It is one of the most maligned comic book films of all time. Even in the wake of Batman’s more recent triumphant dominance at the box office and on Flickchart (with his newest film being the highest-ranked so far of 2012, even out-ranking The Avengers), the aftertaste left by Joel Schumacher‘s Batman & Robin is still bitter. Only five movies rank higher (lower?) than Batman & Robin on Flickchart’s list of The Worst Superhero Films of All Time; it’s outranked on the global charts by such big budget duds as Hulk, Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer, Ghost Rider and even Superman IV: The Quest for Peace. And while people have defended Batman Forever when it was chosen as one of Flickchart’s Guilty Pleasures, they’ve trashed its sequel at the same time.
Yet, as much as people like to trash Schumacher’s Bat-films, they actually resulted in a pair of pretty great soundtrack albums. While the soundtrack for B&R bears no chart-topping hit like Seal’s “Kiss From a Rose” (partially because of the movie’s reputation?), in many ways, it’s the more interesting listen. And on a personal level, it evokes just as many memories.
When Ethan Coen and Joel Coen hired T. Bone Burnett to produce the music for their film, O Brother, Where Art Thou? perhaps no one could have foreseen that it would usher in a whole movement in Americana and bluegrass music.
That’s just what happened, though. It turned out that the art house viewers who went to see O Brother really enjoyed the “old timey” music that created so much of the film’s ambiance. Sales were through the roof; the album hit #1 on Billboard’s Top Soundtracks chart, Top Country Albums chart and even the Top 200 chart which covers all genres! The Recording Industry Association of America has certified it 8x platinum for shipment of 8 million units.
“As a director, what could one say to John Barry about the music for a James Bond film? His contribution to the success of the series has been enormous. His needs were always simple; a piano, a Moviola and not very much time.” – John Glen, quoted in The Living Daylights soundtrack CD liner notes, from an interview published in From Silents to Satellite. Read the rest of this entry »
“Source” music in a movie can be dicey. This is music that plays within the movie in such a way that we understand the characters in the scene can hear it, rather than music that plays over the film solely for our benefit. American Graffiti wasn’t the first movie to use source music effectively by any means, but perhaps no film before or since has used it as well. If for some reason you’re part of the 67% of Flickcharters who shamefully have not seen the movie, the premise is simple enough: four teenage friends spend the last night of Summer, 1962 together. The whole film spans that one night, from sundown to sunup. The various characters split off and reunite throughout the film, their individual and collective stories told across Modesto, California. Read the rest of this entry »
Sometimes I am introduced to movies in odd ways. I’ve already shared how the teaser poster to Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country is directly responsible for me becoming a Trekker, but this story is probably far less common than being swayed by a poster. For twenty years, my family owned and operated a consignment shop. Most of the items we took in and resold were clothes and household items, but every now and again a consignor would bring us entertainment. Sometime in the late 90s, we received the soundtrack album for Silverado on cassette. I think my mom priced it at $3.00. Eventually, curiosity overcame me and I bought it myself. Read the rest of this entry »