The “cliffhanger” is one of those beautiful terms of fiction whose meaning was initially literal.
The early days of movies continued in that tradition with serials of their own, 12 or 14-part films that were released one week at a time.
A cliffhanger is sometimes the perfect way to end a movie — like in these ten excellent examples.
Supposedly, the word dates back to the 1870s, when a serialized novel novel by Thomas Hardy ended one of its chapters with its hero hanging off a cliff.
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