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Greatest Movie Songs Ever Written

Cornfield Chase by Hans Zimmer – Interstellar

Stunning, a piece of music that evokes so much emotion when you listen, well, for me anyway. The scene from the film is full of incredible acting and the promise of hope for those stricken so low in the face of a collapsing world. There’s a great sadness to the hope, a sense of inevitably about life. Once you’ve watched the film and re-listened to this piece of music, you can’t help but be overwhelmed by the sadness of Joseph Cooper’s (Matthew McConaughey) heart-breaking decision and sacrifice. The organ that dominates the piece is haunting and most certainly memorable. I could listen to this one on repeat for hours and have.

Foundations of Stone by Howard Shore – The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers

The opening song for the second segment of LOTR, thirty-odd seconds into the song, when the strings of the orchestra kick in, you are immediately drawn back into the incredible world JRR Tolkien created. You then get the thrill of watching Gandalf battle a Balrog in one of the most spectacular scenes of the entire twelve-odd-hours of the trilogy (extended 4k versions!).

Can’t Fight City Halloween by Michael Giacchino – The Batman

This song accompanies the best introduction to Batman in any film, TV series or comic. Robert Pattinson’s delivery of a VO speech is brilliant, and the dramatic beat of Giacchino’s song echoes the intensity of Batman’s (Robert Pattinson) words. “Fear is a tool”, and then the music builds, “they think I’m hiding in the shadows,” crescendo and finishes, “but I am the shadows.” The music cuts for ninety seconds while a gang chases and captures a man, ready to attack him, before booming, heavy footsteps echo out across the train station. Batman emerges from the shadows with the music back in accompaniment. Incredible, atmospheric and sets the tone for the entire movie.

Theme From Jurassic Park by John Williams – Jurassic Park

One of the greatest of all time, John Williams. I’ll never forget watching this film for the first time as a child and being captivated by the sheer scale and majesty of the whole thing, and this song played an enormous part in that feeling of awe. That’s the beauty of such songs. Every time I hear it (and I hear it a lot!) I get transported back to my youth, distant as it now is, and am right back to that place as a little boy watching dinosaurs roam free! Right up until they start, spoiler alert, eating everyone.

Bathroom Dance by Hildur Guonadottir – Joker

Bathroom Dance is a haunting piece of music, etched in sadness and trauma. The scene starts with the Joker running away, having murdered three people on the subway, and hiding in a public bathroom. The slow, methodical dance has an eerie and subtle madness acted out by Joaquín Phoenix in every movement. Interestingly, the score for this song was played on a special electric cello called a halldorophone – not an instrument I’d ever heard of! The result is creepy beyond measure. One of those songs that sticks with you forever.

This Is Halloween by Danny Elfman – The Nightmare Before Christmas

I mean, I could’ve picked any one of the twenty-one songs from the original motion picture soundtrack, but I went with this one. I must create a blog post based on the greatest film albums of all time. The Nightmare Before Christmas will appear. I’ve been lucky to see Danny Elfman perform his greatest hits live at the Royal Albert Hall. His stage presence and delivery were exceptional. The lyrics are unique, charming, mischievous and memorable. This also happens to be my favourite Halloween and Christmas film, all wrapped into one.

Main Title by Rachel Portman – Chocolat

The most charming song I’ve selected. A stunningly understated film, including a captivating performance from Johnny Depp in a stellar cast that includes Juliette Binoche, Judi Dench and Alfred Molina, to name a few. The main title encapsulates the playful nature and joy that the chocolate maker can invoke via their creations. A song that when you hear it you can’t help but smile and be put at ease. The opening gentle notes of the piano draw you in and never let you go.

Shawshank Prison (Stoic Theme) by Thomas Newman – The Shawshank Redemption

“I guess it comes down to a simple choice, really. Get busy living, or get busy dying.” Arguably the greatest film of all time, certainly in many people’s top ten lists. IMDB has a rating of 9.3, making it the highest-rated film on the prestigious website. The whole album is powerful and etched in sadness. This short piece is particularly poignant and has always stuck with me and features in many of my writing playlists.

Thanks for stopping by…

The beautiful thing about music, as with all art forms, is its subjectivity. What’s “good music” vs “bad music” can only truly be defined by the listener. Find enjoyment where you can, in whatever art form, and don’t let anyone ever tell you what is “good” and what is “bad” – that’s for you to decide, and no one can take that away from you, ever.

I’m pleased to note that the majority of my songs feature as the most popular songs within their respective movie soundtracks (All the titles are linked to the songs) and if it’s of interest I use Amazon Music to create writing playlists!

Happy listening.  

Bathroom Dance, Can't Fight City Halloween, Chocolat, Danny Elfman, Hans Zimmer, Hildur Guonadottir, Howard Shore, Interstellar, John Williams, Joker, jurassic park, Lord of the Rings, Michael Giacchino, music, Rachel Portman, Shawshank Prison, The Batman, The Nightmare Before Christmas, The Shawshank Redemption, The Two Towers, This is Halloween, Thomas Newman