I’m always fascinated by how music works in movies.
Putting aside the naturally subjective nature of music appreciation, movie music often has an odd relationship to the story and images. Pulp Fiction is a great example of a homogeneous soundtrack that has almost nothing to do with the story. Marie Antoinette takes that a step further where the modern music was deliberately chosen to highlight her ‘rock-star’ status in her own time. Can’t say that one worked for me, but it was interesting.
My pet hate is when the music that tells you how to feel, but when the music gives you a more subtle push it definitely adds something.
Of course there are some movies where, without the soundtrack, you’ve got to wonder how good the film would be (Pump up the Volume and Tron:Legacy are two that come to mind). You can tell those ones when you own the soundtrack but not the movie!
Some of my favourite moments of movie music (because it’s not always about the whole soundtrack) are the title track (Chaiyya Chaiyya) of Inside Man which I think tells you to expect something a little different, the track during the hare coursing/chase scene in Snatch (Mirwais) which is – to me – just perfectly matched to the visuals, and the final track in Fight Club (Where is my mind?) which sums up the feel of the movie kind of wonderfully.
There are also just songs that you – sometimes distractingly – discover you love during a movie. My top two would be Walkie-talkie Man from Man of the House and Far Away from The Secret Life of Walter Mitty.
I also have a special soft spot for two soundtracks, where I like pretty much every song; The Saint and Garden State.
Anyone have favourites they’d like to share?