It’s been ten years since Mean Girls came out. I was eleven. A lot has changed in those ten years, but we will never forget the lessons we learned—one of which is how to end a story.
I’m horrible at ending stories. I always end up with weird, ambiguous endings simply because I can’t come up with any real twist or drop. And it always made me laugh thinking of Tina Fey, or one of her writers, and they’re trying to figure out how to end the movie, and someone says, “What if she gets hit by a bus?”
Well, sure. That’s perfect.
Maybe sometimes simpler is better. And I’m aware that’s not the entire ending, that words get said, things wrapped up, bla, bla, bla. But if someone asked you what happened at the end of Mean Girls, would you say she made up with her parents? Split a crown into a bunch of pieces? I wouldn’t. I would say it ended with a bus.
A lot of other movies came out in 2004. A lot of great movies. But would they all be a little greater if they had the plot solution of Mean Girls? The great ending of the 2004 saga?
1. Harry Potter and The Prisoner of Azkaban
Magic is fine and all, but Harry should have thought of this one. Bus.
2. The Bourne Supremacy
Pamela Landy, I am outside your window. With a bus.
3. The Incredibles.
4. 13 Going on 30
In a lot of these the protagonists are mostly their own antagonist, so, bus.
5. National Treasure.
Ian, you beautiful devil. Bus.
6. Garden State
Zach Braff, confront your demons once and for all. Bus.