Re: "M" Lorre is just amazing in that final sequence -- and while I suppose that hand reaching down isn't all that spectacular -- somehow the composition of that shot -- coming after his hysterical breakdown in front of the "court" -- and his bland reaction always sends very complicated shivers down my spine. But Ebab is right, it is not really a demise as I stated.
Max Cady...Played by Mitchum and De Niro in CAPE FEAR. Glad they died.
I was going to bring up Robert Mitchum in CAPE FEAR, too. He doesn't die. And that's what's satisfying. His worst fear is going back to prison. He wants Gregory Peck to kill him. When Peck holds off, deciding that prison would be a worse punishment, you can see in Mitchum's eyes that Peck is correct.
One of the odder 'Comeuppances' was visited upon a lawyer (who was a bit of a sleezebag, but not a true villain) in the first Jurrasic Park. He runs into a restroom to escape T-Rex and finds that is not ample cover. The collapse of the 'house of cards' out-building borders on the comical.
Spielberg must have been venting some recent lawyer experiences, or something.