Nothing sets a scene quite like the perfect song. Directors like Wes Anderson and Quentin Tarantino thrive on marrying stark imagery with unbearably cool song selections, and this pairing tends to make an emotional scene more memorable (and in some cases, instant classics). This list is by no means comprehensive, but we've attempted to collect ten of our favorite songs and the scenes they support. Feel free to add your own in the comments.
SPOILER ALERT (videos attached (if we could find them, also in some of the descriptions).
Scroll Through The Player To Listen To All The Songs On the Mixtape
1. "Making Time" - Creation (Rushmore)
It was difficult not to include too many songs from Wes Anderson films, but I felt that this song in Rushmore
was necessary. The song plays as we are introduced to Max Fischer, the president of an extraordinarily high number of high school clubs ranging anywhere from the Yellow Belt Karate Club to the Beekeeper's Society.
2. "These Days" - Nico (The Royal Tennenbaums)
Margot Tenenbaum greeting her brother to the eeriness of Nico's voice for some reason hardly even touches on the creepy incestuous relationship between the two. It is in these rare moments where a blissfully lovely song floods a scene that we can forget that dating your brother is not normal.
3. "Where is My Mind" - The Pixies (Fight Club)
The effects of the Pixies closing number in the film are colossal, taking down a metropolis of skyscrapers. Don't watch the video if you don't want the entire movie ruined for you.
4. "Maggie May" - Rod Stewart (Lords of Dogtown)
My personal favorite Heath Ledger moment is when the multi-tasker Skip drinks his whiskey, smokes his cigarettes, waxes his surfboard, and drawls along with Rod Stewart to "Maggie May."
5. "Girl, You'll Be A Woman Soon"- (Pulp Fiction)
Who else would think to put Chuck Berry loving Mia Wallace in a coma to a Neil Diamond cover than Tarrentino? Perhaps the best moment of this scene is Mia Wallace dancing and singing alone paralleled to John Travolta talking to himself.
6. "Playground Love" - Air (The Virgin Suicides)
A perfect soundtrack for this seventies inspired film. "Playground Love" provides a chilling backdrop to one of the most disturbing scenes of all time.
[A tough one to find on Youtube, for obvious reasons
7. "Stars and Sons" - Broken Social Scene (Half Nelson)
Only Ryan Gosling and Broken Social Scene could transform a crack addict into a loveable hipster.
8. "Shout" - Otis Day (Animal House)
By far the most inviting musical number is film history, when watching this scene who doesnt want to join a frat? More specifically, during 1962, at a toga party, with Otis Day singing just for you and your frat brothers?
[embedding disabled, because of course it is.
9. "Sound of Silence" - Simon And Garfunkel (The Graduate/Old School)
Recently, I've had a realization that every time I jump into a pool I start to hear "Sound of Silence." I'm not sure whether this stems from watching The Graduate
an inappropriate amount of times at a very young age or the offbeat hilariousness of Will Ferrell paying homage to the earlier film in Old School
10. "Blood" - The Middle East (It's Kind of a Funny Story)
A perfect song in a perfect scene.
[Too perfect for Youtube, apparently. Great movie, highly reccomend the whole thing!
BONUS TRACK! 11. "To Love Somebody" - Nina Simone (50/50)
In recent films, 50/50
had a short and sweet soundtrack that highlighted the films funniest, as well as it's most sentimental moments. Nina Simone covered the best of both worlds in a scene where the main character has just undergone his first chemo treatment while eating a few marijuana macaroons. Simone's melody added some much needed lightness to an otherwise serious situation.
[This is still in theaters. I give up.