Tuesday, April 3, 2012

My Top 12 Favorite Opening Credit Sequences

     It may seem like something very small but I absolutely love opening credits. This is the moment when a movie can suck you into what kind of world or environment the film has to offer. Or it can establish the mood of the film, how it’s going to make you feel. Whether it’s funny, scary, artsy or elaborate, it gets you started in just the right mind set for how to receive a film. Sometimes the simple use of a great musical score played over credits is enough to get me invested in a film. I love it when there’s something creative, something animated or just something very atmospheric, they just get me so hyped up for a film. It wasn't an easy list to make because there are so many great ones, but here are my personal top 12 favorite opening credits that hype me up the most.     

#12 The Opening credits to “Ed Wood” (1994)

Now here’s a really artsy opening. Real life director Ed Wood made some of the cheapest horror movies of all time and the opening to Tim Burtons biopic titled “Ed Wood” is very crafty in celebrating his films in every possible way. We begin with a creepy house in the middle of a stormy night, there’s lots of lightning, the cast names are carved in cheep looking grave stones, we get a stop motion octopus, flying saucers and some excellent background music, it’s one of Tim Burtons best openings.    

#11 The Opening credits to “Monty Python and the Holy Grail” (1974) 
This is one of my favorite funny credit openings, complete with faulty subtitles, announcements of crew people getting sacked and people deciding to change the style of the credits at last second. It’s just the perfect way get you in the right mood for a comedy.   

#10 The Opening credits to “Bedknobs and Broomsticks” (1971)

 Walt Disney certainly had a talent for beginning his films in a timeless fashion and the best by far would have to be the opening to this film. The artistry on display in this opening is phenomenal, it really sparks your imagination in regards as to what the film will be about and the background music really gets you hipped up.

#9 The Opening credits to “Babe” (1995) 
This is such a charming little opening, we start with the title of the film appearing on the cover of a book, classic. Then the soft, sweet music plays as the camera travels down this long room full of objects and pictures that magicaly come to life. It’s almost reminiscent of the opening to “The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh” in Christopher Robin’s bed room. It’s just a very soft and slightly whimsical opening that’s short and sweet. 

#8 The Opening credits to “Rat Race” (2001) 
Of all the opening credits I’ve seen for a comedy, this one is my personal favorite. I love how we're introduced to the cast and all these color full characters by first seeing them in these funny animated forms, just acting like themselves and playing around with all the credits and with Baha Men’s rendition of the song “Rat Race” playing in the background, your all set for some comedy.    

#7 The Opening credits to “Spider-Man 3” (2007) 
The Opening credits for the Spider-Man movies just got better and better with each film and then struck gold with the third film. There are just so many cool things to look at, I wonder if anyone even notices the credits? We have flashback footage from the first two movies and all kinds of awesome effects going on in this environment, most of the visuals hint at the different powers seen from all the different characters in the film, it’s just awesome.   

#6 The Opening credits to “Wild Wild West” (1999) 
I just love the whole art style for this opening, the different colors, film footage, character pictures and awesome musical score. It shows you who the characters are, the different vehicles, weapons, it’s just a really fun opening and was always my favorite part of the film.

#5 The Opening credits to “Batman Mask of the Phantasm” (1993) 
It was definitely a coin toss between this and the opening credit sequence to Tim Burtons “Batman” but I think this one’s a little cooler. First of all, it’s awesome to look at, we travel through a beautifully animated CG Gotham City and boasting it is a stellar score from Shirley Walker. I just get goose bumps every time I hear it and it puts you perfectly in the right mood for a great Batman flick.    

#4 The Opening credits to “Star Trek First Contact” (1996) 
The Star Trek movies have a great tradition begin their films on a high note and "Star Trek First Contact" just sores with this beautiful opening credit sequence. This is just the perfect example of how a breath taking musical score can submerse you into a film, and I love the way the credits appear on screen. Jerry Goldsmith truly out did himself with this musical score and it really allowed the munitions to show case there talents in drawing the audience into the experience.  

#3 The Opening credits to “Edward Scissorhands” (1990) 
You can always count on a great opening credit sequence from Tim Burton and my favorite from his movies would definitely have to be the opening to this film. The look is so elaborate, with odd shapes and figures in this crazy castle and laboratory. It’s all mixed with Danny Elfmans unforgettable score which is just so haunting and beautiful, this is an opening that really draws you into this crazy yet brilliantly crafted world from Tim Burton and it leaves me with goose bumps every time. 

#2 The Opening credits to “Jason and the Argonauts” (2000) 
Admittedly, this is a very short opening but it’s just so beautifully done and by the standards of a two part TV movie, it’s just sensational. It starts nice a quiet, then the title emerges and it’s just epic, the music is stunning and as the credits continue we get cool visuals of mythological creatures ranging from centaurs to giant scorpions. I’m sure this film is largely un-known to a lot of people and for obvious reasons but if it ever shows up on TV again, treat yourself to this stellar opening sequence and see what I’m talking about.  

#1 The Opening credits to “Casino Royale” (2006) 
You knew number one had to be from a James Bond movie, his films have a tradition of begining with an awesome opening credit sequence and this one is the best by far. The visual effects are awesome and sense there’s a lot of poker and gamboling in this film, we get this really artistic poker themed art style to go with all the visuals and that song “You Know my Name” hypes the hell out of me every time I hear it. There’s just no question about it, the opening credits to “Casino Royale” is the best sequences to start a Bond film and it’s my favorite opening credit sequence of all time.  
     The End  

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