Thursday, October 29, 2009
From Moviefone. They've excluded "music documentaries, concert films, musicals or movies whose soundtracks are mostly (or entirely) scores." They also excluded some of my favorites, including Boogie Nights, Something Wild and The Wall. How dare they not consult me before making this list.
I'm only listing some of the 40. Follow the link at bottom to see the rest.
40. The Wedding Singer (1998)
Highlights: 'Somebody Kill Me' and 'Grow Old With You' by Adam Sandler, 'How Soon Is Now?' by the Smiths, 'Private Idaho' by the B-52's
Why It's a Hit: Spanning '80s pop, rock, alternative and pure cheese, it's a comprehensive, jubilant compilation spread across two volumes. But it's Sandler's two originals and the 'Rapper's Delight' medley featuring the Sugarhill Gang and Ellen Albertini Dow (Rosie) that make it worth the purchase price.
37. Quadrophenia (1979)
Highlights: 'I'm the Face' by High Numbers, 'The Real Me' by the Who
Why It's a Hit: Although it was released after 'Tommy,' this soundtrack, at its best, chronicles the glory days of Mods and rockers, when Pete Townshend and the rest of his peers were still popping pills, smashing guitars and listening to American R&B.
31. Shaft (1971)
Highlights: 'Theme From Shaft,' 'Shaft's Cab Ride' by Isaac Hayes
Why It's a Hit: We all know Richard Roundtree's Shaft is a bad mutha (shut yo mouth!), but it was the late Isaac Hayes who provided the soul power on this 15-track album that mixes "baby-making" grooves with funkier, more upbeat toe-tappers.
30. Almost Famous (2000)
Highlights: 'America' by Simon & Garfunkel, 'Tiny Dancer' by Elton John
Why It's a Hit: With classics from the Who, Led Zeppelin, Yes, Rod Stewart and David Bowie -- and, of course, fictitious Stillwater's fictitious hit 'Fever Dog' -- this album achieves what all soundtracks set out to: It takes you back through the music-filled scenes of the movie, every time you play it.
24. Mystery Train (1989)
Highlights: 'Mystery Train' by Elvis Presley, 'Memphis Train' by Rufus Thomas, 'Mystery Train' by Junior Parker
Why It's a Hit: Together with its soundtrack, Jim Jarmusch's 'Mystery Train' captures the uniquely American landscape of Memphis, a place where black and white cultures combined to create an obscure musical genre known as "rock 'n' roll."
22. Pretty in Pink (1986)
Highlights: 'If You Leave' by OMD, 'Pretty in Pink' by the Psychedelic Furs
Why It's a Hit: Based on a song of the same name, the film boasted OMD hit 'If You Leave,' and songs from '80s staples New Order ('Shellshock') and INXS ('Do Wot You Do'). Even though 'Try a Little Tenderness' never made it on the official soundtrack, Ducky's endearing lip-sync performance made some of us wish Andie ended up with him and not Blane.
20. Dirty Dancing (1987)
Highlights: 'Hey Baby' by Bruce Channel, 'Love Is Strange' by Mickey & Sylvia, '(I've Had) the Time of My Life' by Bill Medley & Jennifer Warnes
Why It's a Hit: It may have been the era of synth-pop and power ballads, but 1987 was the summer we went to Kellerman's ... and fell in love with '60s pop all over again. (C'mere, lover boy!) Even with the, um, charitable inclusion of Patrick Swayze's foray into music, for a few glorious months, this album was the one thing we couldn't get enough of.
19. The Harder They Come (1972)
Highlights: 'Pressure Drop' by the Maytals, 'Many Rivers to Cross' by Jimmy Cliff, 'Draw Your Breaks' by Scotty, 'Shanty Town' by Desmond Dekker
Why It's a Hit: Though the UK was already enjoying an influx of Jamaican culture at the time, this soundtrack and film were one of the first introductions of reggae to the U.S., and as such it's still a beloved favorite amongst fans and tourists of the genre. It might be the most enjoyable end-to-end listen on this list.
17. The Big Chill (1983)
Highlights: 'What's Goin' On' by Marvin Gaye, 'My Girl' by Smokey Robinson, 'A Whiter Shade of Pale' by Procol Harum
Why It's a Hit: The definitive collection of Motown musts, this album rocks everything from the Temptations to the Rascals to Three Dog Night and Aretha Franklin -- and it hit No. 17 on the 1983 Billboard 200 as a result. If ever we gather with old college buddies in a posh winter house after a funeral, this is the soundtrack we're bringing.
14. Rushmore (1998)
Highlights: 'Making Time' by the Creation, 'Ooh La La' by the Faces, 'Nothing in This World Can Stop Me Worryin' 'Bout That Girl' by the Kinks
Why It's a Hit: Wes Anderson always seems to do a good job of digging up mod classics that radio forgot, and this soundtrack is no exception. The standout may be the track by the Creation, the band first credited for playing a guitar with a violin bow (later popularized by Jimmy Page). Keep that in mind for when Alex Trebek calls.
12. Dazed and Confused (1993)
Highlights: 'School's Out' by Alice Cooper, 'Love Hurts' by Nazareth, 'Cherry Bomb' by the Runaways
Why It's a Hit: Director Richard Linklater's paean to teens embarking on their freedom from the daily grind (i.e., school) is a bicentennial blast from the past, and the songs he chose to accompany their adventures perfectly capture the highs of last day ('School's Out') to the lows -- the pangs of teen heartbreak ('Love Hurts').
8. Garden State (2004)
Highlights: 'New Slang' by the Shins, 'Such Great Heights' by Iron & Wine
Why It's a Hit: Zach Braff felt so strongly about the songs that would work in his writer-director debut that he actually wrote them into the screenplay. The result is a melancholic, hopeful masterpiece of a soundtrack that helped make indie music mainstream, propelled the Shins to stardom and won Braff a Grammy for Best Compilation for a Motion Picture. Not bad for a Jersey boy.
6. A Hard Day's Night (1964)
Highlights: 'A Hard Day's Night,' 'Can't Buy Me Love,' 'If I Fell' and 'I Should Have Known Better' by the Beatles
Why It's a Hit: So iconic is this album, many people forget that it's a soundtrack at all. But indeed, all eight original songs (plus four instrumentals) on the U.S. version are from the Beatles' first movie, and every single one remains a classic, from that memorable opening chord to the wistful harmonies of 'If I Fell.'
3. Purple Rain (1984)
Highlights: 'When Doves Cry,' 'I Would Die 4 U,' 'Purple Rain,' 'Let's Go Crazy' by Prince
Why It's a Hit: It was Prince's brilliant film debut -- and we're not referring to his acting. Though the movie was a hit, it was nowhere near the sensation of the accompanying album. At once funky, sexy and totally rockin', the LP, billed to Prince and the Revolution (except 'Take Me With U,' which included Apollonia), was nothing short of revolutionary and regularly ranks as one of the best albums of all time.
2. Saturday Night Fever (1977)
Highlights: 'Staying Alive' by the Bee Gees, 'Disco Inferno' by the Trammps
Why It's a Hit: This epic collection defined the Bee Gees as they ushered in the disco era, and it quickly became the best-selling album of all time, only giving up the throne to Michael Jackson's 'Thriller' in 1984. Three decades and hits like 'Staying Alive,' 'Night Fever' and 'Disco Inferno' later, the double LP remains a commercial goldmine.
See the rest here at Moviefone.com
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