The Dark Knight Rises Anticipation Station

Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by JacksonArcher, Oct 27, 2010.

  1. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Re: Third Nolan Batman film title announced!

    Call me old-fashioned, but credits belong at the beginning. If nothing else, at least the title belongs at the beginning. You don't leave the front cover of a book blank and put the title on the back page. (Yeah, yeah, I know that's a flawed analogy because a book cover has more of a marketing purpose, but I'm being curmudgeonly, so get off my lawn!) ;)
     
  2. Captaindemotion

    Captaindemotion Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Re: Third Nolan Batman film title announced!

    ^Depends. I think the Star Wars movies have been really distinctive by the absence of traditional opening credits at the start. IIRC, Lucas had to leave the Directors' Guild of America or some other organisation because he insisted on Star Wars: A New Hope being opened in that way.
     
  3. JacksonArcher

    JacksonArcher Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Re: Third Nolan Batman film title announced!

    We've seen how many films open with titles and credits? I am not going to begrudge a film for trying something different and leaving the title and credits for the end.
     
  4. JarodRussell

    JarodRussell Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Re: Third Nolan Batman film title announced!

    I agree. A good main title sequence sets up the mood, gives me time to delve into the film.

    But there are exceptions. I like the opening title for Lethal Weapon 2 & 4 especially, for example.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=52We4F0BWRU
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f9ee1oTQBJM

    It's just the title, nothing else, and then cut straight to the action. But that's for action movies. Other genres need a good title sequence!


    It's not that different anymore. Kinda every movie does that now. Comes with that insane "movies need to be fast paced" demand in Hollywood. At some point in the future, they will even cut away prologue and epilogue of a story. Why not dive straight into the action sequence of the climax instead?
     
  5. JacksonArcher

    JacksonArcher Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Re: Third Nolan Batman film title announced!

    I don't mind title sequences, but at the same time they can become perfunctory and rather dull. I don't see how wanting to get right into the story automatically gets associated with faster-paced films. I don't mind sitting through main title sequences but at the same time unless they have something valuable to contribute to the story, I really don't see the point in having them.

    Also, I wouldn't say "every movie" does away with a title sequence nowadays- I can think of several new films I've seen this year which had an opening title sequence (Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World, The Social Network, Iron Man 2, etc. all had main title sequences). Also, I'm remembering the Spider-Man films, which all had elaborate main title sequences, and the Superman films, including the most recent Superman Returns, which had a very long, intricate main title sequence.

    I have no problem with title logos premiering at the beginning of the film- for example, I thought the title emblazoned over the Starfleet insignia for 2009's Star Trek was very cool. However, I think having the title at the end of Nolan's Batman movies is more of a thematic choice and not really a stylistic choice, as others might like to believe- Nolan's films before that have had title sequences and titles at the beginning of the films (like Memento and Insomnia, for example).
     
  6. DigificWriter

    DigificWriter Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Re: Third Nolan Batman film title announced!

    It was actually The Empire Strikes Back, and the reason he left the guilds (both the DGA and the WGA) was because they went after Irvin Kirschner and fined him (Kirsh) a quarter of a million dollars. Lucas was so pissed off by the whole situation that he paid all the fines himself, and then quit both guilds.
     
  7. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Re: Third Nolan Batman film title announced!

    But at least he put the title at the beginning.



    But that's just it -- it's not different anymore. It's been standard practice for over a decade now to put the credits at the end, even if the title is still usually up front. That's the whole reason I'm complaining about it: because it's become the norm rather than an exception, and I miss the good old days of up-front credits and creative main title sequences. (Although we're increasingly getting creative end-title sequences to make up for it.)

    There's been a progression over the history of motion pictures. Originally, all the credits were shown up front, and there was nothing at the close of the picture except "THE END" and maybe a cast list. But over time, as productions got larger and more complex and as more and more unions successfully negotiated for screen credit, the credits got longer and longer, so the practice evolved to put the "above the line" credits (the folks who get residuals) up front and the rest at the end. And that prevailed for decades. But then Lucas broke that pattern with Star Wars, setting a precedent. Others didn't follow right away, but as the trailers preceding films got longer and longer -- and especially once they started showing commercials before movies -- it came to be believed that audiences were being made to wait long enough, so the credits increasingly came to be moved to the end.

    But I don't see what's wrong with showing the credits over the opening action. Heck, that's become the norm in TV these days, replacing the conventional title sequence. And darn it, I like reading credits. I'm a text-oriented kind of guy.
     
  8. JacksonArcher

    JacksonArcher Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Re: Third Nolan Batman film title announced!

    Like I mentioned before, there are still plenty of contemporary films have still have elaborate and creative opening title sequences. The James Bond movies still have opening title sequences, the Spider-Man movies had opening title sequences, the Superman movies like I mentioned earlier had opening title sequences (and even Superman Returns had a rather lengthy opening title sequence). I even listed some films that came out this year (Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World, The Social Network, Iron Man 2 just to name a few) that still had titles and a credit sequence at the beginning.

    Yes, that's what usually happens, and I'm actually okay with that, so long as the story gets into gear and I'm not fiddling my thumbs for five or so minutes while credits run waiting for the damn story to start.

    Which is ironic since film is a purely visual medium. Perhaps you should stick to books? ;)
     
  9. ElimParra

    ElimParra Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Re: Third Nolan Batman film title announced!

    I loved how in the Dark Knight in went straight to the Joker's bank scene (after the DC logo & movie logo). Hopefully shall see on one of the villian intro scenes first up.

    With the title, it's okay.
     
  10. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Re: Third Nolan Batman film title announced!

    But they're in the minority these days. It's nice that there are still some, but I wish there were more.


    Granted for the first two, but I don't know why you'd bring up the previous Superman movies; they come from an era when main-title sequences were still the norm. It's only in the past couple of decades that they've become uncommon.

    And yeah, Returns did have an opening title sequence, but I recall hating it; it was way too garish and cluttered and overdone with the bizarre CGI space scenes that looked more like something out of a video game than anything remotely like actual space scenes. Much like the end-title sequence to Star Trek (2009), which suffered from the same excesses. (I wish the ST'09 end title sequence had been along the lines of the TOS and VGR main titles: shots of the Enterprise travelling through space and past planets and astronomical vistas, ideally more realistic-looking ones than they used. Giving us a taste of the space exploration that was absent in the film proper.)
     
  11. T'Baio

    T'Baio Admiral Admiral

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    Re: Third Nolan Batman film title announced!

    Credit sequences or not, I think it depends on the film. I find films that lend themselves to more "gravitas" are better opening without a title sequence. Titanic did it quite well. But then sometimes, such as Se7en, a great title sequence really lends itself to setting the mood. It's often a choice of marketing or contractual obligations, or perhaps something that's not even thought of and just assumed it'll be there, but I think a credit sequence (or not) should be an artistic choice.
     
  12. Admiral_Young

    Admiral_Young Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Re: Third Nolan Batman film title announced!

    I don't know why we're talking about title sequences all of a sudden but again, it wasn't silly of Nolan to not put them in either movie. In the case of "The Dark Knight" he knew that we were going right into an intense, high octane, riveting bank robbery which sets the tone and pace for the rest of the movie in my opinion. He didn't want to distract or clutter people's attention with unnecessary distraction which the opening credits and title sequence would have been. Maybe you could get away with flashing "The Dark Knight" designed as the bats but otherwise I think not having the credits works in both movies because it allows the viewer to jump right into the story and that was probably the intent.

    I will say that I do like an elaborate well done title sequence like "Scott Pilgrim Vs The World" (I thought if I was stoned it would have been even more incredible) or like the "X-Men" and "Spider-Man" movies had. Otherwise get me to the story please.
     
  13. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Re: Third Nolan Batman film title announced!

    ^Yeah, I get that. But like I said, I don't see the problem with showing the credits over the action as TV shows usually do, as opposed to having a separate title sequence. If you don't want to pay attention to the text onscreen, you can easily ignore it. (Heck, most people apparently do, judging from all the threads I see with people asking for the identities of actors or writers whose names were clearly shown in the opening credits.)

    Alternatively, if you want to let the audience get into the action right away, you can do what many films have done: start out with a credit-less action sequence, then run the credits at the first lull. I just don't see the need to push them all the way to the end.

    At the very least, I don't see how just showing the name of the film at the beginning would've hurt anything. I can kinda see the argument for not distracting from the action by flashing a lot of text on the screen, but the title doesn't have to be up for more than a few seconds.

    But, you know...

    On second thought, productions about Superman and Batman tend to have an unusual relationship to titles. There are a lot of them that don't actually show the title onscreen at all, or at least not fully. The 1988 animated Superman series didn't show the word "Superman" onscreen in its main titles, just the S logo (although Bill Woodson's narration did include the name several times). Neither Batman: The Animated Series nor Superman: TAS showed an onscreen logo at all in their original title sequences (though the retitled versions The Adventures of Batman and Robin and The New Batman/Superman Adventures did). IIRC, Batman Forever didn't show its full title onscreen, just the word "FOREVER" superimposed on the Bat-symbol, as if the Bat-symbol were an ideogram for the word "Batman."

    Although, of course, nothing beats The Dark Knight, which not only doesn't show the word "Batman" in its onscreen title, but eliminates it altogether.
     
  14. Admiral_Young

    Admiral_Young Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Re: Third Nolan Batman film title announced!

    We're not talking about television shows though, we're specifically talking about the Nolan movies, using other examples deters from the topic. Anyways I understand your point Christopher, I just think Nolan chose to forgo the titles for story purposes.
     
  15. Too Much Fun

    Too Much Fun Commodore Commodore

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    Re: Third Nolan Batman film title announced!

    It really depends on the movie. I was just reading someone's account of how, when this movie came out, everyone in the theatre cheered when Jim Carrey's name appeared in the opening title sequence. That movie began with every actor's name presented in huge, flying letters, I think because that movie purposely tried to assemble a really high profile, popular cast, so it was part of the point.

    In Nolan's movies, there's no desire to show off how 'cool' the cast is. Instead, the point is that the whole movie builds to the title. In the first one Batman is clearly just getting started at the end, and "The Dark Knight" title appearing right after Gary Oldman says the words in dialog for the first time was just a transcendent moment.

    Like many people here, I was disappointed when I first heard the title of the new movie, but looking back on the way the titles have figured into the last two Batman movies, I can imagine it feeling pretty cool in the end. I bet the ending will be uplifting and when the screen fades to black and we see the title, we'll be happy for Batman and feel like he has truly 'risen'. :angel:
     
  16. Kegg

    Kegg Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Re: Third Nolan Batman film title announced!

    I rather liked the title sequences to the first two Batman films, but that was mostly because they were excuses to moodily wallow in Danny Elfman's score.

    Truth is, while the scores to the Nolan films work well enough in context, they're not something I'd just want to douse myself in at the start of the movie. So I can pass on having a credit sequence.

    I will confound this argument entirely by saying I really like Fahrenheit 451's opening credits.
     
  17. Trent Roman

    Trent Roman Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Re: Third Nolan Batman film title announced!

    I enjoy a good opening sequence. Problem is, most aren't. They usually go for a 'suitable' font and maybe some kind of token effect (how many films have 'drifting' letters in their opening sequence), and doesn't serve any purpose than to advertise a film you're already watching. Sometimes they're actively bad, like the horribly rendered opening to Superman Returns, which put me off the movie still barely begun. I've always appreciated the Bond films for trying to create stylistic openings, and I recall with fondness the opening sequences to Spider-Man 2, or Snyder's Dawn of the Dead and (especially) Watchmen. But if all you're going to do is throw up some glorified WordArt, save it for the end.

    Fictitiously yours, Trent Roman
     
  18. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Re: Third Nolan Batman film title announced!

    I have to wonder, now that you mention that, if there's a correlation between the shift away from opening title sequences and the decline of clearly defined musical themes in film scores. Maybe if there isn't a main-title sequence, there's less incentive to come up with a cool main theme to introduce and define the film.

    Well, that might be kinda bogus, because there are a number of films that have strong themes without having main-title sequences that showcase them, such as Robocop or the Indiana Jones movies (which do have opening credits, but not over the Indy theme -- and only Temple of Doom has a distinct title sequence as opposed to merely showing the credits over the action). Still, it might be a contributing factor to a degree.


    Oh yeah, that was inspired. Of course, it's not too different from what Quinn Martin shows on TV were doing at the time, having the announcer declare the episode title and guest stars, but it was a great thematic fit for the story.


    Spider-Man 2 had probably the best opening titles of the past two decades. What a brilliant idea, using the title sequence as a recap of the first movie! And doing it through Alex Ross paintings! It was both functional and beautiful, and it evoked the comics medium from which the films were drawn. I was deeply disappointed when they didn't do it again for S-M3.

    Watchmen was also a good example of using the titles to tell the backstory, but I didn't like it quite as much because I'm just not that fond of Zack Snyder's visual style. Although I daresay the title sequence was perhaps the most effective part of the movie.
     
  19. JarodRussell

    JarodRussell Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Re: Third Nolan Batman film title announced!

    Anyone seen Sahara? One of the best opening title sequences I've seen.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lObeFAfZf1w

    Tells you everything you need to know about the characters, their work and where the story takes place. And fantastic cinematography.
     
  20. RoJoHen

    RoJoHen Awesome Premium Member

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    Re: Third Nolan Batman film title announced!

    If a movie is going to have a title sequence, it needs to be interesting and actually introduce the story. I absolutely despise James Bond opening sequences because it's just 3-4 minutes of random visuals that serve no purpose. As much as I liked "Scott Pilgrim vs. The World," the title sequence is annoying. I don't want to watch 3 minutes of people's names.

    Whatever you think of the movie, I have to say that I really enjoyed "Star Trek: Insurrection's" title sequence. It helped establish the setting, while simultaneously crediting the people involved.