Heath Ledger in The Dark Knight

Top 10: Opening Movie Sequences

Lights down.  Film rolls.  Movie starts.  A director has a limited amount of time, especially in the ADHD world we live in today, to whack audiences between the eyes and grab their attention for the rest of their film.  Looper has put together a list of the 10 best opening sequences of all-time (the list appears to be a few years old).  You can’t argue with The Godfather, The Dark Knight, or Rear Window.  I’m not sure there aren’t better examples of an astounding opening sequence though than Hustle and Flow or Halloween, for example.  I think the list is a good jumping-off point for conversation more than I think Looper did a fantastic, impeccable job assembling the greatest opening scenes of all-time.  Patton was one that jumped immediately to my mind.  What, after reviewing Looper’s choices, are some films you feel should have made this list?

Marlon Brando and James Caan in The Godfather

4 thoughts on “Top 10: Opening Movie Sequences”

  1. Interesting list, but if you’re going to pick the top 10, it’s way off the mark. I take it back, these things are subjective, but in my book Raiders of the Lost Ark so needs to be here. Actually, viewed in a vacuum, Temple of Doom needs to be here more, but if you’re going to pick an Indy film for the list, you pick Raiders. Also Touch of Evil so needs to be here.

    Also… and this is moving out of subjective territory, and edging perilously close to Truth… Saving Private Ryan. But I guess the sequence lasts 20 minutes, and technically we see an older Ryan visiting Arlington National Cemetery first.

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  2. The Dark Knight sequence might be my favorite opening sequence of all time. Don’t know if it’s the best, but it kills me every time, and then the rest of the movie actually lives up to it.

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  3. I wonder how old this list is, because it’s leaving out a huge one that just occurred to me: Inglorious Basterds. Christoph Waltz, monologing at that table, with the people under the floorboards. It’s such a brilliant opening, there are no words.

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