Saturday, May 18, 2013

Variations on a Theme or: This Title Should be a Melody

I need to do this last music-of-the-silver-screen post before I'll allow myself to come off my film score high. Also I started working on it a while ago, and what better way to combat insomnia than staring at a computer screen?

I'll try to leave out crossovers to what I've posted already, but some things are just that awesome. Although let's assume that any main theme that John Williams wrote would be on this list if it weren't for his very own post. Hence, you won't see Star Wars, Jaws, Jurassic Park, Indiana Jones, E.T., or Superman here.

Batman (1989)

The Dark Knight has had a myriad of theme songs (okay, maybe not that many). However, this one will always be my Batman's theme song. And Michael Keaton will always be my Batman. There's no escaping one's childhood, and Batman along with Batman Returns pretty much defined that childhood. Okay, again I exaggerate, but I still love these movies and this theme song will never be replaced for me.

And of course, let's not forget this either. Never forget this. 


To go along with Batman: The Animated Series. These two, along with Gargoyles, were my very favorite growing up, but X-Men holds a very special place in my geek heart. I couldn't be Batman, I couldn't be Goliath, but I could be Storm. And when I wasn't Storm, I was Rogue. Man, Storm really is the best... By the way, anyone else crazy excited about Brian Wood's X-Men? More so than Bryan Singer's movie?

The Great Escape

I know, I posted this in my don't-fast-forward post, but I can't write a post about theme songs without including this one. Even if you've never heard of this film, you know this song. At least that's how I see society being. I could be way off on that. 


I don't care how tired you are or how crappy of a mood you're in. You can't not smile and dance a little to this song. 

Plus, it made this possible: 

Road to Morocco

This might be pushing it just a little, but the movie's Road to Morocco and so is the song, so deal with it. 

This film, guys. Sigh... easily the best in the Road to movies (Bob Hope, Dorothy Lamour, and Bing Crosby!) and one of my favorite old comedies. This song perfectly represents the film. 


Sometimes I consider this a guilty pleasure, and sometimes I say, "No! This show was a part of me for 10 years! Be not ashamed!" That's verbatim what runs through my head. But really, 10 years. I grew up with this show. I remember watching it at a very young age because my sister did. I remember sneaking off to the TV downstairs when my mom was home to watch it because I was way too young to watch a show about six 20-somethings sleeping together and spouting off all sorts of innuendo. I remember becoming a snotty teenager and thinking, "pff, whatever, Mom! I watch what I want!" And of course, I remember the show ending the year before I graduated high school. This song just never gets old. 

Fresh Prince of Bel Air

Two observations. One, how could I not include this? Two, the quality of the music in this post has taken a very steep fall. 

Mission Impossible

Okay, getting back to the roots of what I originally thought this post would be. I'm pretty sure there have been more incarnations of this theme than actual TV/film adaptations, so I'll just use the most recent variation. Yep, still love it. 

The Muppet Show

I'm so glad they're making a comeback... 

Star Trek

Seriously, how can you not love this theme song?

I don't care which version you prefer (I honestly don't think I could choose between them). I just want everyone to like Star Trek, whatever the incarnation.

Star Trek: The Next Generation

I need to add this one too since this is the Star Trek that got me started on Star Trek. Although it may have been The Voyage Home. Or Wrath of Khan. Eh, we'll just say Star Trek is in my blood. Anyway, this was the version that was on TV around the time I started watching TV. Plus, you get Patrick Stewart's voice here.

And actually, I just looked it up and this started six months after I was born and ended when I was seven. I still remember watching it and having a crush on Riker and Wesley. Mostly Riker though (sorry, Wil). 


Boo. I couldn't embed the actual opening sequence. You'll just have to use your imagination. I would watch this with my brother, but never on my own because I was super crazy freaked out by this song. Seriously, I just couldn't handle it by myself as a kid. 

James Bond

Now, I know each Bond film has its own theme song, most of which are great, but James Bond himself has his own and it's fantastic. Perfect, in fact. If James Bond was a noise, he'd be this noise and someone snapping. And that snapping person would have one raised eyebrow. Especially at 1:07. But of course it's perfect, it's Henry Mancini. 

Back to the Future

This could almost be a John Williams creation. Maybe it's just the brass. 

Don't You Forget About Me (The Breakfast Club)

Okay, now I'm just arbitrarily italicizing things. Or are song titles italicized? 

Whoever did the music for John Hughes' movies (particularly Breakfast Club and Pretty in Pink) had a knack for compiling perfect music. Yes, it's all very 80s, but this song holds up, in my opinion. As do most of John Hughes' movies. I SAID LA, LA LA LA LAA, LA LA LA LAA, LA LA LA LA LA LA LA LA...

"Falling Slowly" (Once)

Turns out song titles are just in quotes. 

I wanted to get the actual scene from the movie for this, but turns out it's copyrighted or something. I guess the official music video will have to do. 

As a side note, if you haven't seen this movie, go watch it right now. There aren't many truly perfect films out there, but this is one of them. I'm adding the trailer here just for good measure. If it wasn't 3 AM, I'd put the movie in right now.

Singin' in the Rain

I don't care if you're a man, woman, gay, straight, bisexual, transexual, or whatever you may identify as. If you don't fall in love with Gene Kelly at least a little here, we probably aren't destined to be very good friends. I might also call you heartless. This is one of the funnest scenes to watch ever, and it's a fantastic theme song. It's a classic and with someone as classy as Gene Kelly singing, it makes it all the better. The man even makes Xanadu classier, for crying out loud! 

The Sound of Music

When I think about perfect voices, Julie Andrews is among the top. She just one of those people that you have to love and this song and Julie Andrews are connected.  

The Bridge Over the Rive Kwai

I was whistling this song before I knew this movie was a thing. Weren't we all, though? 

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