Movie Music Moments


Empire Magazine asked Cameron Crowe to list his 10 favorite movie music scenes and of course he comes up with 36! I thought it was an interesting concept so off the top of my head I developed my own list. With a little prompting this could be radically altered (i.e. I probably need a Scorsese film in there) so I’d love to hear of your favorite movie music moments in the comments.

It’s All Over Now Baby BlueDont Look Back. Donovan is in a London Hotel with Dylan and plays him a new song which has some maudlin Elizabethan lyrics set to a Dylan tune. Dylan pulls out a guitar and says I’ve got a new one too and proceeds to play It’s All Over Now. It’s an amazing version and right then and there Donovan knew he was never going to be the “Next Dylan.”

In DreamsBlue Velvet. Who knew such a beautiful song could be made so creepy.

Where is My MindFight Club. Crowe has this one too. The Pixies song plays as the buildings fall in the last scene. It’s a perfect song to a perfect ending of a perfect movie.

Wise-UpMagnolia. All the cast members sing parts of this song which could have easily been seen as a stunt and taken the viewer completely out of the movie. Instead it links the characters together. My mouth drops every time I see this scene.

Mad WorldDonnie Darko. Played over a montage. Fuels the overall mood of a very moody movie.

CelebrationMarie Antoinette. Much like Mad World above. This is a mood setter.

Falling SlowlyOnce. Another one that Crowe mentions. You truly see the two characters fall in love during this song, and the look on their faces is priceless.

Tiny DancerAlmost Famous. Band hates each other, brooding on the bus. Someone starts to sing Tiny Dancer, someone joins in, then another, then another. Pretty soon the whole bus is singing and everyone forgets about their problems.

Don’t Stop Me NowShaun of the Dead. Can you think of a better song to fight zombies to?

My Back PagesMasked and Anonymous. A Japanese version of the Dylan classic. The song plays over the opening credits while scenes of poverty and urban decay fill the screen.

What do you think? Give me a list in the comments.


Fight Club was a great movie.. Crazy ending.. I know a lot of people didn't see that coming..

Fight Club was a great movie.. Crazy ending.. I know a lot of people didn't see that coming..

That Fight Club ending was crazy and could never be filmed again after 9-11.

Good topic. It really is very thought provoking. A lot of times you will like the scene in question more only because you like the song. For example, Sigur Ros's "Staralfur" in The Life Aquatic was perfect as they sat in that sub hunting the shark. I also liked the use of Sufjan Steven's "Chicago" in Little Miss Sunshine as they sped across the country in their crappy van. It is a good road trip song.

However, as I said, I like those songs so did I like the scene because of that, even though it might have been a crappy scene in general?

By the way, "Falling Slowly" in Once was very, very good. The song is so much better in that scene than just hearing it on the radio. All the songs on that soundtrack are better in the context of the film.

Again, thought provoking topic. I'll have to see if I can come up with some more.

Good points Shane. I looked at as a song that really contributed to the movie, was integral to the scene, almost made the movie what it was, regardless if you like the song or not.

I almost included Heat of the Moment by Asia in 40 Year Old Virgin. I really don't like that song, but it was perfect for that point in the movie.

That reminds me of "The Promise" by When in Rome at the end of Napoleon Dynamite. Perfect use of an obscure 80s one-hit wonder.

I like the way Martin Scorsese gives new life to well known pop songs by inserting them into his films.
Check out the Dylan & the Band version of Like a Rolling Stone in his section of New York Stories for a prime example. And who would have thought to use the Beach Boy's Sail on Sailor in The Departed? Genius, I tell you ...

This is good, pal. Don't have time to read the Crowe article right now, but I'll get to it.

Three that popped into my head:

1. The Stooges "Search and Destroy" In The Life Aquatic, when Bill Murray attacks the pirates. (Yeah, like there are pirates...)

2. So many classic Scorsese moments to choose from:

Ray Liotta's paranoia set to Nilsson's "Jump Into the Fire" in Goodfellas; or the opening scene of Mean Streets (where we first glimpse the "mooks": Kietel and De Niro) set to the Stones "Jumpin' Jack Flash".

3. When Link Wray's "Rumble" jump-started QT's Pulp Fiction.

I'm sure more will pop into my head. (A special post could be made about all the wonderful songs David Chase used for The Sopranos during their run.)

Great topic Free. Of course I am drawing a total blank on movie scenes. Two of my favorite movies, however, that make great use of music are Rushmore and Wonder Boys.

There is a great scene in Rushmore in which Bill Murray is kind of freaking out while The Who's "A Quick One While He's Away" plays. It's my favorite scene in the movie.

I also like the use of some old Dylan tunes in Wonder Boys such as "Shooting Star" and "Buckets of Rain."

Lastly, I saw a trailer for the new movie version of "Where the Wild Things Are," my favorite book as a child. It's set to the Arcade Fire's "Wake Up," which is pretty cool. I hope it's a good movie because I love that book.

I almost include A Quick One from Rushmore. Also from Goodfellows the long tracking scene where Ray Liotta and his date go threw the back door of the restaurant and kitchen during the song he kissed me is pure gold.

So many classic Scorsese moments to choose from...

I was listening to the director's commentary on 'Fight Club' and he pointed out how the entire soundtrack set up that Pixies song. The whole movie is set to the Dust Brothers' techno/world/ambient stuff, which makes the guitar of the 'Where is My Mind' really stand out and draws the attention of the viewer.

Interesting stuff. Love the idea, free, I'll have to come up with a list.

Cool topic. Two off the top of my head:

I like the "Tracks of My Tears" scene in Platoon.

Dylan's "The Man In Me" during the dream sequences in The Big Lebowski.

"Falling Slowly" is a great song. It's cool living here, because I can watch "Once" and say "Hey, I've been there."

Whenever "Don't Stop Me Now" comes on at the bar, we all pretend to hit zombies with pool cues to the beat. Yeah, we're dorks.

nice post dude, thats a great song the clip is very nice too..

Thanks for the sensible critique. Me & my neighbor were just preparing to do a little research on this. We got a grab a book from our area library but I think I learned more from this post. I am very glad to see such fantastic info being shared freely out there.


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This page contains a single entry by Freealonzo published on May 19, 2009 9:02 AM.

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