The 20 Greatest Movie Soundtracks You Need In Your Collection
The 20 Greatest Movie Soundtracks You Need In Your Collection
Music has always played an important role in the movies we love. A film’s score can help advance a big screen story by establishing a setting, creating a mood or expressing emotions we’re supposed to feel as an audience. And sometimes when those songs are combined together and released as a soundtrack for our listening pleasure, they make for one epic mixtape!
Whether it’s a combination of tracks that capture special moment in time, an all-star line-up of artists, or the emotional essence of a film that we hold dear, we’ve been graced with some seriously incredible soundtracks over the years.
Here’s our look at the 20 greatest movie soundtracks that you need to have in your music collection. If you haven’t given them a listen yet, throw on your earphones and let’s do this!
Wes Anderson’s Rushmore soundtrack is just as solid as the movie. It plays like a cool kid’s mixtape, combining great tunes by the likes of John Lennon, The Who, Cat Stevens and Faces. And to think Anderson was originally going to make it full of songs by The Kinks. Yikes.
Tron: Legacy (2010)
Everyone loves Daft Punk. The masked duo rarely releases new albums, so when they agreed to score Tron: Legacy, they essentially made a new album for the movie. They also happened to use a 100-piece orchestra to record it. It’s awesome!
Guardians of the Galaxy (2014)
Adorably dubbed Star-Lord’s Awesome Mix Vol. 1, 2014’s Guardians of the Galaxy soundtrack is a feel good masterpiece. It’s full of yacht rock and classic rock tunes that were all featured in the movie. This soundtrack was so popular that it spent 11 weeks at number one on the Billboard charts and sold over a million copies.
Romeo And Juliette (1996)
We all loved this angsty, dark soundtrack from when we were kids. It was badass and so mid-90s. Featuring killer songs by Radiohead, Garbage and The Cardigans, it matched the tone of the film perfectly. Poor Leo and Claire.
The Great Gatsby (2013)
Speaking of killer soundtracks to movies starring Leonardo DiCaprio, The Great Gatsby can’t be forgotten. The soundtrack was packed full of solid tracks and cool covers by modern artists like Jack White, Beyonce, Fergie, Jay Z, The xx and Lana Del Rey. Oh yea, and Jay Z executive produced it. Obviously it’s great.
Nick and Nora’s Infinite Playlist (2008)
This soundtrack plays like the perfect mixtape for young hipsters falling in love. Just like Nick and Nora. It’s a great mix of cool modern indie rock from the film’s time period and each song was integral to the movie plot.
Saturday Night Fever (1977)
The Saturday Night Fever soundtrack literally defined disco. This album plays as genre’s greatest hits, featuring The BeeGees, Kool and the Gang, KC and the Sunshine Band and The Trammps. It has sold over 15 million copies, and is the second best selling soundtrack of all time. Warning, it’s going to make you want to boogie.
Boogie Nights (1997)
And while we’re on the subject of boogying, The Boogie Nights soundtrack absolutely deserves a spot amongst the best movie soundtracks of all time. It’s basically a nostalgic tribute to the best soft rock of the late ‘70s and early ‘80s.
Pretty In Pink (1986)
Pretty In Pink isn’t just the greatest teen movie soundtrack of the ‘80s, it might be the greatest teen movie soundtrack period. It features a perfect mix of catchy, fun ‘80s cult rock tracks by the likes of The Clash, The Smith, OMD, New Order and Echo and the Bunnymen. It still holds up.
Empire Records (1995)
There’s a good chance more people have heard the Empire Records soundtrack than seen the popular cult movie. The soundtrack, featuring Edwyn Collins, The Cranberries, Cracker and The Gin Blossoms plays like a hip time capsule of early ‘90s indie rock.
The Social Network (2010)
Just like anything made by Nine Inch Nails main man Trent Reznor, The Social Network soundtrack is an artistic masterpiece. It’s an epic score of ambient, moody landscapes. There’s a reason the soundtrack won a Golden Globe and an Oscar.
The Breakfast Club (1985)
Is there a soundtrack that epitomizes the ‘80s better than The Breakfast Club? Absolutely not. This album is iconic.
Drive was heavily dependent on this haunting synthy soundtrack to set its dark, brooding mood. Throwing on these songs immediately takes listeners back into the movie with Ryan Gosling’s character. It’s powerfully intense.
Aside from being a 14-song mixtape of pure stoner rock and techno bliss, the Trainspotting soundtrack’s songs blend perfectly into the film’s druggy narrative. It’s a hip, masterpiece of a score.
Grosse Pointe Blank (1997)
Late rock legend and The Clash frontman Joe Strummer put this soundtrack together for the hilarious John Cusack assassin flick. This album is just dripping with cool. It combines the best of ‘80s punk, non-embarrassing ska, rock and new wave. It’s the perfect soundtrack to throw on during a party.
Purple Rain (1984)
Purple Rain isn’t just an incredible movie soundtrack, it’s regarded as one of the greatest albums of all time. It’s full of glorious pop, funk and R&B and features hits like “Purple Rain,” “When Doves Cry” and “The Beautiful Ones.” Brilliant.
If you’re looking for some sweet ‘70s funky soul, Curtis Mayfield’s socially conscious Superfly soundtrack is the real deal. This album is a classic and has been sampled by countless modern artists like Ice T and Eminem.
Pulp Fiction (1994)
The Pulp Fiction soundtrack is like a Quinton Tarantino oldies mixtape chalk full of classic tunes. We’re talking Chuck Berry, Dick Dale, Dusty Springfield and more. These songs helped shape the setting for Tarantino’s pack of wacky characters to come to life.
Forget about Help! being just a movie soundtrack. This was the Beatles’ album that spawned "You've Got to Hide Your Love Away," "Yesterday," "Ticket To Ride," “I’ve Just Seen A Face” and of course “Help!” all on one LP! Unreal release.
Garden State (2004)
Zach Braff hand selected each song on the Garden State soundtrack to perfectly compliment the important scenes from his coming of age cult film. The songs play a major part in telling the film’s story and set the tone emotionally. The acoustic and downbeat songs gel perfectly together. Braff even won a Grammy for this special mixtape.