David O. Russell / Warner Bros. 

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George Clooney leads an all-star cast (Mark Wahlberg, Ice Cube) in David O. Russell’s Gulf War action-black comedy Three Kings. The war has ended, and four American troops receive word that there is a stash of gold nearby that Saddam Hussein stole from Kuwait. When the soldiers locate the cache, they come across a group of Iraqi prisoners, and witness the harsh realities of war. Faced with an arduous decision, the foursome decides to free the prisoners. Consequently, a firefight breaks out, and one American solider is taken hostage, while a rebel group rescues and harbors the remaining three. Finding common ground, the American soldiers agree to help the rebels abscond from the grips of the Iranian dictatorship, after they rescue their imprisoned comrade.

Kyle Cooper designed the opening credits and main title for Warner Brothers’ 1999 critical and box office success while at Imaginary Forces.

Questioning ones own morality is one of the cardinal themes in the story. Substantiated by Cooper’s choice apropos the timing of the main title reveal, the pivotal theme is conveyed to the audience within the first minute of the film. Mark Wahlberg’s character Troy is rejoiced by his fellow troops after shooting and killing an enemy combatant. Troy’s response manifests his internal struggle, from which the film freeze-frames and the title animates on. The original typography designed by Cooper and his team at the head of the film unambiguously establishes the setting, from here, the feature lifts off.

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