Definition of denouement in English:

denouement

(also dénouement)

noun

  • 1The final part of a play, film, or narrative in which the strands of the plot are drawn together and matters are explained or resolved.

    ‘the film's denouement was unsatisfying and ambiguous’
    • ‘Like so many loosely bound thrillers, the denouement doesn't add up and the final shoot-out is farcical.’
    • ‘The denouement of the final twist in the plot is so startling and funny that the laughter must surely have been heard above the traffic outside the theatre.’
    • ‘The stage was now set for the final denouement in a two-handed drama.’
    • ‘It is this moment of rupture which carries the denouement of the film into relatively unexplored territory in Australian landscape cinema.’
    • ‘As the film moves to its denouement, it reverts more to formula with airborne bang-whack-pow style fights between good guy and bad.’
    • ‘It combined the delicacy of ballet with the bombast of a Lloyd-Webber musical, and every move was executed like the denouement of a Shakespearean tragedy.’
    • ‘There's nothing like seeing two improbably beautiful people fall in love, fight, and reach a film's dénouement together.’
    • ‘There is much to admire in Shakespeare's ability to combine plots and subplots of such diversity and create a dénouement in which any number of knots are blithely unraveled.’
    • ‘To explore the intricacies of the plot further would give away the denouement and spoil any pleasure that might be culled from the evening.’
    • ‘The film opens with the denouement, the murder-suicide, and then recounts the events that preceded it.’
    • ‘The result is that the denouement of the film is nowhere near as hopeful or emotional as it should be, and the overall message is exposed as weak.’
    • ‘In the notes, you said the script was a little bit like getting a denouement of a film, rather like the third act all in one piece, and viewers have to learn about the characters as they go along.’
    • ‘The plays require neither plot structure nor plausible dénouement to produce the recurring fantasy of woman's life in the absence of men.’
    • ‘None of Wilder's leading characters, no matter how neat the final denouements of his films sometimes are, were ever anything but anti-heroes.’
    • ‘The poem doesn't reach a climax or any sense of denouement in this final installation.’
    • ‘As the novel reaches its denouement, the reader begins to see the astonishing mental strength of this woman.’
    • ‘Many critics complained about the prolonged denouement of the film, which is not fair because they seem to yield to reflex rather than judge by merit.’
    • ‘They borrowed their tropes, plots, and denouements from an American cultural tradition that included theories, artworks, and stories that linked nostalgia and extinction.’
    • ‘As the music built to a final denouement a bright city rose behind the dancers and they joyfully went to enter it.’
    • ‘As if to reinforce the point, the final denouement, which takes place on live TV, is staged off-screen.’
    finale, final scene, final act, last act, epilogue, coda, end, ending, finish, close
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1The outcome of a situation, when something is decided or made clear.
      ‘I waited by the eighteenth green to see the denouement’
      • ‘New generations would tell and retell the story of the Revolution itself, with different accounts of the rising action, climax, and dénouement, and with different heroes and villains.’
      • ‘It could well be the precipitating event for the final denouement in this extraordinary period of financial history.’
      • ‘Cassady's situation has the ironies of a contrived novelistic denouement.’
      • ‘Being grounded in the basics of law, the legal battle which started from the Paravur Municipal Court, had a successful denouement at the Supreme Court.’
      • ‘I've decided that I will share here with readers the entire progress of one applicant's exchange of correspondence with the agency in regards to a claim, the genesis and discussion of the matter, and the dénouement.’
      • ‘You think journalists are being more impatient with the outcome, waiting for denouement, than the public is?’
      • ‘When we believe our own storyline, as if it were a novel that will reach its climax and denouement in tidy fashion, we delude ourselves.’
      • ‘This also means that in the court of public opinion the tournament director stands totally vindicated by the way the championship has unfolded regardless of its remaining finals' denouements.’

Origin

Mid 18th century: French dénouement, from dénouer unknot.

Pronunciation:

denouement

/deɪˈnuːmɒ̃/