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Best Movie Opening Sequences?


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Watching The Dark Knight again, and that awesome opening bank robbery, got me thinking about other movies with amazing openings... what are some of your favourite movie openings?


A few that I think grab you immediately:


  • The Dark Knight - the bank robbery
  • Casino Royale - black and white "chat" interspersed with b&w messy fight in bathroom. Followed by awesome credits sequence
  • Pulp Fiction - diner robbery followed by Misirlou
  • X-Men 2 - Nightcrawler's assault
  • Lord of War - following a bullet from manufacture to the point it ends up in someone's skull
  • Gangs of New York - brutal street battle
  • Raiders of the Lost Ark - ...

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I think you should define 'opening sequence' for this discussion. Some of these examples are just the start of the movie. Other, like Contact, are stylistic sequences in support of, but not directly tied, to the narrative. The opening battle in Saving Private Ryan isn't even the first sequence of the film.

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I've always loved the opening sequence of Superman. In one shot, we go from the black and white theater curtains, into a comic book sitting on a living room floor, into space and through the cosmos, past the red Krypton sun, and finally to the surface of the planet itself. All the while, we're treated to a fantastic opening credits sequence that's underscored by one of the most magnificent themes John Williams has ever written.



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I took it as anything in the first 10 minutes :-)


That's a good enough definition for me. No need to be restrictive.



How about From Dusk 'til Dawn - liquor store situation that ends with them killing everyone and blowing the place up, whilst walking calmly back to their car.



  • Office Space - each character dealing with their morning commute.
  • Top Gun - Jets taking off from an aircraft carrier with Kenny Loggins blasting
  • Rocky III - montage of Rocky kicking ass and Mr. T going nuts, set to Eye of the Tiger

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Great list. I'll add another favorite opening, from a film that is NOT a favorite: Superman Returns. It's the long pullback from Krypton, with narration by Brando's Jor-El overlaid on Williams' iconic score.


Why don't I just show you: Click Me. Just great beyond belief. I bought the HD-DVD (pwned) just for that minute.

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