I am not a movie buff. At all. Among my most cherished films: The Jungle Book, Even Stevens Movie, Paul Blart: Mall Cop. Although these are clearly amazing cinema masterpieces, they wouldn’t exactly fit in the top 100 best movies of all times.
But I know a good movie soundtrack. A lot of my favorite movies are included here because I think the topnotch soundtracks actually make me like them more. A movie soundtrack has the ability to take an average film to a superb film, in my opinion. My favorite thing is when I listen to a soundtrack, and hearing a certain song can take me back to that part of the movie and reminds me how I felt at that exact moment.
I compiled a list of my favorite movie soundtracks. Do yourself a favor and listen to them (and watch the accompanied movie).
1. Across the Universe
Nothing has ever came as close to touching my soul as much as the Across the Universe soundtrack. I have loved it since the day I saw the movie in theater in 2007 (fun fact: this is the ONLY movie I have ever seen twice in theater).
This cast’s versions of classic Beatles songs has been highly praised (I think?) and I personally have been known on multiple occasions to state I enjoy some of these versions more than the originals. I love the Beatles, everyone covers the Beatles, but I’m convinced this is the greatest group of covers. Not to mention the way they are sung in this beautiful effin’ film. Songs are best experienced first while watching the movie and crying a lot.
Favorite song: All You Need Is Love (corny pick, but that last scene is straight fire)
2. About Time
Ok. So I may or may not be biased here… but no! I’m not! Don’t try to change my opinion! About Time is the absolute cutest film to ever be written, directed, and released. Domhnall Gleeson and Rachel McAdams are the cutest people to exist. And the soundtrack works so so so well with their story in About Time. The sounds of Ben Folds, Ron Sexsmith, and Ellie Goulding are almost painstakingly charming.
Favorite song: Il Mundo – Jimmy Fontana. The only Italian song I ever want to hear again in my whole life.
3. Blues Brothers
Favorite song: Everybody Needs Somebody To Love or Jailhouse Rock – Blues Brothers
4. American Graffiti
This is an ICONIC SOUNDTRACK to go with an ICONIC FILM and there’s nothing else to say. Helloooooo 1960s! I have to thank my dad for this one, he definitely introduced my siblings and me to this compilation of the doo-wop sounds and early rock n roll tunes.
Favorite song: Love Potion No. 9 – The Clovers
5. One Tree Hill
Whatever, this isn’t a movie. But the music weaved into OTH is arguably the best part of the whole show. It really is in almost every story line of the show (or at least the first 4 seasons (the only seasons worth watching)) and it exposed me to some of my favorite bands of all time. If you don’t believe me, listen to Friends with Benefit: OTH Volume 2. Then after that, listen to The Road Trip: OTH Vol 3, and then when you’re done with that, go back and listen to One Tree Hill: OTH Vol 1.
Favorite song: this is very impossible but the song that’s stuck with me the most through years and years of listening is: Son’s Gonna Rise – Citizen Cope
6. 500 Days of Summer
I embarrassingly almost forgot about this one. While definitely not on any lists of classic soundtracks, this shit is gooooold. I remember I bought it at Target, and Jake Rasmussen and I listened to You Make My Dreams by Hall & Oates on the ride home. I was hooked on H&O after that (and also on Joseph Gordon-Levitt). But this soundtrack has introduced me to some of my favorites artists – The Smiths, Black Lips, Doves – and I am eternally grateful. I promises these songs will make you feel so many things.
Favorite song: Vagabond – Wolfmother
7. Freaky Friday
Actual gold. I may have listened to this soundtrack about 102,450 times as a youth. Even now when I listen to it, I can feel the teen angst pouring through my stereo. Only a really good soundtrack can do that. This is a collection of songs that match its movie’s vibes PERFECTLY. It even features Chad Michael Murray singing Britney Spears.
Favorite song: She is Beautiful – Andrew W.K.
8. The Spectacular Now
I am not a score lady. I am not into scores for the most part. But when I watched this movie, the score like… STUCK OUT TO ME. I kept noticing the music and how well done it was! There is a wonderful mix of original music and tracks in the film. They make you want to cry and also jump up and start dancing around your room. It’s also an incredibly touching, realistic movie.
Favorite score song: Sutter & Amy || Favorite track: Song for Zula – Phosphorescent
I’m vomiting just thinking about this soundtrack. I… I cannot even try to begin to explain the ways this soundtrack and the accompanied film has impacted my life. Elizabethtown is just the movie for me. I am pretty positive Cameron Crowe created the film with me in mind. My mother bought it on a whim in a discount bin at Blockbuster back in the day, and soon after my sister and I became OBSESSED. I used to watch this movie every Sunday. We even took a trip to Elizabethtown, KY in honor of it. I’m not exaggerating about any of this.
The music for this movie is. PERFECTION. I asked for the 2 soundtracks (because there is way too much great music in the movie for 1) for my birthday back in the day, and they have continued to be the greatest gifts I’ve ever gotten. There is some serious soul within the tracks – Elton John, Ryan Adams, My Morning Jacket (aka Ruckus), TOM PETTY, Kathleen Edwards, The Hombres… the list goes on. Possibly the most meaningful compilation of sounds to ever enter my life. IF you HAVE NOT seen Elizabethtown yet…cancel your Friday night plans and watch. These albums are pretty iconically Amy.
Favorite song: Moon River – Patty Griffin
Notable Mentions that I didn’t have as much to talk about but you should still listen to:
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind || Princess Diaries (I’m not kidding!!!) || Holes || Virgin Suicides || Parent Trap (L IS FOR THE WAY YOU LOOOOOK AT ME) || Ferris Bueller’s Day Off