Wednesday, December 31, 2008


Solon and I are in the car thinking about how hard it is to compile a really good soundtrack. So I pose the question: what are your top ten soundtracks? In thinking of the best from our generation, here are our favorites (in no particular order):

I Am Sam
Judgement Night
Garden State
The Crow
Romeo and Juliet
Pulp Fiction
Reservoir Dogs
The Last Time I Committed Suicide

Honorable mention:
In Good Company
8 Mile
Dirty Dancing
The Big Chill
Forest Gump
Purple Rain (Harrogate?)
A Hard Days Night
Stand By Me
The Graduate
Natural Born Killers


harrogate said...

This is an important question that Harrogate will need time to answer. But he must say, he does not think of Purple Rain as a Soundtrack, even though technically the label of course applies.

Perhaps this opens up a generic argument but that, in turn, is perhaps another discourse for another thread. Or perhaps not.

So, abzurd or not, Harrogate will not be putting Purple Rain on his top five list of the Greatest Soundtrakcs God ever allowed to come into being, even though none of the ones he outs on the list, will he consider anything near the level of Purple Rain as an album.

Damn it feels good to be a gangsta.

M said...

Being a fan of Purple Rain myself, I will have to agree with Harrogate; it isn't so much a soundtrack as it is a concert album, at least in my book. The movie, which was mediocre at best, definitely takes away from the sublime-ness that is the album.

I would add these titles to your already quite comprehensive list, Megs.

Once (if you and Solon haven't seen this movie or heard this soundtrack, do it TODAY!)
Love Actually
Almost Famous
The Lost Boys
Grosse Point Blank
Say Anything
Walk the Line

Supadiscomama said...

I would add the following:

Stealing Beauty
Office Space (Hi, Harrogate)
Boogie Nights
Crossroads (I'm not a girl, not yet a woman)--Just kidding.

harrogate said...

These also merit some considertation:

Prairie Home Companion
Clockwork Orange
American Beauty

solon said...

I must admit that the selection of Purple Rain was to have some fun with Harrogate since it IS the best album of the last twenty five years....

Good suggestions though.

I would add another: Stir of Echos. Though the movie was terrible there were some good songs

p-duck said...

Okay, P-Duck is going to mix it up a bit. These aren't exactly sound tracks full of pop music, but the musical scores composed by John Williams are now embedded in our popular culture:

Star Wars (John Williams)
ET (John Williams)
Jaws (John Williams)
Indiana Jones (John Williams)

Other additions:
O Brother Where Art Thou?
Breakfast Club

harrogate said...

Okay, Harrogate has a top five, even if people have stopped reading this thread.

His number 1 Soundtrack is the Magnolia soundtrack.. He is listening to it right now and it does everything Harrogate wants a soundtrack to do.

The soundtrack is not extricable from the Movie. One reminds Harrogate of the other. Has any movie impacted Harrogate more in the last ten years, than Magnolia? It's themes? it's performances? Verily, it's Music? The answer is no, no, no. Magnolia might indeed be Harrogate's favorite movie of all time. And the music has smoething to do with that. And so it is fitting that it would be #1

The other 4:

8 Mile
She's The One
Stealing Beauty

solon said...

Good choices, though I will disagree with you over the power and influence of Magnalia because of the Stephen King frog inspired scene at the end...Frogs? It rains frogs? Is it a "Rainy Season," which itself is a rip off of "The Lottery."

Even though the movie for me is ranked very low, it provided "Save Me" and, even better, "Wise Up," (the piano haunts me as it echos in my mind as I type)... If only Aimee Mann's version of "Voices Carry" were on the album I would consider it higher....

It is funny... I could not remember the songs from She's the One or Stealing Beauty. When we first discussed this list there were many movies I could name but I could not remember the soundtrack or even some of the songs from the soundtrack....

For example, Megs and I discussed Grosse Point Blank but I could only remember "Mirror in the Bathroom." The same for Say Anything "In Your Eyes" and The Breakfast Club "Don't You Forget About Me." This means that while the songs are good....the album falls.

harrogate said...

Well, the raining of frogs was an explicit Exodus reference. During the game show there is a brief moment where the camera captures a fan holding up the verse, and ye see the verse again on a billboard from the cop car, just before the first frog falls. And then of course when the "Whiz Kid" is bent over the Thunder Mug in the bar bathroom, he recites another Exodus verse.

One of the interesting things about Magnolia, to Harrogate, is that the movie uses the Old Testament (as well as the music!) as a reference point for exploring the role Forgiveness plays in our cultural heritage.

(Of course, King's story was likely an engagement with the Exodus plagues too, and with his portrayal of the town anyway, King, no doubt, was doffing his cap to Shirley Jackson. He did after all dedicate one of his early novels to her)

solon said...

Yes, yes. You provide a good explanation, as always...

But it still rained frogs which falls outside of the realm of possibility in the natural world unless a plane, which was carrying a load of frogs, faced problems and needed to relieve it self of its cargo.

Can we explore forgiveness without the frogs?

M said...

Sorry, Solon, but I have to point out that you yourself are an advocate of "suspending disbelief" when it comes to watching films--think about Harrogate's and Supa's comments regarding "Madagascar" and the fact that there are no lions, hippos, giraffes, or zebras at the Central Park Zoo. I believed you urged them to enjoy the movie for what it was. So, if you want to dislike "Magnolia" that's fine, but I urge you to suspend your disbelief about raining frogs. Remember, it is a movie. . . ;)

harrogate said...

Solon, two points, the second of which will seek to extend m's good point. But first, as to the believability of the action itself

Documentation abounds of
such strange meteorological phenomena occuring.

As we see from the third link, such documentation plays well with religious intellectuals who want to defend the veracity of their most cherished stories. But meteoroligists and biologists, no less than storytellers well before such current luminaries as Stephen King, P.T. Anderson, and Tom Cruise, have throughout history pondered both the veracity and the metaphysical meaning of wuch things.

As for M's point about suspension of disbelief, this is as you know the bread and butter of what many Situationers are seeking to do for a living. We wish to understand what it is within us that gives rise to such tales, particularly in terms of sustained patterns that cross cultures, timelines, and pizza delivery services.

Because in truth. The idea that "Respect the Cock" Mackey would fins it within himself to forgive his father's outrageously callous behavior. Or that the Julianne Moore character could learnt to forgive herself. Do not such ideas strain "believability" to the extent that they may as well be metaphorically likened to the raining down of frogs?

Indeed. Along the same lines, 'Twas fitting that a single, geometrically marvellous, croaking, raining frog, stopped Jimmy Gator from taking the easy way out.

Plus. The sequence with the frogs evoked both Pity and Terror. Aristotle calls that good tragedy.

solon said...

I'm sorry, Aristotle is on my side: Frogs falling from the sky do not make for good tragedy.

I know this because I asked him....

Evan Kafka disagress but he refused to provide a polite answer so I will refrain from discussing his words.

harrogate said...