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Music In The Movies

June 26, 2012

The other day, I heard a couple of notes of Simple Minds‘ Don’t You (Forget About Me).  Of course, I immediately remembered the final scene in The Breakfast Club, when Judd Nelson walks away from the school.  It was such a perfect match of film and song.   It got me thinking, what are some of the best and worst uses of popular music in the movies?  I say popular music to distinguish it from a musical score commissioned for a specific film (e.g., John Williams’ Star Wars or Superman themes, or  Lionel Bart‘s songs for Oliver!).

In addition to the song above, I must add Tears For Fears’ Everybody Wants to Rule The World played in the final popcorn scene in Real Genius.

There is more (hint: Kubrick) after the jump.

Perhaps bending the rules a little, we must include the iconic mix of Stanley Kubrick‘s 2001 and Johann Strauss’ The Blue Danube, and the opening credits with Richard Strauss’ Also Spracht Zarathustra.

For brutal and frightening juxtaposition, also by the same director, there is Singing in the Rain in Kubrick’s A Clockwork Orange.

On the other end of the spectrum, I think the most widely hyped, yet biggest fail was Lionel Richie’s Say You, Say Me which played after the credits started rolling in White Nights.  I remember patrons walking out of the theater pissed off because they had waited the entire movie for the song to play, and when it finally did, it was put to scrolling white letters.  Bwahahahaha

So, what are some of your favorites, or some that you thought were the most over-rated?

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5 Comments
  1. June 26, 2012 5:52 am

    Reblogged this on The Cineaste's Lament. and commented:
    And, ironically, Simple Minds didn’t even write the title track — ubiquitous 1980s producer Keith Forsey, who also worked with Psychedelic Furs, among others, did.

  2. June 26, 2012 11:18 am

    For me, it was this. Start at 1:53. NSFW

    Dawn Of The Dead Remake – End Credits by ohmygore

  3. 3Suns permalink*
    June 26, 2012 2:08 pm

    Thanks for the info, jlmicek. Didn’t know that.

    And lol at that clip, Ty!

  4. rEDChief55 permalink*
    June 27, 2012 9:00 pm

    I know you said no compositions (John Williams will always have the crown for those) but I just had to post this one from “The Natural”. I think it was composed by Randy Newman if i’m not mistaken. This is one of the best moments in all of sports movies.

    Speaking of Randy Newman, this one is a little closer to the popular music side of the spectrum.

  5. rEDChief55 permalink*
    June 27, 2012 9:03 pm

    Also, I’d throw in several moments from both Dumb and Dumber, Forrest Gump, and Back to the Future. All had excellent soundtracks that went perfectly with each respective movie, despite their drastic difference in genre

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