The Best Reactions To Netflix’s Utterly Baffling Film ‘I’m Thinking Of Ending Things’

No spoilers, just confusion.

I'm Thinking Of Ending Things spawns confused reactions online

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Charlie Kaufman’s latest film I’m Thinking Of Ending Things was released last week on Netflix, and it might be the writer-director’s least accessible film yet, with many viewers utterly baffled by the film. (And no, there are no spoilers below).

Kaufman is well-known for cerebral films, having written some of the more high-concept and meta major films of the past two decades, including Being John Malkovich, Adaptation., Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind and Synecdoche, New York, the last of which he also directed.

I’m Thinking Of Ending Things is his third time directing one of his own scripts, and is a less-than-faithful adaptation of the 2016 horror novel of the same name by Iain Reid, with Kaufman shifting things around as he sees fit.

It follows a young woman (Jessie Buckley) who goes on a car trip with new-ish boyfriend Jake (Jesse Plemons) to meet his parents (Toni Colette, David Thewlis) at their rural farm. Things are tense: she’s thinking of ending the relationship, and given how awkward their conversations are in the car, it’s pretty clear the two aren’t working.

Things quickly get weirder and weirder — while the film never quite becomes a horror, it has an uneasy, unnerving tone, as time and space appear to fold in on themselves.

What follows is a strange, delightfully odd film, where characters quote large and unattributed passages of film reviews from the ’70s, monologues from Russell Crowe films and moments from Oklahoma!.

There’s method in the madness (and this IndieWire interview with Kaufman explains some of the choices), but for those not quite ready for the illogical structure and constantly abrasive scenes, it’s a real spin-out.

As a result, reviewers and audiences alike are split between calling it pretentious genius (or is that ‘genus’?) and pretentious drivel. Where The Guardian calls it “daringly unexpected”, Variety says it a “didactically morose” film and a “Debbie Downer dud”.

Regardless of where you land, it’s quite the ride to get there. Find some reactions below from people struggling to work out how they feel. It’s now streaming on Netflix.