Anyone who has ever watched a movie knows how important the soundtrack is, and how it can totally make a movie. I am talking about the actual songs not the movies musical score. A movies songs can set the mood and make the movie unforgettable. Maybe it is since I grew up in the 1980’s and early 1990’s that they music from movies then resonate the most. I have chose just of few of the best soundtracks from those decades, hope you enjoy them.
1980’s – This decade is definitely memorable for many things, from music to pop culture everything was unique. We were introduced to MTV, music with synthesizers, valley girls, break dancing, the Atari, main stream heavy metal and more. The clothes and hairstyles from this decade may be dated but much of the music is still relevant and popular
Valley Girl –
This popular teenage love story starring Deborah Foreman, Nicholas Cage, Colleen Camp and Frederic Forrest was released in 1983. The most widely recognized song is probably ” I Melt With You” by Modern English, which has been sampled many times since in other movies and multiple commercials. Also well known “Love My Way” by the Psycadelic Furs. Picking my favorite song is like picking a favorite child, but if I had to it would be the haunting “Eyes Of A Stranger” from the Payolas. From Josie Cotton you get quirky songs like “Johnny Are You Queer?” and “He Could Be The One”. And “A Million Miles Away”, “Everywhere At Once” and “The Oldest Story In The World” by The Plimsouls, the band featured in the nightclub in the movie are wonderful.
Pretty In Pink –
The title track by the Psychedelic Furs right at the start of this 1980’s classic is one of many unforgettable songs from this era. This 1986 movie written by the late John Hughes touted a all star cast including Molly Ringwald, James Spader, Andrew McCarthy, Jon Cryer, Annie Potts and Harry Dean Stanton. Even featuring a song by John Lennon, Suzanne Vega and Otis Redding this diverse soundtrack is sure to have a song you remember on it. You will find well known bands like New Order, OMD and INXS. Not as widely know but still popular Echo & The Bunnymen, The Smiths and my favorites The Rave-Ups.
You might find the story and some of the dialogue of this 1984 hit movie a little cheesy but the soundtrack is some of the best from the 1980’s. This movie is packed with stars like Kevin Bacon, Lori Singer, Dianne Wiest, John Lithgow, Sarah Jessica Parker and Chris Penn. Of course everyone remembers the title song by Kenny Loggins, the soundtrack has a diverse group of artists. With songs from Sammy Hagar, Bonnie Tyler, Quiet Riot, Shalamar, Foreigner and even John Mellancamp. My choice for best is “Never” by Moving Pictures, this is the song playing when Kevin Bacon does his memorable solo dance in the abandoned barn/warehouse.
1990’s – This is the decade which we remember for the introduction of grunge, MC Hammer Pants, Beanie Babies, body piercing and the Macarena. There are also some great movie soundtracks from this decade. My top choices come from some great movies that are about coming of age in one way or another.
This 1996 movie is one of my favorites and I have watched it more times than I care to admit. Before Brad Pitt and her total world stardom Angelina Jolie starred in this movie of teenage struggles and growing up. The supporting cast includes the talented Hedy Burress, Jenny Shimizu, Peter Facinelli, Jenny Lewis, Sarah Rosenberg and Cathy Moriarty. The bands are not mainstream but all the songs compliment the movie perfectly, and once you hear them you are sure to love them. The most well know of the soundtrack is the powerful “You” by Candlebox. The movies opening song is the haunting “I Don’t Want To Think About It” by The Wild Strawberries. It also features songs by Shampoo, Filter, The Cramps and L7. My favorite is “Into Dust” by Mazzy Star, which has even been used on one of my favorite TV Shows “House”.
Reality Bites –
“Reality Bites” features amazing actors like Ethan Hawke, Winona Ryder, Janeane Garafalo, Steve Zahn, Ben Stiller, Swoosie Kurtz and even a brief cameo from Renee Zellweger. This 1994 movie follows the lives of these friends and generation X-ers trying after college graduation to make their way into the world. The movie soundtrack is loaded with hits from Crowded House, Squeeze, The Knack, Peter Frampton, Lenny Kravitz, New Order and Lisa Loeb. Out of all these my most memorable from this movie soundtrack is the romantic “All I Want Is You” by U2.
A ultra hip, cool, modern movie from 1995 about the life of High School student computer hackers. This movie also stars Angelina Jolie, her now ex-husband Johnny Lee Miller, Matthew Lillard, Fisher Stevens and Lorraine Bracco. Everything about this movie is cutting edge the fashion, the dialogue and especially the music. On the movie soundtrack you will find Prodigy, Underworld, Urban Dance Squad and The Stereo MC’s. Don’t miss the intoxicating “Voodoo People” by Prodigy one of my favorites.
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