Songs from the Vault – at the movies (part 3)

Avid fans will be aware that two previous posts featured some of my favourite tunes from the movies.  This third and final post on this subject just about takes me to the end of the list that I originally drew up (and kept adding to!).

For the first tune I return to Once upon a time in the West; one of my favourite films and featuring one of the greatest themes ever by the one and only Ennio Morricone.  It’s an epic tune for an epic movie.

We jump from 1968 to 2011 and the movie Drive.  A cult movie if ever there was one, Drive, based on the noirish/pulp novel of the same name by James Sallis, featured one of the best soundtracks in recent times.  The standout track is A Real Hero by College and Electric Youth.

Tom Ford’s beautiful film, A Single Man (2009), based on the 1964 short novel by Christopher Isherwood (which like Drive is worth reading), features an equally elegant soundtrack.  The original music is composed mainly by Abel Korzeniowski, who composed the music for the series Penny Dreadful and the recent thriller Nocturnal Animals.  My favourite track is Becoming George, the George of the title played by a perfectly cast Colin Firth.  When I get round to it I’ll have to learn this on the piano.

Staying in an elegant vein we move to Alberto Iglesias’s Me voy a morir de amor, from the Spanish film Lucia y el sexo (Sex and Lucia).  Google translate tells me that the former means, ‘I’m going to die of so much love’ (see what kind of stuff you can learn here!).  I’ve not seen the movie (‘yeah right’, I hear you cry!).  I first heard the tune during season three of Mad Men (whose production team worked on A Single Man) and it’s one of my go to chill out tunes.

The penultimate tune is from Brian De Palma’s classic movie Carlito’s Way (1993).  Joe Cocker’s You are so beautiful features a couple of times in the movie so it must be good!

I’m going to cheat with my final choice.  It’s the theme to the 1973 television series The Water Margin by Masaru Sato.  Sato composed the music to some of Akira Kurosawa’s greatest movies, including Yojimbo and Throne of Blood and you can hear why he was employed to do the music for the Water Margin.

When compiling these lists it’s always difficult deciding what’s in and what’s out.  Honourable mentions go to Lalo Schifrin – Dirty Harry, Bullitt, and Enter the Dragon; Herbie Hancock – Death Wish; John Powell – the Bourne movies; and Johns Barry and Williams.

I hope you’ve enjoyed my selections.