What Smile Director Parker Finn Loves About The Movie’s Ending, And The Possibility Of Smile 2

SPOILERS are ahead for Smile, now playing in theaters. 

When it gets to the final act of Smile, it feels as though we’ve gone through every scare and emotion with Sosie Bacon’s Rose. And yet, the Smile ending does not hold back. Contrary to our hopes that the evil entity haunting her will not get the last laugh, it sure does. And with that we know that the concept of Smile not only will continue to haunt us, but can live on. 

During CinemaBlend’s interview with Smile’s writer/director Parker Finn, the filmmaker shared his intentions behind the horror movie’s finale. In his words: 

I don't love it when the ending is tied up with a bow. I like messy endings that can deliver an emotional catharsis, but also be ambiguous and then potentially, pull the rug out from underneath you. I think the intention with the film was to tell a self-contained story. I think there could still be a lot of fun stuff to do with Smile, but if there was any story that was gonna continue, I'd wanna make sure that it's not a retread of what we already watched, that it's something new and that it would have more surprises in store for the audience.

It sounds like Smile 2 is not out of the question thanks to its chilling ending. In the final moments of the movie, Sosie Bacon’s character becomes consumed by the evil entity by setting herself on fire as Kyle Gallner’s Joel watches and inevitably inherits the same haunting next. Smile was the big box office success of the weekend, earning back its budget and more so. When we asked Gallner his own feelings on the conclusion of the horror film, he said this: 

I'm hoping it's a one-two punch with Rose and then Joel being like, you know… I love that punch. I hope it's a gut punch for everybody.

Smile has one of those great horror endings that certainly underlines the message of the movie and leaves one a bit scared of smiles once walking out. But it also leaves the door open for more of the story to be explored. While Rose and Joel learned a lot about the evil entity that creates these maniacal smiles before she dies, it still feels like there could be more to the lore of Smile’s terrifying villain, a sequel could delve into. 

In addition to its commercial success, the movie got a thumbs up from critics overall, including through CinemaBlend’s own Smile review. The movie was even praised by legendary horror author Stephen King, who gave a shout out to Sosie Bacon’s performance. Stay tuned for more exclusive coverage about this spooky season’s upcoming horror movies

Sarah El-Mahmoud
Staff Writer

Sarah El-Mahmoud has been with CinemaBlend since 2018 after graduating from Cal State Fullerton with a degree in Journalism. In college, she was the Managing Editor of the award-winning college paper, The Daily Titan, where she specialized in writing/editing long-form features, profiles and arts & entertainment coverage, including her first run-in with movie reporting, with a phone interview with Guillermo del Toro for Best Picture winner, The Shape of Water. Now she's into covering YA television and movies, and plenty of horror. Word webslinger. All her writing should be read in Sarah Connor’s Terminator 2 voice over.