2019 Movies: Grand Openings, Grand Closings

To continue my recap of 2019 in film, we move from yesterday’s Miscellaneous Honors to today’s subject: my favorite openings and closings of the year, replete with one-line descriptions of each:


OPENING SHOT

1. The Irishman — From the Copacabana to Death

2. Ad Astra — Lights, Camera, Earth

3. Rojo — House 

4. Rolling Thunder Revue: A Bob Dylan Story by Martin Scorsese — Conjuration

5. Climax — Interviews

6. Relaxer — The Meaningless Void of Life…Depending On Your Perspective, That Is

7. The Lighthouse — Ship in the Fog

8. Chained for Life — I Can’t See My Face When I’m With You

9. The Third Wife — CGI Can’t Touch This, Nah Nah Nah Nah

10. Uncut Gems — Diamond in the Rough It Causes

11. Honey Boy — Transformers

12. 1917 — Dragging Us From Nature to Hell

13. Midsommar — Art

14. Under the Silver Lake — Subliminal Images, a Key to Where/Who/What is the Killer Dog?

15. The Edge of Democracy — Impressionistic Paparazzi Symbolizes Perspective of Democratic Populace

16. The Cave — Bombs Dropping

17. The Kingmaker — Pied Piper?

18. Grass — A Man Observationally Lords Over Potted Nature

19. Wild Nights with Emily — Kiss, Pookie Poetry

20. The Aftermath — Bombs Across the Night Sky

21. Perfect — “Illusory”

22. I Do Not Care If We Go Down in History as Barbarians — Climax

23. Slut in a Good Way — Fashion Show, Runway Shopping, Depth and Focus


PRE OPENING-CREDITS / TITLE-CARD SCENE

1. Climax — Interviews

2. The Art of Self-Defense — Parlez-Vous Français?

3. The Fall of the American Empire — Everyone’s Dumb

4. High Life — Preparing for the End, at the Beginning

5. Toy Story 4 — Goodbye, Peach

6. The Dead Don’t Die — Tom Waits!

7. The Kingmaker — Pied Piper?

8. Once Upon a Time … in Hollywood — Hollywood Fakery

9. Child’s Play — Infomercial

10. Relaxer — So Long

11. Asako I & II

12. Black Mother — Cinematic Language 101

13. The Two Popes — Prank Call

14. Knife + Heart — Music-Video Overture

15. Be Natural: The Untold Story of Alice Guy-Blaché — Visual History of Hollywood


PRE-CREDITS SCENES (plural!)

1. Midsommar — Tragedy

2. Queen & SlimMeet-Cute Ruined


OPENING SCENE

A pre-credits (be they the opening credits or simply a title card) scene is not the same as an opening scene: there’s a difference between building to familiar onscreen text, and introducing the world of the movie that seamlessly transitions into the rest of the movie.

 

1. Marriage StoryDueling Voiceovers

2. Knife + HeartDeath by Dildo

3. A Faithful ManPreggers

4. LoroTragedy = “Goat’s Song”

5. DogmanIt’s a Man-Cleans-Dog World


TITLE CARD

1. A Martin Scorsese Double FeatureThe Irishman (“I Heard You Paint Houses”) & Rolling Thunder Revue: A Bob Dylan Story by Martin Scorsese (“Conjuring The Rolling Thunder Revue: A Bob Dylan Story by Martin Scorsese”)

2. High Life — Bodies Floating in Space

3. Her Smell — Name Up in Lights

4. Once Upon a Time … in Hollywood — Last Shot

5. Apollo 11 — “11” Composed of Names Responsible

6. Aniara — A Flickering Dot Against the Black Void, Floating Towards the Light of “I”

7. The Beach Bum — Floating on Biscayne Bay

8. End of the Century — “Fin…de Siglo”

9. Luz — So Abrasive

10. Les Misérables — Arc de Triomphe

11. Ad Astra — Lights

12. Invisible Life — Fog

13. Satanic Panic — “SATANIC PANIC! SATANIC PANIC!”

14. Loro — Sex

15. Portrait of a Lady on Fire — Spoken

16. Poms“Bitter With the Sweet”

17. Island of the Hungry Ghosts — Static Title, Shaky Camerawork

18. The Man Who Killed Hitler and Then The Bigfoot — Split Screen

19. The Wandering EarthEarth as a Spaceship!

20. The Hole in the Ground — The Sky is the Ultimate Hole in this Upside-Down World

21. The Sun Is Also a Star — Manhattanhenge

22. The Art of Self-Defense — BADASS ENDING!!!


OPENING CREDITS

1. Rojo Between Long Scenes

2. Climax — Throughout the Movie

3. Little Monsters — Fighting

4. Relaxer — The Meaningless Void of Life…Depending On Your Perspective, That Is

5. Woman at War — The Band!

6. Wild Rose — “Country Girl”

7. Waves — Circles

8. Aniara — Scroll: The Beginning is the End (of Earth)

9. Pig — Dancing Bugs

10. Les Misérables — Rioting

11. The Dead Don’t Die — “The Dead Don’t Die”

12.  Toy Story 4 — You (I?) Have A Different Friend *in* Me

13. Sunset — Painted Backdrop

14. Pain and Glory Morphing (Mutating?) Art

15. Poms — “Bitter With the Sweet”

16. Queen & Slim VO

17. Sorry Angel — Staccato Models

18. Synonyms Bottom to Top

19. Chained for Life — Character Names, Opening Shot

20. Greener Grass Jittery, Bracesed Smile

21. In Fabric Production Zine Photos

22. Mine 9 Miner’s Song

23. Hotel by the River Voiceover Dictation

24. Zombieland: Double Tap Columbia Logo Lady Kicking Zombie Ass

25. Tito and the Birds Painting!

26. Piercing Grindhouse

27. Spies in Disguise Bond, Animated Bond

28. The Hustle Animation!

29. Velvet Buzzsaw Art!

30. Teen Spirit — Movie Starts Before Company Logos

31. Downton Abbey — Egalitarianism!


CLOSING CREDITS

1. The Image Book — When’s It Over?

2. Once Upon a Time … in Hollywood — Guns For Hire, No Matter the Cause + Superhero Commercial(ity), Old/New

3. The Amazing Johnathan Documentary — “Simon Chinn” + Shots of Detroit (more worthwhile subject than what/whom most modern documentaries are about…but, still, what’s their worth?)

4. Rolling Thunder Revue: A Bob Dylan Story by Martin Scorsese — Never-Ending Tour Dates, Illusory Mask, Encore, Font, “Major Players”

5. Rojo A Masqued Face in the Crowd

6. 6 Underground Models

7. Cold Pursuit “In Order of Disappearance”

8. UntogetherThe Never-Ending Los Angeles Walk

9. Knife + Heart WTF Orgy Porn

10. The Art of Self-Defense — Looking Away, but Aware of the Seemingly-Harmless Generational Indoctrination Around Us

11. The Two Popes Should They, And We, Be Laughing Together?

12. The Laundromat Bahamas Without Them

13. Under the Silver Lake — Seeing Life as a Collection of Hand-Drawn Symbols, Drawn by an Unknown Hand. Are We Deducing Meaning from — or Projecting Meaning onto — These Symbols? The Final Pieces to the Puzzle, or One Last Punch of Troll-esque Nonsense (Which isn’t a Pejorative Here)?

14. Chained for Life — Consent?

15. Poms — Curtain Call

16. Slut in a Good Way — Bollywood Commentary??!!

17. Zombieland: Double Tap Bill Fucking Murray

18. Relaxer — Pac-Man “Exit Music”

19. Trespassers Aspect-Ratio Zoom-Out 

20. The Third Wife — Textual and Aural Flow, Vocal and Environmental Nature (Water)

21. Wild Nights with Emily Primary Source?

22. Apollo 11 — The Long Tail of Indelible Imagery

23. Ad Astra — Bookending Lights

24. Climax — None

25. Villains — Animation

26. Bombshell Art

27. Shazam! — The Funny Pages


LAST SHOT

1. Gloria Bell — GLORIA!!!

2. Once Upon a Time … in Hollywood — Fantasy

3. Climax — I See Dead People

4. The Lighthouse — A GULLet Feast

5. The Irishman Leave the Door Open

6. SynonymKnock, Knock, Knocking on the Door

7. Our Time — The Human Animal

8. I Do Not Care If We Go Down in History as Barbarians — Strange Fruit

9. Woman at War — Climate Change vs. the Future

10. Uncut Gems Bullet Wound, Blood, Diamond, Stars

11. The Beach Bum — Floating

12. Her Smell — New Title?

13. The Laundromat Dressing Down

14. Sunset — The Trenches

15. Midsommar — Say, Cheese

16. Varda by Agnès To Dust

17. Les Misérables France

18. Chained for Life — Consent?

19. Little Women Saoirse Ronan

20. The Disappearance of My Mother Lens Cap

21. Pain and Glory Back To It

22. Mickey and the Bear Running

23. Framing John DeLorean — Who’s Responsible for Inventing These Shots?

24. Asako I & II — Settling Down

25. 3 Faces The Long and Winding Road to a Brighter Future

26. TransitThe Sopranos

27. The Farewell — Huy-Ya

28. The Chambermaid — Capitalism’s Identity-Obscuring, Humanity-Deadening Revolving Door

29. Knock Down the House New Kids in Town

30. The Wild Pear Tree Digging for Water, Despite…

31. Adam That New Jersey Skyline

32. Cassandro, the Exotico! — What’s in a Face?

33. Wild Nights with Emily Eraser, Erasure, Erase-Her

34. Too Late to Die Young Dog Running

35. Pasolini Calendar

36. Shazam! — Superman Tease

37. Replicas — Keanu, Robot in a Suit and Tie!

38. Styx Depth of Field

39. A Dog’s Journey — Heaven?

 

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