Music in the Movies

Besides watching movies, I love music. I guess that is no big surprise for those who know me. I love to listen to music, I love to make music, I love to dance to music, I love to go to concerts and I love it when music is being recorded at our studio.  One genre that is hard to actually call a genre are movies that manifest around music. Movies that tell the stories of musicians, movies that are actually more like recorded rock operas or musicals..

Now there is a lot of crap in this genre which I love to watch. Dance movies like Step Up or Coyote Ugly. The feel good vibes, the standard story lines, the actually not-so-good-music that mostly dominates these movies. I can’t help myself wanting to go to every single movie in theatre.

Then there are also those movies that actually are put together well, that have great music and that have a story line which is not the common girl-and-boy-fall-in-love genre. These movies show something that is real, or might have been real. These movies appeal to your imagination, your fascination. These movies make you feel sorry for the lead characters or wish you was one of them. Well, at least, that’s what they do to me. Down here some of my favorite music movies. And I must say, some…

  1. Almost Famous (2000)
    When I watched this movie, it could never be made unseen again. The story has everything which for me is associated with music. The incredible journey of this little boy that had a lot of guts and a dream got to me. The way his life is turned upside down in a matter of weeks is both realistic as it is incredible. The character building is done with care and the actors chosen for this movie embody their characters like they have never been someone else.
  2. Still Crazy (1998)
    This movie is nothing more and nothing less than an entertaining piece about the band “strange fruit”. A bunch of musicians, all with their story of their own, all dying for that little bit of success and recognition in their own ways. I couldn’t help but feeling compassion for these men, trying to do their best at being who they wish they were.
  3. Crazy Heart (2009)
    Oh man. Jeff Bridges must be one of my favorite actors. And he is playing a musician!
  4. This Is Spinal Tap (1984)
    Spinal Tap is probably the inspiration for the Movie Still Crazy. This movie actually made me feel very uncomfortable the first time I watched it. The situations are so painful that I could feel the shame. The dreams are so big and the believes of the band is so strong. Everything a band chasing success might experience during their journey is put under a magnifying glass. All the unwritten rules are broken. Every musician should watch this movie!
  5. Anvil! The Story of Anvil (2008)
    Talking about feeling ashamed of the painful situations other get into… Talking about perseverance… Talking about real life band stories. Just as Spinal Tap and Still Crazy this film is about a band longing for success. In this case a band that actually exists. A band that actually was successful and could have been one of the biggest (metal) bands in the world. A band that inspired many… 
  6. Billy Elliot (2000)
    The story of a boy with a dream and a lot of people who judge him, a real underdog that is staying true to himself. This is probably one of the best movies made about dancing I have seen till now.
  7. Taking Woodstock (2009)
    Woodstock is a legend and will hopefully be remembered forever. This movie is an ode to a festival and the free spirits. I am not particularly fond of the camera techniques and the length of this movie, the acting didn’t really got to me either, but the story combined with weird scenes and the legendary theme of this movie make up for all of that.
  8. Walk the Line (2005)
    I am a Johnny Cash fan and this movie is put together well. This is not the movie of the year, but this is a story of rock ‘n roll. A story of the consequences of success and a story about disappointment and the harsh reality of drugs and alcohol abuse.
  9. Cabaret (1972)
    What can I say about this movie. If you don’t know it or haven’t seen it: Be ashamed of yourself! I don’t say you have to like it and I am definitely not saying this movie will make you feel good, but in my opinion this movie is of great cultural value and should actually be a part of everyone’s education.
  10. The Boat That Rocked (2009)
    This story about some free spirits trying to broadcast from their boat, while government is trying to stop them at all costs. With a great cast great dialogues, just my type of humor and a great concept, which is similar to a real life story of a Dutch radio station and their boat MV Norderney, also referred to the Veronica boat, this movie is doomed to be watched again and again and again…
  11. Repo! The Genetic Opera (2008)
    This movie does not deserves its place in this list. This movie is actually not very good. This movie impressed me and intrigued me. It fascinates me. The story is fantastic and original, the songs are a bit weird at times, the graphics are just a bit off most of the time, the production looks cheap and sloppy. To sum it up, I just loved this movie.

You might have noticed that a bunch of these films are about bands or people chasing their dreams, chasing success with their music or band. I guess being a musician myself only adds up to why these movies appeal so much to me. I recognize so many things that are shown in the movies. But that is not the only reason why these movies did make it to the list and a lot of others did not. I love movies with characters with a passion for something, who are fighting for what they want to accomplish, for what they think is right, even though I might not always agree on what they are fighting for.

Now I am very curious about the movies you feel should have been in this list…

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One Comment to “Music in the Movies”

  1. High fidelity
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