In class we researched the structure of thriller openings, looking at the four main openings:
A narrative opening with titles running through it:
A narrative opening with titles running through it opens immediately with narrative. We are introduced to characters, locations and settings of which may be important to the story.'The Shining' is a successful narrative opening as it builds suspense and sets the setting, which is remote and spooky. It attracts the audience and makes us want to watch on.
A discrete title sequence:
Discrete title sequences are separate from the film itself. They are heavily edited to create a specific effect. This is seen in 'Seven' of which is a highly successful title sequence, as it builds suspense and makes the audience suspicious. As we do not understand exactly what it is going on it makes us want to continue watching.
Titles over a blank screen:
The Film begins with titles rolling over a blank screen, usually with a sound track or sound effects before a image is introduced, and then the credits may begin to roll over it. 'Donnie Darko' is a great effective example of this, as with just music it creates suspense and mystery and makes us wonder what is going to appear. As the camera moves slowly it puts us on edge and builds up tension.
These films are heavily stylized and take a long time to produce. One example of this is in the film 'Mezrine' of which builds up suspense and tension through the use of its different shots which have been edited to create a specific effect.