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Rockin' Movie Soundtracks


When it came time to do the soundtrack for my feature film, I wanted to try something a little different than a traditional score. Through the help of my cousin, I connected with an indie band called Saxon Shore. Well, now that we are almost done with the mix, I am amazed how much their music has made a cohesive & rockin' score. So, this got me thinking about the cinematic quality of rock and reflect on some unforgettable band/ solo musician soundtracks.1) I can't really start this list without mentioning The Graduate. Try imagining this film without Simon & Garfunkel. 'Nuff said.2) My recent fave- Darjeeling Limited. After seeing this Wes Anderson movie on DVD last month, I don't think I have started my itunes once without playing "This Time Tomorrow" & "Strangers" by the Kinks. Seriously. 3) Curious George, soundtrack by Jack Johnson. Yeah, I know it was a kid's flick, but it was good. 4) Dead Man, soundtrack by Neil Young. Minimalist and powerful music, just like Jarmusch himself.5) Superfly, music by Curtis Mayfield. The soundtrack for this Gordon Parks Jr. film is as funky as it gets.6) Dancer in the Dark, music by Bjork. The movie may have been a bit heavy handed for my sensibilities, I have to admit the music was deliciously ambitious.7) Unnamed Jack White soundtrack. Okay, so he hasn't done one yet, but his music is so cinematic I know it'd be killer. Who knows, maybe I'll get to him first!So, those are just a few off the top of my head, and not in any particular order. If you have any faves you don't see here, add 'em to the list!


Marlo Angell 9 years, 9 months ago

Wow, multi, I agree with a lot on your list, especially O Brother Where Art Thou. I will have to revisit some of these, like Cannery Row and Donnie Darko (seem to remember this had Joy Division's Love Will Tear Us Apart, which I love) & check out some I missed, like Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence.Ronda, masterpiece or not, we should be done by fall & would love to have a Lawrence screening sometime soon after.

born_to_run 9 years, 9 months ago

Practical MagicShe's the One (Tom Petty songs)Pulp FictionReservoir DogsI Am Sam (assorted covers of Beatles songs)Magnolia (Aimee Mann songs)Dazed and Confused (70's songs)The Sopranos soundtrack (1st one, if there are more)Almost Famous (70's songs)I know I have a lot more at home in my cd soundtrack collection but this is all I can think of right now.I agree with most all of Multidisciplanary's picks.And, when ever Jack White (or The Raconteurs), or Jack Johnson make music....sign me up! I also like a few songs off the Darjeeling Limited soundtrack, of course The Graduate. I'll also have to check out the Dead Man, Superfly, and the Dancer in the Dark soundtrack. Good blog topic!

Linda Hanney 9 years, 9 months ago

The Commitments (1991) Good roadtrip music.

beatrice 9 years, 9 months ago

Multi, you forgot "Flash Gordon," with soundtrack by Queen. It is probably best that you forgot it. Not the high point of their stellar career. All time favorite is the soundtrack is from the Wim Wender's Film "Lisbon Story," by the Portuguese band Madredeus. It is simply amazing, music that touches the soul. Second, and not quite soul-touching, is "Urgh! A Music War." From the early '80s, bunch of punk bands. Just great. "Hair" has some great songs, but the Broadway cast is far better than the movie. Finally, "Buena Vista Social Club."

Ronda Miller 9 years, 9 months ago

Keep us "posted", Marlo! We will be there! Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence and All That Jazz are on my top five movies list - not many people seem familar with Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence - heart wrenching and wonderful.

stuckinthemiddle 9 years, 9 months ago

"How The West Was Won"excellent selections of Americana...

beatrice 9 years, 9 months ago

Not a big fan of Quentin Tarantino soundtracks. The music is great, but they include bits of dialog from the flick here and there and it just destroys the rhythm of the music. Couple more:Repo ManGarden State (a tad too emo, but still good)Paris, TexasHillary and JackieUn Coeur un HiverThis is Spinal TapGlad to see so many like All That Jazz. One of the greatest films ever made: fabulous story, excellent music, superb dancing, and a young Jessica Lange as Death. Fabulous.

Ronda Miller 9 years, 9 months ago

I agree that a great soundtrack often makes the movie - or certainly enhances it. Life with silent films was interesting with the piano playing dramatic music to keep things suspenseful. And when do we see your masterpiece?

tangential_reasoners_anonymous 9 years, 9 months ago

Donnie Darko ( NOT the Director's Cut )You gotta love a film that opens with Echo and the Bunnymen's"The Killing Moon."

Alia Ahmed 9 years, 9 months ago

Forrest GumpBoys on the SideAutumn in New York

Haiku_Cuckoo 9 years, 9 months ago

"Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence"*Best * Soundtrack * Ever

David Lignell 9 years, 9 months ago

The theme from Doctor Zhivago. I still see Yuri trudging through the bitter cold Russian landscape (through the wide screen shots of David Lean), making his way back to his true love, Lara.

David Lignell 9 years, 9 months ago

Marlo, don't forget to invite your CJA "fellows," who will cheer loudly and provide a standing O at the end.

Sheila Hooper White 9 years, 9 months ago

multi, great list. i can agree with a lot of those. the kids love all the shrek, probably any disney one. how about top gun, armageddon? my husband could probably list more. i'm never good at this.

Mike Blur 9 years, 9 months ago

Beatrice: gold star for you for the Repo Man mention. The coolest movie ever, and a kickbutt soundtrack to boot. This link with make you sit up and pay attention!http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9Kty9w4eW1s

labmonkey 9 years, 9 months ago

Dazed and ConfusedEven More Dazed and ConfusedThe Scorpion KingPulp FictionNatural Born Killers Dewey Cox

emmashanty 9 years, 9 months ago

Deadman (staring Johnny Depp) Music by Neil Young

emmashanty 9 years, 9 months ago

Top GunVariety of Great artists: kenny Loggins, Ry Cooder... Oh and that "Don't Worry Be Happy" Guy! Forgot his name ...one hit wonder. John Melincamp as well.

jonas 9 years, 9 months ago

The Crow had one of the best soundtracks I can remember. Not that I'd probably like it now, but my first tape ever, at the ripe age of 11, was the soundtrack to the live-action Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles movie.

born_to_run 9 years, 9 months ago

3 more that I remembered:SinglesSwingersReality Bites

stuckinthemiddle 9 years, 9 months ago

"Streets of Fire (so bad, it's good!)"the out front songs are a mixed bag but the underlying music throughout the movie is the ever wonderful and amazing Ry Cooder...which, speaking of soundtracks and Ry Cooder... "Long Riders" and "Crossroads" are a couple more... and a couple have been mentioned... "Paris, Texas" and "Buena Vista Social Club"hard to beat Ry Cooder...

Scott Drummond 9 years, 9 months ago

No Nukes - especially the Jackson Browne, Petty & Springsteen tracks.

tangential_reasoners_anonymous 9 years, 9 months ago

I bought the Animal House soundtrack, just to get a copy of Lloyd Williams' rendition of "Shout."

amazonratz 9 years, 9 months ago

Lots of good picks in the list.I just saw "Starter for 10" --lousy title, but a charming British romantic comedy (Tom Hanks also credited as a producer). Songs by The Cure, The Smiths, Kate Bush, Echo and the Bunnymen, Psychedelic Furs, etc. Even a little Motorhead. Agnostick, I love all those films too. I've played the hell out of my Valley Girl 1 CD. Donnie Darko and O, Brother are favorites, and Into the Wild had a really wonderful sound. Music can really make or break a movie. We saw the original 3:10 to Yuma on TCM the other night, and the soundtrack was so mismatched to the mood/action we couldn't finish the movie.

jaywalker 9 years, 9 months ago

Shocked and pleased to see two references to 'Streets of Fire'! There are better soundtracks to be sure, but that movie, particularly the music, is one of my favorite 'guilty pleasures.'

born_to_run 9 years, 9 months ago

I saw Starter for 10 recently, and I also liked the movie and music. I love James McAvoy. I'll have to get that soundtrack.

fu7il3 9 years, 9 months ago

No one mentioned High Fidelity, I believe, which I thought was great. Staying with movies made from Nick Hornby novels, I like About a Boy as well.

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