With the Golden Globes officially kicking off the 2015 awards season, we decided to spend Music Monday rounding up tunes from (or inspired by) some of the past year’s top films. Enjoy!
Who better to cover a medley of songs from the big screen adaptation of the beloved Sondheim musical “Into the Woods” than the best singer on YouTube? Thankfully, Miranda Sings knew that’s what the public would want, and so, that’s what the public got. Sondheim is notoriously difficult to sing accurately, but Miranda does beyond an adequate job with it, putting the likes of Meryl Streep and Anna Kendrick to shame.
This is a sort of serendipitous topic for Music Monday because it allows me to pitch a movie that is underrated in Big Eyes and a cover I genuinely enjoyed of the title song from the movie. The original is performed by Lana Del Rey, who I have only just started to dig on. The first time I ever encountered her was a random chance encounter on SNL, where I was like “What the hell is this crap?” Since then, I’ve come to appreciate her grim sense of the world. But more impressively, she sparked this much-covered song that has YouTube chanteuses fumbling at chords progressions. Not this little seen cover by Danelle Sandoval though. She strums the notes like she’s played them too many times before and with a sort of hollowness that perfectly encapsulates not only the vibe of the song, but the overall theme of the movie. Skip the big names in favor of this version!
I once praised Jennifer Lawrence for being the kind of young actress that wouldn’t subject us all to a dance pop album. That was before she recorded “The Hanging Tree” for The Hunger Games. I don’t blame J-Law for her totally adequate vocal work on the somber revolutionary anthem; it’s part of her character’s storyline adapted from the novels and in the context of the movie it makes for a powerful scene. I do, however, have a bone to pick with whoever remixed it into a slick snythy single for pop radio. It’s almost catchy until you realize that the lyrics aren’t really appropriate for a getting loud and crazy in the club.
Fortunately Tyler Ward and Alyson Stoner are here to set things right. Their remix is a little more radio friendly than the original but it also doesn’t completely demolish the song’s meaning and intention in pursuit of dancability.
I’ll admit, I’m a sucker for Hans Zimmer. The go-to composer for Christopher Nolan, Zimmer proved absolutely brilliant with his scoring of “Inception,” taking the theme track and slowing it down to the familiar “brrrraaaaaaahm” we’ve heard over used in media today. Despite inflicting that sound upon us, he’s responsible for some of the most iconic soundtracks today (seriously, look up his IMDB sometime, it’s nuts).
I’ll admit I haven’t seen “Interstellar” just yet. Don’t give me that look, I haven’t had the time. However, I couldn’t help myself from taking a listen to the iconic track “Mountain,” when Max Shishkin created this amazing tribute to space in cinema. It’s a combination of all the great things in life that I love: music, poetry, and the universe.
This is a bit of a stretch, but oh well. Last year the movie that left the biggest impression on me was “Gone Girl” — in large part because of Neil Patrick Harris and … that thing that happens to Neil Patrick Harris in “Gone Girl.” In that spirit, here’s NPH singing a number from the hit web series “Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog.” Because “it’s a brand new day, and the sun is high, and all the angels sing because you’re gonna die.” A sentiment that Amy Elliott-Dunne would approve of, I think.
What are your favorite movie-related songs from last year? Tell us in the comments!