30 Great Opening Movie Sequences: "The Hangover"

Discussion in 'Archive: The Amphitheatre' started by Nevermind, Dec 19, 2011.

  1. Nevermind Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 14, 2001
    star 6
    SAVING PRIVATE RYAN

    "The movie opens with a World War II veteran visiting the Normandy American Cemetery and Memorial. The man drops to his knees in tears, and then the scene cuts to June 6, 1944, the beginning of the Normandy invasion. The movie is known for the intense depiction of the Omaha Beach assault, but its emotional opener set us up for the joltingly violent war scene."
  2. Darth McClain Arena Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Feb 5, 2000
    star 6
    Classic opening sequence. I think that the movie slowly goes downhill from there, but it starts off on a high note.
  3. Chancellor_Ewok Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 8, 2004
    star 6
    Agreed. Easily one of the four or five best intros ever.

    Again agreed, but having said that it would be hard for ANY movie to live up to such a stellar opening sequence.
  4. Darth McClain Arena Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Feb 5, 2000
    star 6
    That's certainly true, it would be tough to live up to, but I think it wouldn't be unreasonable to expect a better rest of the film. It wasn't bad by any stretch, but it could have been more.
  5. The_Four_Dot_Elipsis Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 3, 2005
    star 5
    The whole thing can easily be called one of the great films of the 90s, but that opening sequence actually changed cinema. For worse perhaps, since all facsimiles of this faux-doco style (with the notable exception of Paul Greengrass's work) don't work.
  6. Luke_Sparkewalker Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 23, 2001
    star 4
    I think it works well for war/history films, and is pretty much the bench mark these days.

    Blackhawk down - band of brothers - enemy at the gates(opening sequence)

  7. yankee8255 Chosen One

    Member Since:
    May 31, 2005
    star 6
    I'm with Ewok on both points -- the opening is tremendous, but the rest sags tremendously. Weak plot, and the finale descends into 3rd rate WWII stereotype-ville. "Yoohoo, stupid German tank, come down this street!"
  8. Nevermind Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 14, 2001
    star 6
    SCREAM
    ''Why do you want to know my name?'' ''Because I want to know who I'm looking at.'' In the first few minutes of this teen horror classic, we hear a telephone conversation that makes me never want to be home alone again. Completely terrifying. "
  9. The_Four_Dot_Elipsis Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 3, 2005
    star 5
    Just about the best 5 or 10 minutes of Craven's career, I'd say.
  10. corran2 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 16, 2006
    star 4
    Yes, probably the best opening to a horror film ever. The camera has a grace to it that is quite remarkable. The movie is good, but almost feels like an hour and a half of anti-climax after the brilliant opening.
  11. JohnWesleyDowney Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jan 27, 2004
    star 5
    Saving Private Ryan is a tribute to brave men who died to protect our freedom. When that movie came out on more than one occasion I saw grown men,
    elderly men, weeping at a movie that finally put a spotlight on their sacrifices in a way that was so effective it could not be ignored. They lived
    it and they were around long enough to see someone who cared enough about what they did enough to create a fitting tribute to them.

    If someone can't see the value of that remarkable film past it's highly visceral and cinematic opening segment, you are completely missing
    the point of the film. You're not looking hard enough. It's right in front of you.

    I know of at least five cases personally of fathers and grandfathers beginning a dialogue with younger relatives about what they personally
    experienced in World War II as a result of the younger relatives seeing the film, being moved by it, and wanting to know more. These veterans
    had held these stories inside them for decades. And I know that at the time there were websites where thousands upon thousands of people told similar stories
    about connecting with older family members in a way they never had before. Saving Private Ryan did it's job well.

    It woke up a generation of young kids to the brutality of World War II and the sacrifices made by a whole generation.

    A weak plot? I cannot think of a more worthy story line than that of men trying to save a lone surviving son from death in a war zone so that
    the son may be returned to a devastated mother who is grieving over the loss of her other three sons. That is a plot line about COMMON DECENCY.

    Sometimes there are things far, far more important than snappy, cutting film criticism. It's important to take note of the humanity, sacrifice and suffering that the film is trying to convey.

    The gratitude that old Private Ryan expresses in the French graveyard at the end of the film, for the fact that he was saved so he could live a
    good life, is representative of the appreciation that all free people everywhere should have for what the soldiers of many nations did in World War II,
    which was defeat tyranny and preserve freedom. We all enjoy the benefits of those sacrifices to this day, such as the freedom of expression exercised
    on these discussion boards.
  12. Nevermind Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 14, 2001
    star 6
    THE SOUND OF MUSIC

    "Julie Andrews' character, Maria, basks in the beauty of the Alps by belting out the opening number of the 1965 classic, The Sound of Music. The hills are indeed alive."
  13. Obi Anne FF admin Celebrations, Europe

    Administrator
    Member Since:
    Nov 4, 1998
    star 7
    The whole opening from the clouds down to Maria's meadow is breathtaking and every time I watch I just want to go down to the Alps.
  14. Nevermind Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 14, 2001
    star 6
    STAR WARS: EPISODE IV

    ''A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away ... It is a period of civil war.'' And thus begins most famous text crawl of all time. The Star Wars theme and floating yellow type set the stage for the epic space franchise that lives on today."
  15. Rogue1-and-a-half Manager Emeritus who is writing his masterpiece

    Member Since:
    Nov 2, 2000
    star 8
    Classic. That opening chord, the opening crawl and then that massive Star Destroyer. Absolutely iconic.
  16. The_Four_Dot_Elipsis Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 3, 2005
    star 5
    Umm, but that's the title sequence. I'd say that the opening sequence is really the pan down to Tatooine, and then the ships flying overhead, engaged in battle, and the scenes that follow, arguably up until the initial stormtrooper attack has finished.
  17. Chancellor_Ewok Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 8, 2004
    star 6
    Agreed. The Star Wars titles sequence is legendary.
  18. Darth McClain Arena Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Feb 5, 2000
    star 6
    Yep, it's definitely classic.
  19. yankee8255 Chosen One

    Member Since:
    May 31, 2005
    star 6
    Regardless of whether you want to include the crawl or not, it's definitely classic.
  20. madman007 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 22, 2007
    star 4
    You can take the whole title sequence in as a whole from the STAR WARS title and the text. But like many young ones seeing it for the first time, my jaw dropped open at the sight of that looooooong ship flying overhead. And none of us have been the same since. That's the way to open a movie; series.
  21. Jabbadabbado Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Mar 19, 1999
    star 7
    One of the reasons Star Wars ANH was one of the most successful movies of all time is that it hooks you in the first 60 seconds. Few other films have done that so successfully. The only other SW film with an opening that comes remotely close is Revenge of the Sith, although it suffers a bit from sensory overload.
  22. DarthBoba Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jun 29, 2000
    star 9
    Fantastic opening. I hadn't owned a TV in a long time until recently, and I'd forgotten just how huge the Star Destroyer actually IS...it just goes on and on and on. Looking forward to seeing it on a movie screen again in about four years. :D

    Also, it's handy material for proving that stormtroopers are exactly as deadly as Obi-Wan says they are. Let's see some Amp regulars go charging down a four-foot-across hallways while a dozen people are shooting at them and see how well they fare. Probably won't be nearly as good as the storms do. :p

    Edit: Lord Vader's introduction is awesome as well. Wish they'd remove the blaster fire in the background and amplify Vader's breathing even more, but it sets him up as THE villain incredibly well. He's outright menacing without a single line.
  23. The_Four_Dot_Elipsis Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 3, 2005
    star 5
    I've always liked that Return of the Jedi replicates the opening shot of Star Wars, although it is almost the exact opposite: leisurely, with ominous scoring and a friggin' Death Star replacing a moon. One of the few genuinely atmospheric parts of that film.

    Empire wouldn't work with a whiz-bang opening. The Revenge opening is impressive but the artificiality is overriding. I do like the upwards pan of Attack of the Clones though. That film has me interested for approximately 60 seconds and then offends me for two hours.
  24. Chancellor_Ewok Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 8, 2004
    star 6
    Agreed. The establishing shot of Vader in Ep. IV is perfect. All you see is a towering figure in sinister black armour striding through dead bodies and a cloud of smoke. You know everything you need to know about Vader in under 30 seconds, in a scene with no dialogue.
  25. Jedi_Keiran_Halcyon Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 17, 2000
    star 6
    The problem with the RotS opening is that the GIANT battle is nothing but a backdrop. We have no real investment in the outcome of the battle; it's just some flashing lights as our heroes taxi to to their destination. I can't even tell which ships are fighting for which side in most shots.

    Maybe Lucas is making a statement here about how there's a sky full of death and destruction and the only "important" lives are a handful of VIPs. But compared to the SW opening that tells you exactly who's who and what's going on with a single moving image, RotS is just a mess.