50 brilliant movie opening credits sequences

Odd List Jenny Morrill Alex Carter 27 Jun 2014 - 06:49

From a range of eras and genres, here's Jenny and Alex's light-hearted pick of 50 great opening title sequences from the movies...

We don’t go to the cinema much, because we hate people. We also don’t go because there’s always the risk of accidentally going to see the wrong film. It's not helped by the fact that there's no way of telling until it’s too late, because there are no bloody opening credits on lots of modern films. And by the time you do realise, you’ve eaten all your popcorn and you can’t be bothered to move.

The movies on this list won’t give you that problem. These opening credits are perfect scene setters for the movies that follow, so you won’t have to worry about awkward popcorn wasting moments. It's not a top 50, rather a selection of 50 interesting credits sequences, some chosen by Jenny and some by Alex. So here we go...

1984 (1984)

I’m going to assume everyone reading this knows the basic plot of 1984. Polite society demands that you do.

We begin the opening credits as the daily two minutes’ hate is finishing, leading into the broadcast of the national anthem - Oceania, ‘Tis For Thee. The national anthem is an uplifting tune, full of optimism, yet you feel all hope for humanity drain out of you as you hear it. The credits roll over an image of Big Brother that fills the screen, cutting back to the near hysterical frenzy that his picture evokes in the brainwashed crowd, leading to an unsettling feeling that remains throughout the film. (JM)

Did you know: Roger Deakins was responsible for the beautifully lit, bleached-out cinematography. Director Michael Radford had originally approached Sean Connery for the role of O'Brien, but the part ultimately went to Richard Burton.

The Adventures Of Tintin (2011)

There’s something to be said about a character that can be identified solely by the silhouette of his hair. Especially when he’s running around through a montage of everything you could think of from the 1940s. I’m glad they didn’t make him all modern and gritty by giving him an ex-wife and an alcohol problem. (AC)

Did you know: this was Steven Spielberg's first 3D movie, and composer John Williams' first animated film.

Airheads (1994)

No one under the age of 20 will have any idea what’s going on in these credits. Reels of tape! Boom boxes! Compact discs! Stop motion animation! Mixing desks! Real instruments! If there’s one thing I like it’s excluding young people from society, although ironically this time it’s being done through the medium of rock ‘n’ roll. I feel old now, I need a Solpadine. (AC)

Did you know: Airheads was the last film to use the old 20th Century Fox logo from the 80s. A new CGI logo made its debut in Fox's next film, The Scout.

Alien (1979)

The pieces of the title slowly come together with an indescribable menace. I’m not entirely sure how five letters can be scary, but with that animation over one of Jerry Goldsmith’s finest scores, they damn well are. No wonder Prometheus tried the same trick. (AC)

Did you know: This title sequence was designed by Richard Greenberg, who'd previously created the opening titles for Superman (1978).

Amelie (2001)

This sweet, quirky title sequence shows Audrey Tautou's introverted heroine as a child. A girl with overprotective parents, and consequently no friends, Amelie is introduced to us via a montage of the different ways her childhood self fills her time. It's through this montage that we catch a glimpse of her imagination at work, giving us an idea of what the grown-up Amelie will be like as a character. (JM)

Did you know: Amelie was originally written specifically for actress Emily Watson. She was replaced by Audrey Tautou when a mixture of conflicting schedules and a poor grasp of French ruled Watson out.

Back To The Future (1985)

Few credits scenes set up so much with so little as this. A long pan around Doc Brown’s garage-cum-lab tells you everything you need to know about the upcoming two hours. Doc Brown is a mad scientist preoccupied by time, gadgets, pining for a lost relevance. Also he’s stolen a load of plutonium which has made him a few enemies. Not bad for an almost wordless minute. (AC)

Did you know: The opening sequence contains references to The Time Machine (1960) and Harold Lloyd's Safety Last! (1923) - the latter referenced again when Doc Brown hangs off the clock tower in 1955.

Barbarella (1968)

Hey, this is nice. Swinging 60s soundtrack, kitsch sci-fi decor. Oh look, it’s zero-g, guess she’s in space. That’s a nice wire effect. Okay, so she’s slipping into something more comfortable, that’s cool, I guess it’s going to be a bit light hearted and… oh my. Ahem.

I need another Solpadine. (AC)

Did you know: In the (probably NSFW) sequence above, Jane Fonda isn't suspended in mid-air, but actually lying on a sheet of glass. You can see the reflection in one or two shots.

Twilight: Breaking Dawn Part 2 (2012)

Say what you like about The Twilight Saga (and, er, many have), but you can't knock the movies’ opening credits when it comes to setting the mood. This is particularly true for the final film in the series, as it brings together elements from all the previous films to make one conclusive whole. A medley of all the previous Twilight scores serve as a musical recap, akin to saying 'Previously on The Twilight Saga...' Visually, the credits show various parts of picturesque landscapes turning to ice, alluding to Bella’s transformation into a vampire. And also to the fact that it’s pretty cold in Washington. Probably. (JM)

Did you know: This was the only Twilight movie to feature a full opening credits sequence.

Bridget Jones’ Diary (2001)

As Celine Dion’s All By Myself plays, Bridget sits alone on her sofa, a drunken, chain smoking lady tramp in pyjamas. After checking her answerphone and confirming that, yet again, she has no messages, Bridget downs half a pint of red wine in one go, and begins to tearfully lip synch to Ms Dion. This culminates in a full on Grammy worthy performance, using a rolled up magazine as a microphone.

We’ve all been in Bridget’s position at some point. And if you’ve never been in that position, know that I'm glaring at you right now. (JM)

Did you know: Originally released by Eric Carmen in 1975, All By Myself has been covered numerous times by artists including Tom Jones, Eartha Kitt, Frank Sinatra and the irrepressible John Barrowman. Eddie Murphy also covered it in Shrek 2.

Caligula (1979)

Gore Vidal’s controversial depiction of the Roman Emperor’s descent into madness begins with a simple yet effective visual - Caligula immortalised in a Roman coin. Slowly, the likeness begins to cry tears of blood, accompanied by Prokofiev’s Romeo And Juliet. Ominous, passionate, and a bit insane. (JM)

Did you know: Caligula was banned in Russia until 1993, and is still banned in Belarus.

Clerks (1994)

Your life sucks. You hate your job, and your boss has just phoned to guilt trip you into working on your day off. Do you:

A) Whine like a bitch
B) Try to argue with your boss but ultimately fail
C) Go to work in a huff and open the shop, all the while cursing your sham of a life

If you answered D) All of the above, congratulations! You are Dante, star of one of the best loved cult films of a generation. We are proud to watch you performing your morning drudgery and then having to stink of shoe polish for the rest of the day.

The beauty of these credits lies in how ordinary they are. The collection of Dante’s mundane morning chores, such as attempting to make coffee with no clean cups, putting on his boots, unlocking the shop and putting out the morning papers, perfectly show the start of what is going to be a very average day in his life. You might think there’s a twist and that the day will contain explosions and peril, but no. Mostly it’s just Dante being slightly annoyed in the shop. These credits are a double bluff because they show the beginning of an average day which just goes on to be an average day; they don’t feel the need to build up suspense. (JM)

Did you know: Kevin Smith shot Clerks for less than $30,000 at the store he used to work at.

Days Of Thunder (1990)

The opening synth arpeggios. The chorus on the bass. The electric pianos. The sheer testosterone pouring out of every pixel. Even if it was made in 1990, I dare you to find a more 80s opening than this. (AC)

Did you know: The production of Days Of Thunder was so chaotic that pages of the script were often being made on the spot during filming. Tom Cruise suffered a minor car accident because he was trying to read his lines from cue cards on the dashboard while driving around the track.

Disney’s Robin Hood (1973)

We fought over which Disney credits to include in this list. Alex argued in favour of this, while I lobbied for The Lion King. However, his argument was so eloquent and persuasive that I had to relent :

“But look (hic) – small animals! That's so British! And (hic) another thing....”

I never did get to find out what the other thing was, since Alex had drunk quite a lot of whiskey by this point. I think he might have started mumbling about Pot Noodles.

Drunken rambling aside, these credits are very British, because Britishness means not getting too carried away with things. As such, we have a simple, cheerful whistling tune playing over the characters being introduced one by one. The characters aren’t punching things (men) or standing there in their bras (women), they’re just cooking knitting, or going for a nice walk. Perfect. (JM)

Did you know: To save money, animators referenced scenes from earlier Disney films: Snow White, The Jungle Book and The Aristocats.

Drop Dead Fred (1991)

These credits make me want to do naughty things. They make me want to smear dog poo on the furniture and write 'Mother sucks' on the carpet. A series of childish crayon scribbles depict iconic things from the film, such as vodka and pants pie (which explodes all over Elizabeth’s bullying mother). The movie’s antagonist, smarmy love rat Charles, is drawn with devil horns and missing teeth. The credits show other childishly anarchic things like assaulting someone with a pair of stinking socks, and attempting to play a piano with a hammer.

With their deceptively simple, childlike animation style, these credits look like even I, hopeless artist that I am, could have made them, and that is part of their charm. (JM)

Did you know: Robin Williams was offered the role of Fred, while Tim Burton was given the chance to direct. Both turned the film down.

Dr. Strangelove (1964)

Much like the movie itself, the credits here satirise the newsreels of the day with their stock footage of bombers calmly going about their business. In fact, if it weren’t for the music then you’d easily think this was just a set of stock footage. But the serene music is creepy by its inappropriateness, along with the idiosyncratic credits themselves.

Watching these credits is like being stuck in a lift during a nuclear war, reading lovely hand written notes on a paper aeroplane, written by a child with no sense of scale whatsoever. It’s all rather soothing. (AC)

Did you know: The opening titles were designed by Pablo Ferro. The hand-written style was originally intended as a thumbnail sketch by Ferro, but Kubrick liked it so much that he insisted it be used in the finished picture. Ferro's other film titles include Bullitt, Beetlejuice, The Thomas Crowne Affair and To Live And Die In LA.

Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind (2004)

You would be forgiven for not thinking Eternal Sunshine has opening credits at all, coming as they do 17 minutes into the film. However, by using the audience expectation that the credits always come first, we can identify this as being chronologically the first scene. It is also subversive, as despite being chronologically the first, it also takes place after the bulk of the story. Don’t worry, this does make sense when you see the full film. (AC)

Did you know: Nic Cage was in the running for the lead role before Jim Carrey stepped in.

Feed (2005)

Cherish by The Association plays happily on the car stereo, while our hero rolls along to the drive thru in his car, looking very much like he doesn’t have a care in the world. Perhaps he’s daydreaming about the woman he loves? The background song would certainly suggest that. Wait, how many burgers is he buying? 20? Maybe he’s very hungry. And what’s happened to the lovely music? Oh, there it is again, and there goes our hero, taking lunch to his beloved. The house looks to be in disrepair; perhaps his girlfriend is ill. Aww, that’s nice, he’s taking lunch to his ill, bedridden girlfriend, I...oh. (JM)

Did you know: Directed by Brett Leonard, whose previous films included the cyber thrillers Virtuosity and The Lawnmower Man.

Gattaca (1997)

Falling, out of focus objects might not sound the most interesting sequence, but Gattaca's opening slowly builds, adding mystery before revealing the source: these are skin flakes and hairs. Whoever is doing this really wants to scrub something away, and just what’s really contained in all that human detritus will become the overriding theme of the film. It’s remarkably effective. (AC)

Did you know: Gattaca's opening titles were designed by Michael Riley, who also created the titles for Kung Fu Panda.

The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo (2011)

David Fincher films tend to have excellent opening credits sequences (see also: Panic Room). In the case of The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, they're gritty, futuristic, and visually spectacular. If pushed to describe them in one sentence, I'd say 'A Bjork video crossed with the Castrol GTX advert from the 80s'. (JM)

Did you know: Director David Fincher intended the opening sequence to be the "personal nightmare" of character Lisbeth Salander.

Godzilla (2014)

Now this is most unusual, a modern blockbuster not only with a credit sequence, but a credit sequence with a unique design that actually moves the narrative forward. There are nuclear weapons, and something very secret has happened, and if you’re very quick you might just catch a glimpse. Tantalisation and interactivity are just two of the things any teenage boy hopes for in the back row of a cinema, but I bet none of them thought it would be delivered quite this way. (AC)

Did you know: According to director Gareth Edwards, the title sequence for Godzilla was envisioned as a prologue. When it was deemed too much for the start of the film, it was reinvisioned as the title sequence, with the idea of the redacted text inspired by the opening of Oliver Stone's film, JFK.

Good Burger (1997)

The prospect of watching Good Burger should fill any sane human being with abject terror. However, might I suggest at least watching the opening credits? The title occurs over a rather bizarre animation of the world’s most indecisive burger which is about the most 90s thing you’ll ever see. Not interesting? Okay, well what is interesting is that the credits themselves take place over a scene where Kenan (or is it Kel? Meh, no one cares) showers with his clothes on singing utter gibberish, followed by him dragging some poor girl through the road, banging her head violently on the concrete as she goes. Unwise, unintelligible and painful are the best descriptors for this film you could get. Thanks credits! (AC)

Did you know: Good Burger's premise originated from a brief sketch of the same name from the Nickelodeon comedy series, All That.

The Good, The Bad And The Ugly (1966)

Few scores so perfectly sum up an entire genre, but I dare you to try imagining a western without whistling this theme. This synergises perfectly with the credits themselves, that look like they could have been painted on the side of a stagecoach, and then covered with the gunshot-liberated blood of your enemies. Failing that, you could always just mime along with the gun noises, although I tried doing that in Tesco once and people give you funny looks if you try to do that and you’re over the age of five. (AC)

Did you know: The film's titles were created by the Italian artist and designer, Iginio Lardani, who created the opening sequences for all three Dollars films. He made most of them from his house in Rome.

The Graduate (1967)

Dustin Hoffman's bleak, staring, motionless ride on an airport travelator is the perfect accompaniment to Simon and Garfunkel's The Sound Of Silence. I am bored with the world. Move along, nothing left to see here. (JM)

Did you know: Mike Nichols became the first movie director to be paid a flat salary of $1m for The Graduate.

Grease (1978)

Grease's opening reminds me of an animated version of Viz, only without all the dirty jokes. It takes time to introduce every single character with a little insightful vignette, all to Frankie Valli’s Grease. Despite the surprisingly dated 70s animation, this holds up by the way it so perfectly sets the scene - it’s the 50s and we love it, we just want to take the piss ever so slightly. (AC)

Did you know: The opening credits to Grease were created by animator John Wilson, whose other work included The Lady And The Tramp.

Halloween (1978)

Imagine watching this opening in a movie theatre. The titles begin, telling you through the medium of panicky music that you really should get the hell out of there. And in between each credit there is that endless blackness, punctuated only by that godawful pumpkin. Look, he’s laughing at you. By the time the first scene begins, a part of you has become convinced that the movie is actually coming to kill you in real life. Maybe you should have just gone to Wimpy instead. (JM)

Did you know: John Carpenter's unforgettable title music is in 5/4 time, an unusual signature his father taught him. The music's unfamiliar rhythm is used specifically, Carpenter said, because its cyclical natures unnerves the viewer: "You don't know where it begins or ends..."

Disqus - noscript

Alan Partridge has a better description of "The spy who loved me" but good effort.

Missing
are: Pulp Fiction, Dawn Of The Dead '04, Skyfall/
Casino Royale, Catch Me
If You Can, Kiki’s Delivery
Service, Goodfellas (I Think That One Only Shows The Title, But It’s A
Favourite Of Mine), Waitress, 12 Monkeys, The Big Easy, Dirty Dancing, In The
Name Of The Father

I really love the opening of Alien 3 - the Fox Fanfare holding that last note and going into Goldenthal's great score - then the credits intercut with snippets of prologue info.

Those are some great ones there too. In our defence, we tried to limit ourselves to one per director/series. In fact we very nearly put Pulp Fiction in there anyway, and it was a toss up between Skyfall and The Spy Who Loved Me.

I thought the credits sequence for Godzilla 2014 was indistinguishable from the one used in Godzilla 1998. It was an alright sequence but certainly not unique or something that stood out. I wouldn't have placed it on this list.

It seems a little "band-wagon-ny" to rave about the opening credits sequence of Skyfall when there's 50 years of previous Bond films to consider, but to me it's a work of art.

The Spy Who Loved Me is actually my favourite Bond film, but Skyfall's opening credits are, IMHO, the best of the series.

And, yes, Toshiro is on the money with Catch Me if You Can, too.

Great article, mind.

I'm astonished that Holy Grail wasn't included in this list. Yes, Life of Brian has some great visuals, but the inventiveness of the Holy Grail credit sequence, made when the money had run out with nothing but stock music and text, is phenomenal. If you have a friend who has never seen this film before (and if they haven't, why are they your friend?), show them the titles and watch them get the joke then lean forward to catch every dodgy moose-related credit.

I will always hear Alan in my head whenever I see that film. "Glang, glangalang-alang-alang..." etc. "Ooh, bit of bush!"

What no Batman (1989)?

The opening credits to Watchmen was Paul Greengrass's idea, not Zack Snyder's. So Greengrass deserves the A.

Totally agree on Godzilla - best part of an otherwise disappointing movie. Watchmen's opening credits always gives me goosebumps. Se7en, Shaun of the Dead are also brilliant. I'd also say World War Z's opening was great too - a little bit of prologue mixed with Muse's doom laden piano.

My favourite of all is probably Zack Snyder's Dawn of the Dead. The montage footage of the pandemics and riots and religious cults are awesome enough on their own but Johnny Cash's "When the Man Comes Around" was the perfect song choice as well.

"And behold! A Pale Horse. And his name that sat on him was Death. And Hell followed with him."

Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom surely must be considered as up there? It's such a brilliantly coreographed musical number that is funny, a bit daft and really engaging and the first shot of Indy entering the club and acknowledging David Yip is great.

The Legend of Hell House also has a fantastically ominous opening sequence and Death Line is so sleazy and bombastic it's like Pete Walker directing Carry on Cannibal.

YES! Utterly terrifying. Shivers down the spine every time. I love it when movies mess with the logos.

Recently I liked the little flourish at the end of the fanfare in Days of Future Past.

Oh, so many to choose from...

I think among my favourites that are missing from this list are Monty Python and the Holy Grail, Austin Powers, Napolean Dynamite, Juno and Scott Pilgrim vs The World.

I'm still waiting for a Spielberg-directed musical.

On the Buses! Genuis! Why we love DoG. But like another poster said Dawn of the Dead '04 deserves a mention as does Kellly Heroes.

And The Wild Bunch plus McKenna's Gold to add to TGTBATU.

All this mention of Solpadeine has totally ruined my attempts to ween myself of my low-level middle-class addiction.

Ummmmm... The Shining?

"Antidote........for the poison you just drank!"

And if you ever get to see GODZILLA:FINAL WARS you will see exactly where he nicked it from!

I always liked JACKIE BROWN. Nothing fancy but focusing on the charachter who is going to drive the story. Use of Bobby Womack's "Across a 110th Street" brought that song to a whole new audience too....

I guess they're similar, though I remember Final Wars using more footage from previous films showing a history of Godzilla rather than just the same old stock footage of nuclear bombs used in 1998.

Where Eagles Dare - the opening, with the Winter camouflaged Fokker Triplane night-flying over the Alps, thrilled me to bits as a kid in the cinema.
My brother lent me his copy of the DVD recently and I was just as buzzed this time around.
It's just an All-time Classic!

The original The Italian Job is one of my favourite intros.

Maria Conchita Alonso wasn't in Predator. I think what you meant to say was "appeared in the Predator franchise".

Where is Star Wars, Prometheus, Batman (1989) and The Incredible Hulk (aka how to give a origin story without spending a complete movie about it) to name a few on this list?
Also, I didn't really like the Tintin opening sequence. It would be so much better with the animated series theme.

I was furious not to see 2003's HULK. FOR SHAME!!!!!!

erm...Star Wars anyone ?

Really nice article. Watchmen is one of my favourite intro.... In saying that, the opening credits to 'The Conversation' with Gene Hackmen or 'Sin City' should be there. They both send shivers down my spine (In antisipation) but for different reasons. Especially 'The conversation'. Never gets enough credit.

A fun article. I'd love it DOG if you did one on TV series.

Great article, got me thinking and suddenly I remembered

Rita, Sue and Bob Too!

Star Wars doesn't have an opening credits sequence so I can see why it was left off the list.

Fun list and gets you thinking. I'll add Spike Lee's "Do the Right Thing" with a mesmerizing Rose Perez hip hop dance to the credits.

I love On The Buses aswell :)

Tripods!

Fight Club and Casino are sorely missing! :)

Junkers Ju-52 actually but as you say brilliant opening.

UFO. Best. Intro. Ever.

When I saw this article title I immediately thought of the opening sequence of Waterworld. Might not count as it's more of a pre-credits sequence, but the pan in to the Universal globe slowly filling with water really tells you everything you need to know about the world the film is set in.

Not a popular film, but one of my personal favourites. Along with The Postman. *ducks*

I would have added Blue Velvet's opening sequence. An odd choice perhaps? But I remember watching that film for the first time and being struck by the opening's visuals and Angelo Badalamenti's haunting score. The opening, in my opinion, sets the tone for the rest of the film flawlessly.

Yes, I immediately thought of Watchmen when I saw the title of this piece. A brilliant intro.

Great article, I would add the original Nightmare On Elm Street where Fred makes his glove, terrorised me for days when I first watched that (at too young an age!)

"The Hunger" has always been at the very top of my list. That thundering music, intercut still frames and well, Catherine Deneuve.

"Touch of Evil" too. Strange and compelling and Charleton Heston as a Mexican cop? Only Orson Welles.

And I'll add an Amen to Do the Right Thing.

Get Over It. Superb opening

Fight Club. Great music, great visuals and a great reveal at the end.

WTF!?!? No Star Wars?!?

*offers hand. I love both of those films aswell

UFO had a fantastic intro. Carnivàle and True blood also have awesome intros and I loved Cowboy bepop is one of my favourite anime intros ever.

The first rule of Best Title Sequence lists is 'You do not forget Fight Club.'
The second rule of Best Title Sequences lists is 'You do NOT forget Fight Club!'

Really good list. I'm betting it was a tough choice when it came to choosing a Sergio Leone. Once Upon a Time in the West's titles are a superb demonstration of visual storytelling. One other title sequence that always grabs me is the opening to David Cronenberg's The Dead Zone, where the idyllic, picture-postcard stills of small town America are slowly blacked out a small piece at a time to reveal the title, and to warn you of something darker beneath the surface of things.

*sniff* I knew I couldn't be the only one! *sob*

I know there's already a Tarantino film on this list but the intro to Pulp Fiction is pretty iconic too. The change in music, with the use of the radio tuner adds to it too

Good choice, always loved that. You really feel for the waiter that dies through Indy's grimace, even though the guy's had one line.

Aye, it's a nice performance from them both, his look of bewilderment as the blood soaks through his shirt after the champagne bottles have popped and the glass on his tray has shattered followed by the understanding is really nice and subtle.

I remember the actor on a British chat show bigged up his part so that I was expecting him to be a sort of Sallah type character so was genuinely surprised that he died so quickly.

He lasted a bit longer in View to a Kill I suppose.

Well between this and the Jitterbug / Fight sequence in 1941 he would have done an excellent job of one.

I love Lao Che's sons reaction to that line - they come across as a pair of insufferable pricks.

That's what was 'the most' disappointing thing about Crystal Skull.. the lack of any nuance, character investment or creativity.. a really poor way for the series to end considering the predecessor.. I actually really quite like ToD; the chemistry between Willie and Indy ("...primitive mating rituals") and the dark tone of the piece.

Temple of Doom is a very close second to Raiders for me - I love that it has a completely different structure, nobody gives a bad performance and the horror / action / comedy are all really well written. I'm open minded but it's one of a handful of movies that I can't quite see why it's so badly regarded by some fans of the Indy series.

KotCS is a depressingly poor, you're right - no nuance or flourish in any of the characters (apart from perhaps the young Russian who gets innvolved in the race at the beginning). I think it's a terrible film - but ironically apart from the cgi gopher I really like the opening sequence.

Rage! that my own particular favourite wasnt included on this semi arbitrary list that someone took a lot of time and effort to do and that I enjoyed. I will retire to my boudoir and cry tears of righteous fury.

Or something.

Love the Holy Grail titles, but my DVD version eliminates the first Swedish translation: "Monti Pyton ik den Holie Grailen", or however the damned Swedes misspell it. So anyone who hasn't seen it before (and shame on them), won't get the joke. Ralph the Wonder Llama would crack anyone up, but still.

Love the On the Buses opening titles, but I would say that I prefer both the visuals and music (by Ron Grainer, I believe) to the sequel, Mutiny on the Buses.

I hope you left your bird at 'ome before singing the praises of MotB

I'll see your Cowboy and put Battle of the Planets on the table

Don't know how you could have missed 'To kill a Mockingbird' (1962). It is actually used in some film schools as an example of how to do a great title sequence.

My personal favourite is the credits sequence for the remake of 'Dawn of the Dead' coming as it does after an already terrific pre-credits sequence (possibly the best bit of the film). Its gives a quick exposition of a world rapidly going to hell and the visuals and use of Johnny Cash's 'When the Man Comes Around' just fit together so well, setting things up nicely for what is too follow.

Skyfall!

X-Men Origins : Wolverine. The credit sequence was what the entire film should have been - Logan and Victor fighting wars through the years.

Oh, good call about The Conversation. One of my favourite films, and that opening sequence is great.

Why not the opening sequence of the original Superman movie (or perhaps Superman II)? Strictly speaking it's not creditsequence, but the opening of Purple Rain is brilliant and I would also liked to have seen the innovative credits of The Music Man on this list...

Agreed. I'm not a fan of when Hollywood spins stories out over several films, but a proper Wolverine trilogy telling his epic back story would have been awesome. Same with First Class and the turning of Magneto, in my opinion.

This only goes up to H...?

I presume there will be more to follow as I can't see Watchmen in here. My fav of all time.

2 words. Fight Club...

You seem to have misplaced Spartacus (1960) and To Kill a Mockingbird (1962).

ooh. good one. Bauhaus doing Bela Lugosi's Dead

That's a very good list. Especially as it doesn't just include the usual suspects like Reservoir Dogs and Raging Bull, but films like Tintin (which isn't a great film, but does have a great credit sequence) and Watchmen.

if we were including end credits 21 jump street wins actually thinking about it opening credits are pretty good too.

Say what you like about Watchmen (I certainly have) but, credit where it's due, that is a stunning opening sequence. Even more so if you already knew the book before seeing the film.

ZOMBIELAND

How about the credit sequence for "Catch Me If You Can" along with John Williams' breezy jazz riffs?

I'll second Temple of Doom.
Also, Trainspotting, Goodfellas, Highlander.

"a long time ago in a galaxy far far away" +
STAR
WARS
+ opening text crawl
these are considered by many (not all) to be opening credits.
So nur !

Hit the "Page 2" button.

There are just too many to choose from. I tip my hat to David Fincher for most of his movies (TGWTDT, Panic Room, Se7en, Fight Club) having great openings. I do love the Maurice Binder sequences in the Bond movies. Some other memorable opening credits: Batman (1989), O Brother Where Art Thou?, The Shining, Once Upon A Time In The West (which may be one of the best opening scenes EVER), The Royal Tenenbaums. Yeah, there are just too many great ones when you have half a million movies to choose from.

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