10 Great Movie Soundtrack Moments

Written by: Carla De Guzman/Monday, May 16, 2016 10:45 AM

What’s a movie without a good soundtrack? What experts in the movie business used to call a “needle drop” is now one of the most useful tools movies have to make us feel the power of the scene. We thought we would come up with a quick, fun list of movie moments that were made better for the music. In no particular order, we bring you these scenes! 
 

"These Days," Nico, The Royal Tenenbaums


The Royal Tenenbaums was arguably Wes Anderson’s most iconic film until the Grand Budapest Hotel. In this scene, Richie Tenenbaum (Luke Wilson) waits for the woman he’s in love with, his adopted sister Margot Tenenbaum (Gwyneth Paltrow) and sees her come out of the bus. It’s a simple scene, but the choice of song was a beautiful touch that conveyed Richie’s feelings without him having to move a facial muscle. 

“Don’t Stop Me Now” Queen, Shaun of the Dead

 

If there was going to be a zombie apocalypse, I would like it to be to music to be made up exclusively of Queen songs, please. In Simon Pegg and Nick Frost’s second collaboration Shaun of the Dead, they fight off hordes of zombies as the jukebox plays. The result is choreographed comedy gold in what should be a particularly scary scene—yeah the characters are in turmoil, but they kind of look like they’re having a good time!

“Paper Planes” M.I.A, Slumdog Millionaire

 

Danny Boyle’s film about triumph over poverty has a short but poignant scene in the middle. Brothers Jamal (Ayush Mahesh Khedekar) and Salim (Azharuddin Mohammed Ismail) run away to a train in India when they escape a children’s syndicate, and they learn to do everything possible to survive. The song’s beat is fun, and the scene seems lighthearted, but the crazy lengths the boys had to go to, and the conclusion of the moment cuts the light undercurrent to tell it like it is.

“I Want It That Way” The Backstreet Boys, Magic Mike XXL


Imagine if this happened to you! To convince the guys that it’s time to change up their routine, Mike (Channing Tatum) dares Richie (Joe Manganiello) to go into a mini-mart and make the cashier smile to Backstreet Boys’ I Want It That Way, of all songs. Her reaction is priceless, with the boys cheering in the background and the smile at the end makes this scene one of the best moments in the movie. 

“So Close” Jon McLaughlin, Enchanted


Disney’s real-life take on a fairytale gets a grown up upgrade in this scene from Enchanted. Giselle (Amy Adams) knows that she has to go back to Andalasia with Prince Edward (James Marsden) but they stop by the King and Queen’s Ball before they leave. Lo and behold Robert (Patrick Dempsey) and Nancy (Idina Menzel before Frozen) are there. Giselle and Robert dance, and we just know that they’re both in love. 

“Kiss Me” Sixpence None the Richer, She’s All That


She’s All That may be not be one of the highlight films of the cheesiest part of the 90s, but this scene encapsulates everything that this genre of chick flicks holds. Zack (Freddie Prinze, Jr.) waits for his sister to finish making over solitary artist Laney (Rachel Leigh Cook). The music is light and airy, and the little catch at the end is the nineties summed up. 

“Can’t Take My Eyes Off of You” Frankie Valli, 10 Things I Hate About You


This list wouldn’t be a good one unless we added this classic scene from 10 Things I Hate About You. Patrick (Heath Ledger) needs to convince Kate (Julia Stiles) to forgive him after a bad drunken night, and so decides to “humiliate” himself by singing. Instead of being humiliated, Heath sang and danced his way into every early 2000 girls' hearts. 

“Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go” Wham!, Zoolander


Bear with us here. One of the best things about Zoolander is the utter randomness that happens in the movie. When Derek (Ben Stiller) is feeling a little down about not winning Supermodel of the Year, his roommates decide to cheer him up with some orange mocha frappuccinos! Driving down in coordinated sportswear and having a little water fight to this song was one of the most hilarious parts of the movie. 

“You Don’t Own Me” Lesley Gore, First Wives Club


This scene is the ultimate #TitaGoals! After successfully hosting an evening for the benefit of their new nonprofit organziation, Annie (Diane Keaton), Brenda (Bette Midler) and Elsie (Goldie Hawn) conclude the evening with a great sing-off in their matching white outfits and dancing out of the room. It’s the coolest show of freedom from their husbands.

“Come On Eileen” Dexy’s Midnight Runners”, Perks of Being A Wallflower


For most people, Steven Chbosky’s Perks of Being A Wallflower is the ultimate hipster film, but this particular scene with Come On Eileen was so relatable. At a school dance, Charlie (Logan Lerman) is awkwardly standing by the wall and sipping his drink when this song comes on. Seniors Sam (Emma Watson) and Patrick (Ezra Miller) exclaim over how good the song is and start dancing with such wild abandon that he awkwardly shuffles towards them. We’ve all had that moment with our friends, and this light moment was made better by this cool song. 

 

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About Carla De Guzman
Carla de Guzman is the author of self-published books Cities, Marry Me Charlotte B! and We Go Together. She loves to travel, coming home to her dog Kimchi and spending her weekends having dinner with her crazy family by day. By night, she’s writer and an artist, spending her midnights at her desk. Follow her on Instagram (@somemidnights) for more!
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