The Happy Ending


The Happy Ending

Critics Consensus

No consensus yet.



Total Count: 6


Audience Score

User Ratings: 214
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Movie Info

Happy Ending was intended as a satire of the emptiness of suburban life. Jean Simmons (then the wife of producer/ director/ writer Richard Brooks) is bored silly by her 16-year marriage to John Forsythe. She jets off to the Bahamas and launches an affair with gigolo Bobby Darin. Then she...yes, we said Bobby Darin. Then she realizes that what she really lacks in life is a decent education, so she returns to her husband and enrolls in night school. This, of course, occurs only after she experiments with booze, drugs, and Bobby...yes, we said Bobby Darin.

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Critic Reviews for The Happy Ending

All Critics (6) | Top Critics (2)

  • A well-developed and acted and potentially significant 'woman's movie' unfortunately drowns in Brooks' over indulgences and over-writing.

    Apr 8, 2008 | Full Review…

    Variety Staff

    Top Critic
  • The Happy Ending is a kind of false Faces -- a movie that set out to expose the kitsch of Hollywood fantasy.

    May 9, 2005 | Rating: 1/5
  • Richard Brooks' The Happy Ending is an odd film snuggled somewhere between the romantic melodrama and the social problem films that came to define his career.

    Dec 28, 2018 | Rating: 8/10 | Full Review…
  • Simmons is excellent -- she earned an Oscar nomination, as did the song "What Are You Doing for the Rest of Your Life?" -- while Bobby Darin amuses as an Italian slickster.

    Jan 30, 2016 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…
  • Depressing melodrama about the trials and tribulations of a modern marriage.

    Mar 26, 2010 | Rating: C | Full Review…
  • Jean Simmons struggles valiantly but no avail; she's defeated by writer-director Brooks's dreary, overwritten screenplay.

    Apr 8, 2008 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for The Happy Ending

  • Nov 18, 2010
    Jean Simmons makes this compelling viewing. The backstory of the film is that director Richard Brooks, Simmons husband at the time, was concerned and aware of Jean's alcoholism and designed the picture not only as a showcase for her prestigious talent, rewared with an Oscar nomination, but hopefully a wakeup call for her. It didn't work immediately and eventually helped destroy their marriage but she was able to eventually conquer her demons and live sober until the end of her life. The film itself is a scattershot affair what with it's frequent flashbacks and fragmented nature but does have a beautiful score and excepting Bobby Darin very good supporting work. Shirley Jones is notable in particular in the smallish role of an old college chum of Jean's. The ending is beautifully done, simple and true.
    jay n Super Reviewer

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