An ambiguous ending is an ending of a story (or movie) that leaves the reader guessing. There is no definite conclusion and the story could move one way or the other depending on the reader’s opinions.
I kind of like ambiguous endings. Yes, like most readers I want to know how the story ends. On occasion, I have come across a compelling story and when I get to the end, I’m left wondering, “What happened next?”
One story in particular comes to mind: “The Mist” by Stephen King. And, no, I’m not talking about the movie based on the short story. There was nothing ambiguous about THAT and I think it ruined the ending.
The main character left a notebook telling his story in a gas station. But we don’t know what exactly happened to him at that point, though we can speculate on two possible outcomes.
I think an ambiguous ending for that particular story worked well. It leaves the reader guessing.
I know there are some people who don’t like that sort of endings. And I understand completely. After all, we all want to know what happens in the end. I think it’s human nature.
So, do you love or hate ambiguous endings? And feel free to share stories and/or movies that had ambiguous endings that you either loved or hated.