Music is considered one of the key elements in story-telling in movies. They can help restore and liven a dull scene anytime, although bad music have been known to play havoc over the years as well. Tonight, let us a take a journey into the Hollywood school to find the 10 Hollywood movies with the best soundtracks of all time.
10. American Beauty (1999)
The 1999 drama film, ‘American Beauty’, directed by Sam Mendes, explored romantic and paternal love, sexuality, beauty, materialism, self-liberation and redemption. One of the biggest blockbusters of the year, much appreciation was given to the film’s music, which was done by Thomas Newman, for which he was nominated for ‘Original Music Score’ at the 72nd Academy Awards. It also garnered the nomination for its soundtrack at the BRIT and Golden Globe awards and Grammy Awards. Newman’s work in this film’s music was mainly dominated by percussion instruments.
9. The Bodyguard (1992)
This film is THE movie that made what Whitney Houston is known for today and helped her establish as a major force in the music industry. Although she was the lead actor in the film as well, but it was her role as the singer that had people around the globe talking about. With music by Alan Silvestri, the soundtrack features many songs performed by Whitney Houston, like “I Will Always Love You”, “I’m Every Woman”, “Run To You” , “I Have Nothing”, among others. With sales up to 45 million copies, the soundtrack became the best-selling soundtrack of all time and was number 1 in 19 countries’ weekly charts, number 1 in 5 countries’ year-end charts and number 2 U.S. Billboard 200 Decade-end chart.
8. Finding Nemo (2003)
The 2003 animated comedy-drama adventure film, directed by Andrew Stanton is probably one of the biggest animated blockbusters of all time, but what is very under-rated is its soundtrack. The music given by Thomas Newman, helped in giving this the just the exact ambience sound it needed. It was nominated for the Academy Award for Original Music Score at the 72nd Academy Awards. It was also nominated for its music score at the Saturn Awards and the Satellite Awards
7. Finding Neverland (2004)
The 2004 American semi-biographical film about playwright J. M. Barrie, boasts of an envious soundtrack, which helps bring the audience close to the Victorian and Edwardian age. Jan A. P. Kaczmarek’s music helped the film win Academy Award for Best Original Score at the 77th Academy Awards. It was also nominated for the BAFTAs and Golden Globe for its soundtrack.
6. The Graduate (1967)
One of the early birds to hit the right chord was the 1967 comedy-drama film ‘The Graduate’ directed by Mike Nichols. The music was by Dave Grusin. The decision to include original music in the soundtrack was very unusual at the time and was seen as a bold choice. This was it, and movie soundtrack were never the same from then on. And who can forget the feel-good single ‘Mrs. Robinson’ from the movie?
5. Pulp Fiction (1994)
The 1994 black comedy crime film ‘Pulp Fiction’, which gave the world Quentin Tarantino, had more than one reason to cheer for. Apart from the fine direction, story, editing and acting performances, the movie had the right soundtrack to match up its other talent. The soundtrack is equally untraditional, consisting of nine songs from the movie, four tracks of dialogue snippets followed by a song, and three tracks of dialogue alone.
4. Saturday Night Fever (1977)
What good will this list be if it hadn’t included a movie form the decade we all love – the 1970s? The 1977 American dance film, directed by John Badham. Apart from establishing John Travolta as someone on whom almost people around the world had a crush on, the movie can always brag about its music. With 15 million copies sold, the album stayed atop the album charts for 24 straight weeks from January to July 1978 and stayed on Billboard ’s album charts for 120 weeks until March 1980. In the UK, the album spent 18 consecutive weeks at No. 1. The music was given by Barry Gibb, Maurice Gibb, Robin Gibb and David Shire. It went on to win 6 Grammys, 2 Golden Globes, 1 BAFTA and an American Music Award as well.
3. The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (2005)
The 2005 fantasy adventure film, directed by Andrew Adamson, had the music given Harry Gregson-Williams by Harry Gregson-Williams. He employed the 75-piece Hollywood Studio Symphony Orchestra, along with a 140-member choir to create the masterpiece soundtrack for the film. It was nominated for two Golden Globes for its soundtrack alone – “Best Original Score” and “Best Original Song” (for “Wunderkind”).
2. The Hours (2002)
If there was one film which deserves the award for having the right balance between story-telling and its music, it would hands down be given to the 2002 film ‘The Hours’, directed by Stephen Daldry. The music, given by Phillip Glass won the BAFTA Award for Best Film Music and was nominated for the Oscars, Golden Globes and the Grammys.
1. Titanic (1997)
Now, an epic film need an epic soundtrack? What better example of ending this list with the film that comes first to our mind whenever we think of movie soundtrack. The 1997 film ‘Titanic’, directed by James Cameron, had the music from James Horner. Selling over 30 million copies, the album topped the charts in nearly two-dozen countries. Just for its soundtrack alone, it won the three Grammy Awards for Record of the Year, Song of the Year, and Best Song Written Specifically for a Motion Picture or Television; 2 BAFTAs for Best Original Score, and Best Original Song and 2 Oscars for Best Original Dramatic Score and Best Original Song. It gave Celine Dion her signature and most famous song ever. What is ironical is the fact that Cameron did not want to use “My Heart Will Go On” (which by the way is probably the most famous movie song in the history of cinema) in the movie and was very adamant about it, but was ultimately persuaded in. And the rest, as they say, is history!