"One of the most iconic title sequences ever made. A Fistful of Dollars (original Italian title: Per un Pugno di Dollari) was the first spaghetti western to gain widespread international recognition. After the film's initial release in Italy, it took three years until the film was released in the US, but Sergio Leone's revolutionary take on the western would ultimately change the genre altogether, as well as catapult the careers of Leone, main actor Clint Eastwood, and composer Ennio Morricone, whose enigmatic score still resonates today.
A Fistful of Dollars (1964) was the first film in Sergio Leone's 'Dollars' trilogy that also includes For A Few Dollars More (1965) and The Good, The Bad and The Ugly (1966). The opening title sequences for these three films were made by Italian graphic designer Iginio Lardani. Unlike Leone, Eastwood, and Morricone, Lardani did not win a one–way ticket to stardom. The designer who created one of the most iconic film title title sequences of the 20th Century, and whose bold, graphic, pop art–inspired main titles continue to inspire designers, animators and filmmakers today (see for instance Paul Donnellon's opening titles for Smokin' Aces), remains relatively unknown outside the Italian film industry.
Iginio Lardani passed away in 1986, but his son Alberto Lardani told me this anecdote: 'Sergio Leone's reaction when he first saw the title sequence for 'Per un Pugno di Dollari' was of great gratitude. Not only for its extraordinary iconic impact but also because it was designed for free.'"
(Remco Vlaanderen, 14 July 2011, WatchTheTitles)
"A trio of future Kiwi screen stars smoke, smoulder, steal – and worse – in Scott Reynolds' serpentine short noir. Kane (Marton Csokas) and his Zambesi–clad woman on the side (Danielle Cormack) set about ripping off Kane's rich wife (Jennifer Ward–Lealand) with bloody results. Writer/director Scott Reynolds and longtime partner in crime, cinematographer Simon Raby, serve notice of their talents – and inspirations – with heady lighting, deliberately shonky back projection, and opening titles right out of Hitchcock [Saul Bass inspired]. Muso Greg Johnson supplies the horns."
(NZ On Screen)
Fig.1 Scott Reynolds/Zee Films (1994), "A Game with No Rules" Aotearoa New Zealand, 35mm 16 minutes.
"Cine–Excess VI was entitled 'Transglobal Excess: The Art and Atrocity of Cult Adaptation' and took place at the Odeon Covent Garden and the Italian Cultural Institute, London between the 24–26th May 2012. The event focused on global adaptations of cult narratives, genres, themes and icons across a broad range of media and fiction formats. From pulp novels into pulp horror films and recent big budget blockbuster remakes of marginal midnight movies, to nationally defined interpretations of the pre–established extreme, the cult image remains a fascinating index of adaptation, whose wide array of remakes, renditions and realisations frequently reveals fascinating issues of nation and narrative, as well cultural, regional and historical distinction."
"Clark Collins definition of Repo Man as an 'hilarious genre–hopping indictment of consumerism in which, for example, all cans of drink in the supermarket are labelled simply 'drink'' (Collins 2001: 36)"
Nicholas Rombes (2005). New Punk Cinema, Edinburgh University Press.
"Epic story of a mysterious stranger with a harmonica who joins forces with a notorious desperado to protect a beautiful widow from a ruthless assassin working for the railroad."
Fig.1 Sergio Leone (1968). "Once Upon a Time in the West"
[See from this point for a good example of film flashback to explain backstory, where Charles Bronson's character reveals a moment from his past. The exposition provides a direct way of adding context and meaning to current situation.]