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I was thinking of the ending of An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge, and was thinking of ways it could be modernized, and suddenly the ending of Brazil popped into my head.

Now, I haven't seen Brazil in a long time, so all the details are very hazy, but it seemed that this could be a definite nod, from what I could remember. Is there anything in the scene that would specifically indicate that the overall similarity is more than just coincidence?

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up vote 9 down vote accepted

For those of you unfamiliar with An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge (spoiler ahead) - this is a terrific story about a Civil War soldier who is sentenced to hang, but escapes his bonds and enjoys a somewhat supernatural escapade, before it is revealed that the whole event was, in fact, all in his head and took place as the noose was tightening. A downbeat and interesting twist ending.

That said, I agree that Brazil does seem to be an homage to this form of story ending, and a little further digging turned up this excellent page on, which delves into the same question.

Essentially, the essay cites several other films that utilize the same ending, including: Carnival of Souls; Jacob's Ladder; Donnie Darko and Brazil. I would also include The Descent (depending in which continent you saw it).

I don't believe there is anything specifically in the scene to link Brazil to the book, other than the plot device itself.

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