Brow Beat

A Breakdown of All the Nifty Tricks and Happy Accidents That Made Se7en’s Ending So Haunting

David Fincher’s Se7en is both masterfully crafted and also very difficult to watch, and the ending plays no small part in this. In this “Art of the Scene” video, CineFix recounts all of the cinematic tricks and twists of fate that saved the scene from being decidedly less devastating: If it weren’t for a few happy accidents, it could have instead consisted of Al Pacino looking on as Sylvester Stallone found his dog’s severed head in the box, courtesy of Val Kilmer. Not kidding.

These videos are always good at breaking down all of the seemingly small choices that can make a set piece land in a big way—see also CineFix’s videos about the Psycho shower scene, Mission: Impossible’s wirework heist scene, Raiders of the Lost Ark’s boulder chase scene, and Saving Private Ryan’s Omaha beach scene—but this one does an especially good job of showing how much greatness can also just come down to chance.