The “twist ending” has long been a Hollywood staple. Moviemakers lover to blow away their audiences with an unexpected and surprising plot turn that forces viewers to reassess everything they thought they knew about the story. While most great examples occur in a movie’s final moments, there are also several compelling twists which take place earlier in the story, sending it in a new and unpredictable direction. This approach is more commonly used in dramatic stories, while the straight-up twist ending is usually found in the thriller/horror genre.
Spoiler alert! Here are 10 examples of great plot twists nobody saw coming.
10. Orphan (2009)
This creepy 2009 horror/thriller divided audiences — some loved it, some didn’t. Even so, there’s no denying that the movie contains one of the most unsettling twists in recent movie history.
Orphan tells the story of a couple recovering from the recent loss of their infant daughter, and they decide to adopt an orphan girl to fill the void left in their lives by the tragedy. Soon after taking in the titular orphan, things take a dark turn and it’s soon clear that the couple has invited an unspeakably evil presence into their home.
The big twist? The orphan girl — who appears to be nine years old — is actually a grown woman with a rare growth disorder and a violent sexual appetite for the “daddies” who have previously adopted her. The twist comes as the movie moves into its third act, setting up an extremely creepy finale where the orphan girl attempts to seduce her adoptive father as her adoptive mother races home to reveal the truth.