The Best Scores & Soundtracks | Part 1

Howdy!

How are you doing today? I hope you’re all well and have been enjoying your week. It’s almost the weekend so you should be happy about that, if not, I still hope you have a good one anyways!

If you were a fan of my movie lists that I did last year, then you’ll be happy that I am bringing them back for a little while. I actually miss doing these posts too, as I have lots of favorites that maybe you didn’t know that I enjoyed watching on TV. As it says on the banner above, I am mixing two of my loves together with discussing the best soundtracks and scores! I will be going in alphabetical order, so I am starting with scores this week.

Here are my Top 8 Scores Ever!

Avatar (2009) James Horner

Even though I am writing this post, I have never really liked scores as much soundtracks. It actually wasn’t until Avatar that I actually really started to pay more attention to them and figured out that these composers are the heart and soul of the movies, especially with some themes, like action, horror, or sci-fi..I don’t think people realize how much the music in the background pulls you into a certain scene until later on.

For Avatar, not only was this an action-based film but it had this fantasy or otherworldly quality to it as well. So, the scores incorporates some surprises from the film like the language of the Na’vi people. It is a thrilling movie and it needed an epic collection of music to accompany it and honestly to me, there are a small handful of composers that could fit that request and James is at the front of that list. Unfortunately, he will not be the composer who does the squeal as he died in 2015. I hope they can find another composer that can honor James Horner and the next Avatar film as well!

Avengers (2012) Alan Silvestri

I will forever love the first Avengers film, it is what brought me back into the Marvel characters and made me want to branch out of the X-Men stories too. I actually hadn’t watched any of the other Avenger movies from the start of Iron Man, beforehand, so after I saw this about ten times in one week (no joke!) I wanted to learn the origin stories of the others. And I was thrilled to see Agent Coulson come back to life for the television show Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

I have grown to appreciate Alan’s work back when he worked on the Back To The Future films, but I can honestly say that every time I find out that a movie that I am watching at that moment or have seen in the past, I can still follow the story and/or the music has enhanced the experience as a whole. I think that’s what I enjoy the most. Sometimes I’ll go and listen to the score if I need something to relax my mind and picture every scene of the film as it continues on –that was both a smart and/or stupid move on my part!

Bad Boys (1995) Mark Mancina

I have been in love with the movie Bad Boys since I was seven years old, so I should know the ins and outs of it by now right? Well, strangely enough I don’t, and to prove to you how this happened is explaining my obsession of the orchestral theme of the film. I am pretty sure it is the reason why I have always loved strong symphony pieces. I think it made the movie that much more enticing for me.

The bad part of it is that I grew up with the soundtrack but only to want to hear this track; I am forever searching for the rest of the score. In 2016, I found out it was finally released online with only 3,000 copies. So, unless it has made its way to YouTube in that time gap, I will probably never ever hear the whole score without having to watch the film entirely.

Catwoman (2004) Klaus Badelt

The film Catwoman with Halle Berry wasn’t hugely popular with anybody, but honestly it is one of my favorites! I am equally a fan of the score too, I think there are some similarities with the next score I will be discussing in a minute as they use a specific artist as their muse for it. In 2004, the trio girl group of the time was Mis-Teeq and their song “Scandalous” was a massive hit on the radio. I should know, my mom and I were pretty obsessed with it! Anyways, once I realized their voices were used on the score made me very happy because I thought this was a different way to make use of an action movie. Especially one with a sexy, female lead so to hear it translate with the music was an interesting aspect to the whole thing.

Divergent (2014) Junkie XL

Divergent was like Catwoman in many ways than one. Between having a strong female lead, it also uses an unique vocalist as its voice of the album and score. Ellie Goulding has an amazing voice, I will forever love whenever she works on electronica music, mostly because it always so light and emotional. I have a real weakness for her album Halcyon and apparently so did Junkie XL as they used her song “Hanging On” many times in the film. It wasn’t fierce, but more of a brighter and happier tune for Tris and her new life.

Harry Potter and the Scorer’s Stone (1999) John Williams

As most of you know, I am a lover of the Harry Potter series, but getting into the music was a little bit more difficult for me. I think by the time I became a fan of it, the series was practically finished. For this post, I am only focusing on the first film that John Williams worked on because there were more than one composer that helped create the scores for all seven movies! 

So, I have had to work my way back to see if I would appreciate it, if I actually paid more attention, because weirdly enough I have mastered how to focus on the words and music separately! It is easier to do with headphones on, but when it comes to movies you have to do it at a slower pace so in a way, you have to really enjoy the film if you want to accomplish your goal. Honestly, find the score of iTunes or YouTube, it’s just better that way!

Titanic (1995) James Horner

Yup, I have TWO movies that feature both director James Cameron and composer James Horner on my list!

Here is another example of really amazing work on both fronts, but this was my first score where I felt the two worked incredibly well! Since Titanic was a real experience and had a very personal story–although it was fictionalized–it needed a raw and emotional score to go along with that; to not only as tribute for the victims of the real shipwreck but for the lives of Rose and Jack too! Celine Dion was an amazing choice to bring onto the project, her voice is timeless and full of emotions, she is the voice of the many souls lost to the waters of the ocean.

Tron: Legacy (2010) Daft Punk

Sometimes I am really happy I decide to go alphabetical order because when you have a late addition to the party, and it actually lands in the perfect spot, is so nice!

Tron: Legacy came out in 2010, but I don’t think I got the chance to watch it until probably a year or two afterwards. Once I was finally able to see it though, it’s been one of my favorites. I mostly enjoyed the music aspect or it–okay, and a little bit of Olivia Wilde too! What is really interesting is that it is a big movie subjected around a game, so lots of action and for once the music sound like something you’d expect to hear or at least I would! Daft Punk are the ones to create the score itself and I absolutely love it! It’s different and fun, not only that but I think it made me enjoy the film even more because the sound were exciting so it made me want to continue with it!

As many movies as I have watched the fact that I have selected a small amount of scores for this post is pretty wild! What really gets me is that I didn’t even include Hans Zimmer, and I am a really big fan of his work! don’t worry though, at the end of these movie posts, I’ve got one more trick up my sleeve that I think you will enjoy too!

So are you a bigger fan of the scores or soundtracks? do you like any of the ones I’ve mentioned above? What is your favorite score of all time?

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