by masked assailants, their son Crispian’s (AJ Bowen) girlfriend, Erin (Sharni Vinson), takes cost and exhibits the attackers that she has an uncanny skill to combat again.
Why Erin Loses
Erin has an unbelievable intuition in terms of defending herself and the household. She constantly outsmarts the attackers and bests them in bodily fights. Erin takes them down one after the other, anticipating their strikes and utilizing them towards the assailants.
Erin ultimately learns their true identities and the rationale behind the unprovoked assault. Even when she defeats the attackers and is the final one standing, her expertise and intelligence wind up being ineffective ultimately. Just as she has killed the final of the assailants, the police arrive and mistake her as one of many criminals, taking pictures her. She survives, however ultimately credit, it is revealed that she is the prime suspect for the occasions of the night time.
Rent You’re Next on Prime Video
5 Avengers: Infinity War (2018)
- Release Date
- April 25, 2018
- Anthony Russo , Anthony Russo
In the second to final installment of the Avengers’ story, Avengers: Infinity War, the group of heroes face off towards their largest risk but. With Thanos’ plan to safe all six Infinity Stones virtually full, Earth’s Mightiest Heroes have one final probability to take the stones again and cease Thanos from erasing half of all life from the galaxy. The destiny of existence weighs on their shoulders.
Why the Avengers Lose
In most MCU motion pictures, like most superhero motion pictures, the heroes come out on prime on the finish. Even once they make sacrifices alongside the way in which, we virtually all the time see the superheroes defeat their villains. Avengers: Infinity War is likely one of the uncommon situations through which the heroes are defeated (although by the sequel Endgame, the heroes are certainly triumphant).
The Avengers do the whole lot of their energy to cease Thanos, together with touring into house and forming allies with different superheroes. For as soon as, the Avengers put apart their variations and belief one another utterly. Still, once they have Thanos inside attain, it isn’t sufficient for them to cease him. He snaps his fingers sporting the Infinity Gauntlet, and though the heroes did the whole lot proper, Thanos successfully wipes out half of all life from existence.
Stream Avengers: Infinity War on Disney+
4 The Hunt (2012)
Danish filmmaker Thomas Vinterburg’s The Hunt is a drama targeted on the lifetime of a lonely instructor named Lucas (Mads Mikkelsen), who’s preventing for custody of his son. His life slowly begins to get higher when he begins a brand new relationship and receives excellent news from his son, however his luck is about to be shattered when a lie conceived by considered one of his college students wrecks his life.
Why Lucas Loses
Lucas’ younger scholar Klara (Annika Wedderkop) develops emotions for him, and when Lucas politely explains that it’s inappropriate for a kid to behave on these emotions with an grownup, little Klara lies about what actually occurred as a result of she was harm.
That one lie turns the whole city towards him, inflicting him to be the city’s outcast. The native grocery retailer will not even let him store there. He is savagely overwhelmed by individuals he as soon as referred to as his buddies. When Klara lastly admits the reality, he’s slowly capable of choose up the items of his life as soon as once more. Nevertheless, sure townspeople are nonetheless uneasy round him, and considered one of them even makes an attempt to kill him.
Stream The Hunt on Tubi
3 Se7en (1995)
- Release Date
- September 22, 1995
David Fincher’s crime thrillerSe7en follows two murder detectives, rookie Mills (Brad Pitt) and veteran Somerset (Morgan Freeman), as they relentlessly attempt to observe down a sadistic serial killer who justifies his crimes as absolution for the world’s ignorance of the Seven Deadly Sins. Using every of the sins because the motive for every of his murders, John Doe (Kevin Spacey) sermonizes to the detectives as he lures them from the tortured stays of 1 sufferer to the subsequent.
Why Detectives Mills and Somerset Lose
The detectives observe this case intently and exactly all through the whole film. Despite their totally different strategies of approaching a case as intricate as this, they find yourself working effectively collectively to catch their killer. They observe the clues and piece collectively his motive, and ultimately have the chance to catch him and serve him the punishment he deserves.
But when Doe reveals the ultimate levels of his plan, which sends Detective Mills over the sting. When the three of them arrive within the desert, Mills receives a disturbing package deal, which Somerset opens. Upon realizing his pregant spouse’s head is contained in the field, the devastated detective unknowingly completes the ultimate a part of Doe’s grasp plan — fulfilling the Sin of Wrath, and killing Doe in chilly blood. Detective Somerset closes out the thematic ending with narration:
“Ernest Hemingway once wrote: ‘The world is a fine place, and worth fighting for.’ I agree with the second part.”
Stream Se7en on Max
2 Requiem for a Dream (2000)
Darren Aronofsky’s hallucinogenic dramaRequiem for a Dream follows the troubled lives of 4 Coney Island residents. There’s Sara (Ellen Burstyn), a retired widow whose dream is to be on a particular actuality TV present, and her son Harry (Jared Leto), who’s a heroin addict, however has targets he needs to attain along with his greatest buddy and fellow addict Tyrone (Marlon Wayans).
Lastly, there’s Harry’s girlfriend, Marion, who may very well be a dressmaker or artist, however is swept up in Harry’s drug-centric world. Eventually, even his mom is slowed down by a nasty drug behavior.
Why the Coney Island Foursome Loses
Despite their greatest intentions to enhance their lives, all 4 principal characters succumb to dependancy. Harry tries to be higher in the one methods he is aware of how, however he falls prey to his dependancy ultimately, as does Tyrone.
Sara had turn out to be so satisfied by her personal delusions that she may very well be on her favourite actuality present if she simply misplaced weight that she grew to become addicted, successfully destroying the remaining shreds of her psychological state. Marion, the one with essentially the most potential, inevitably turns into wrapped up on the earth of medication as a direct results of her relationship with Harry and winds up humiliating herself for extra heroin.
The movie is named one of many extra horrific and brutally reasonable motion pictures about drug dependancy and the devastating results it has on the lives of not simply addicts, however everybody round them, too.
Stream Requiem for a Dream on Tubi
1 The Mist (2007)
Based on Stephen King’s novel of the identical identify, The Mist takes place in a small city in Maine after a significant storm sweeps the realm. In its wake, the storm leaves a mysterious fog-like mist behind that appears to harbor one thing harmful.
When David Drayton (Thomas Jane) takes his son Billy (Nathan Gamble) and their neighbor Brent (Andre Braugher) into city to get provides, they discover themselves trapped with different locals in a grocery retailer and understand that the mist is residence to terrifying, lethal creatures.
Why David Loses
Once he realizes that leaving the grocery retailer and going into the mist just isn’t a viable possibility, David rapidly begins fascinated with easy methods to hold his son secure and make the shop a brand new residence base for everybody caught there. He primarily turns into the chief of the group, as he repeatedly tries to maintain everybody secure and sane of their new actuality.
David principally succeeds at this, and is ultimately capable of escort his son and some others by the mist and to his truck. When he and the opposite three adults understand there is no such thing as a escape from the mist, they resolve to finish their lives somewhat than die by the monsters. After serving to the remainder of them commit suicide, David steps out of the automotive to be taken by the creatures. However, as he does this, the mist dissipates, and he realizes they have been moments away from rescue.
Stream The Mist on Starz