Depending on whom you ask, Uncut Gems will be either described as the greatest movie of the year, or an obnoxious, panic-ridden montage best left for those able to take art house cinema.
Starring Adam Sandler, Kevin Garnett, and the Weeknd, the drama zooms in on the last days of a jewelry seller, an insatiable adrenaline junkie always on the lookout for something to destroy.
Let's skip to the best bits, shall we? Here's what you should know about the Uncut Gems ending scene.
So, what happens in the Uncut Gems ending scene?
The movie kicks off with a dazzlingly colorful, kaleidoscopic extreme closeup of the surface of a black opal, a rare gemstone predominantly mined in Ethiopia. This is the precious possession Howard Ratner (played by Adam Sandler) is pining for so relentlessly. Then, the montage cuts to another closeup, this time showing the much less glamorous insides of Howard's colon. As the filmmakers told The Wrap, this symbolizes the circle of life.
Proceed with caution, spoilers ahead!
The narrative kicks in with a full force once Howard receives the endlessly cherished gemstone, sent to him inside a half-rotten fish in a bid to avoid catching the attention of customs control. The black opal is hoped to help Howard pay back some of his creditors. This, needless to say, does not happen.
Instead — and this is only the first of many moments you'll find yourself shrieking — Howard lends the black opal to a special guest who shows up at random to his grotty jewelry store, Boston Celtics player Kevin Garnett (played by Kevin Garnett).
The raison d'etre behind the seemingly nonsensical decision? A long-term fan of the basketball player, Howard hopes the stone might bring luck at their next game, which he intends to bet on, Peter Travers reminds us in his review for the Rolling Stones.
The stone might bring luck, but not for Howard. The rest of the movie chronicles his seemingly unending demise and constant humiliation as creditors threaten to punch him senseless, his snobbish wife prepares for divorce, and he gets beaten up by The Weeknd after a fit of jealousy.
The Uncut Gems ending scene is just as chaotic as the rest of the movie.
Toward the second half of the movie, the stakes increase, and soon enough we are to realize that Howard's life is very much on the table.
Constantly chased by greedy financiers and self-defined headhunters, in his last moments we watch him cling onto the patchy screen of his television, praying that the game he betted on would end according to his predictions, get him money and earn him a few more days. That, like many other of Howard's ill-adjusted ambitions, does not take place.
The shooting of the Uncut Gems ending scene was no small feat.
"The star is doing the stunts and he's going to get killed out there, and they're going to actually kill him," said Keith Williams Richards, the actor playing Phil, one of Howard's creditors in a TIFF 2019 Q&A session.
"I'm lucky to be standing here right now in one piece," he added.
"It was scripted to happen off-camera [...] and then Eric had the bright idea to shove the gun out of Keith's hands, and it went right into his cheek and punctured it," explained Josh Safdie.
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