- Meg Ryan considers the ending of her romantic comedy What Happens Later as “perfect.”
- The film received negative reviews, with a 55% rating on the Tomatometer and a 31% audience score.
- Co-star David Duchovny hopes the film’s ambiguous ending will generate discussion among viewers.
Warning! The following contains spoilers for What Happens Later
In her latest romantic comedy, What Happens Later, Meg Ryan serves as director, co-writer, and star. Ryan describes the film’s conclusion as “perfect,” even though it doesn’t provide a typical happy ending. In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Ryan explains, “The last music cue in the score is called ‘Bye for Now’. I think these two people screw it up in perpetuity. The ending is perfect. I don’t think it’s unsatisfying either. There’s something about who they are.”
However, the movie has not been well-received by critics or audiences, despite Ryan’s belief that the ending is not unsatisfying. The film’s ratings suggest that it didn’t resonate with fans, possibly due to the ambiguous ending. Co-star David Duchovny commented in the same interview, “Hopefully, it’s something that people will discuss. Some will want us to be together, some will not.”
The box office performance of What Happens Later reflects the lack of enthusiasm from viewers. The film made only $1.6 million during its U.S. debut, landing it at the No. 9 spot at the domestic box office. Ryan’s previous romantic comedies like When Harry Met Sally, Sleepless in Seattle, and You’ve Got Mail were all successful largely because of their satisfying resolutions.
While Casablanca and The Way We Were are examples of love stories where the main characters don’t end up together and still leave a lasting impact, What Happens Later does not seem to have achieved this level of classic status. In Ryan’s defense, the title of her new film is quite literally What Happens Later, implying that the ambiguity is intentional.
What Happens Later is currently playing in theaters, and its trailer can be accessed online.