Ever since superhero movies made the post-credits “Easter Egg” scene popular and almost a prerequisite, it’s become easier to overlook the simple art of the end credit sequence itself. Some films have gone above and beyond, so you are at least entertained while you discover who the caterer was. Here are some of the best examples of sequences worth forgoing that restroom rush for.
10. THE CANNONBALL RUN (1981)
One of the most classic examples of using the end credits to showcase bloopers was director Hal Needham’s “Smokey and the Bandit.” But Hal gave the concept a serious all-star revamp when he reteamed with Burt Reynolds for “Cannonball Run.” Not only do you have Burt slapping the shit out of Dom DeLuise, you get legends like Dean Martin, Roger Moore and Sammy Davis, Jr. unable to keep it together — and that’s gold.
9. SPEED RACER (2008)
The Wachowski siblings' take on the cult classic anime series has gone down in history as a failed experiment, but there’s no denying the movie’s surreal Technicolor barrage left an impression. The end credits are some kind of sugar-and-meth-fueled hallucination featuring swirling colors and chimps set to a funked-up, hip-hop version of the Speed Racer theme. You didn’t know what the hell was going on, but you kept watching …
8. THERE’S SOMETHING ABOUT MARY (1998)
When you have a bunch of people making a movie together over the course of a few months, they are bound to get a little punchy. Leave it to the Farrelly Brothers to take that on-set goofiness and turn it into the theme for their end credits. The movie ends with a montage of the entire cast and crew lip-synching and dancing along to “Build Me Up Buttercup” by The Foundations (yes, even Brett Favre).
7. WALL-E (2008)
Pixar is known for dotting the “i’s” and crossing the “t’s” on all of their movies, creating some great end credit sequences (check out “Ratatouille” and “The Incredibles,” as well), but “Wall-E” was something special even by their standards. Not only does it continue the story (mankind repairing Earth’s environment), it does so with animation showing human artistic evolution from cave paintings to hieroglyphics to Impressionism, all set to Peter Gabriel’s “Down to Earth.” Amazing.
6. GHOSTBUSTERS (1986)
Kicked off with Ernie Hudson’s classic “I love this town!”, the “Ghostbusters” end credits show the aftermath of their final battle with Gozer the Gozerian, as the gang soak up the adulation of grateful New Yorkers (who were all extras happy to wave and shake hands with Bill Murray and Sigourney Weaver — no acting required). It’s a perfect party note to end on — Venkman and Dana’s VJ Day-like kiss, Ray lighting up a victory cig — even if it does contain a note of sadness (no one, it seems, wants to interview Louis Tully).
5. CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE FIRST AVENGER (2011)
As we mentioned earlier, the Marvel Comics movies are usually all about the post-credit scene. And while Cap does end with an extended teaser for “The Avengers,” what’s more impressive are the credits done in the style of World War II propaganda posters (Uncle Sam wants you … IN 3D!). The bombastic score and the stars and stripes are the perfect coda for the All-American Superhero, and it gives you something cool to look at while you wait for the post-credit scene.
4. HOT TUB TIME MACHINE (2010)
It’s one of those closing segments that elevates a movie from “awesome” to “legendary.” We’ve already been treated to some of the subtle changes Lou (Rob Corddry) made to the future when he decided to stay behind in 1986, but the moneyshot (as it were) was yet to come. The end credits feature a shot-for-shot remake of the Mötley Crüe video for “Home Sweet Home,” only this time featuring Lou as the frontman for the rechristened Motley Lue. So much awesome.
3. THIS IS SPINAL TAP (1984)
When you have a movie as monumentally funny as "Spinal Tap," you can’t contain it all in between opening and closing credits. So, while the names of cast and crew scroll by, the band keeps on playing. There are more funny lines during these throwaway bits than most alleged comedies have in their entire running time: “This is my exact inner structure, done in a T-shirt.” “So when you’re playing you feel like a preserved moose onstage?” “He was the patron saint of quality footwear.”
2. THE HANGOVER (2009)
Just a great payoff, plain and simple. Throughout the entire movie, the main characters have been trying to piece together what, exactly, they did during one wild night in Vegas. All questions are answered as the credits roll and we are presented with a slideshow of every despicable act the Wolfpack committed. From self-dental-surgery to elevator fellatio, it’s all there in glorious NSFW detail.
Next: 11 of the Coolest Movie Opening Credits
1. POLICE STORY (1985)
Oh, what’s that? Your cast blew the occasional line with giggle fits? You all coordinated a dance routine? That’s adorable. Jackie Chan’s end credit blooper reel is a collection of all the times HE NEARLY DIED. “Police Story” ends with a montage of stunt rehearsals, and stunt failures — with stuntmen being carried, unconscious, off set, and Jackie himself needing to be revived more than once. It ends with his famous slide down a pole covered in lightbulbs, a stunt that nearly electrocuted him. Fun!