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Added by Spike Marshall on 21 Aug 2011 03:51
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Chewers' 100 Best Movie Scores of the Last 25 Year

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People who added this item 2384 Average listal rating (1405 ratings) 7.1 IMDB Rating 7.3
Clint Mansell

Transcendent, dark, hopeful, mystical, and moving. It's an integral part of the film, and also plays beautifully on its own. "Death Is The Road To Awe" still moves me to tears while also pumping me up, creatively.
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People who added this item 1513 Average listal rating (1027 ratings) 6.6 IMDB Rating 7.1
Stargate (1994)
David Arnold

Before the prequels, Arnold managed to evoke Williams without being a soulless copy. A really great action score, and repurposed for a lot of trailers since. The opening overture and action finale ("Kasuf Returns") are wonderfully bombastic without being atonal or just noise.
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Howard Shore

Gotta get Howard Shore's obvious entries out of the way here. His score for the LOTR Trilogy.
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People who added this item 621 Average listal rating (395 ratings) 7.2 IMDB Rating 7.5
Ennio Morricone

The music for The Mission is flat-out amazing. Manages to sound traditionally "divine" without being cloying or cliched. And it really weaves in the tragedy of the story, too.
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Ennio Morricone
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Nick Cave and Warren Ellis

Fantastic, and helps to elevate an already classic film.

I can't hear Song for Bob without being overcome by just inate sadness.
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People who added this item 5048 Average listal rating (3331 ratings) 7.1 IMDB Rating 7.6
Danny Elfman

Considering how stiff Burton's Batman is and how much that affects what you actually see on screen I think the fact the film has any energy or vigour has to be put down to Elfman's insane, rousing, score. Perhaps it's the perfect storm of childhood nostalgia and the thunderous London Symphony production but whenever I hear the main Batman Theme or Descent into Mystery I kind of yearn for that kind of rousing, iconic, score.
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People who added this item 1391 Average listal rating (700 ratings) 7.5 IMDB Rating 7.7
Neil Young

Neil Young goes the full Eno with his six string, makin' heavenly sounds that don't belong in nature.
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People who added this item 2606 Average listal rating (1728 ratings) 6.8 IMDB Rating 7.5
Basil Poledouris

I never really clicked with this score until I was given a recent remastering on CD. Until then I'd always viewed it as a little limp in comparison to Poledouris' work on stuff such as Starship Troopers or Conan. However listening to the remaster and hearing those electronic elements which had been buried in the soundmix made the score completely pop.

It's a perfect fusion of modern and classical and despite the soundtrack album being broken into underwhelming suites the key themes are still amazing sounding. Rock Shop and Robo vs. Ed 209 in particular are really great examples of how Poledouris tried to embrace synthetic sounds and amalgamated them with his orchestra, it means that the synths feel far more natural and emotive than most 80s score.
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George Delerue

Just so beautiful and unabashedly romantic.
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People who added this item 1906 Average listal rating (1182 ratings) 7.8 IMDB Rating 8.1
Geinoh Yamashirogumi

The perfect mix of the tribal, spiritual, and the synthetic. Everything beautiful and ugly about this story, about the supposed Japanese future, is in that score. It's the literal definition of fucking EPIC. Requiem alone wipes its ass with most scores.
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People who added this item 2456 Average listal rating (1739 ratings) 7.3 IMDB Rating 7.8
Alan Silvestri.

It was between this and Kamen's DIE HARD score. McTiernan knew what he was dong when it came to picking composers.
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John Williams

A fun, light hearted movie, that is matched with a score that has the perfect blend of mischief and deceit.
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People who added this item 4862 Average listal rating (3272 ratings) 6.5 IMDB Rating 7
Jerry Goldsmith

It's glorious, with some great themes running throughout the entire soundtrack. Rousing and lush, it's about as close as Jerry is gonna get to doing a Indiana Jones type soundtrack.

Love it
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John Debney

Yes, the movie is shit, but the score is fantastic swashbuckling fun in the Korngold vein. My biggest problem with the pirates films was the lack of a score like this.
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People who added this item 111 Average listal rating (61 ratings) 7.3 IMDB Rating 7.3
Powaqqatsi (1988)
Philip Glass

Lifted so much for other films, this is still triumphant and spiritual.
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People who added this item 2245 Average listal rating (1471 ratings) 7.2 IMDB Rating 7.8
Michael Nyman

The movie's main theme, in particular, is hauntingly beautiful. It really makes you feel for Ethan Hawke's character, whose "imperfect" genetic status makes him perform that much harder to get where he wants to go. I also love that little movie and feel it's vastly underrated.
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John Powell

Powell's been the goods for a while, but the score for this went to a new level, without a doubt. No matter how many times I hear it, his track for when Hiccup and Toothless finally make the harness work gives me goosebumps straight up and down my arms.
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People who added this item 1960 Average listal rating (1299 ratings) 7.2 IMDB Rating 7.6
Terence Blanchard

Like Spike's direction, Blanchard's music helps to elevate the film from a well-done heist pic to a colourful and absorbing snapshot of a post-9/11 multicultural metropolis. I love his work.
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People who added this item 6030 Average listal rating (3902 ratings) 8.2 IMDB Rating 8.8
Inception (2010)
Hans Zimmer

Stark, powerful, & dripping with elegiac beauty. Zimmer's ingenious Edith Piaf sound manipulation & inspired recruitment of legend Johnny Marr on guitar earn this score it's place on this list.
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People who added this item 2331 Average listal rating (1509 ratings) 7.3 IMDB Rating 7.6
Graeme Revell

Not only does it stand on its own quite nicely, it also blends in perfectly with the songs that make up the OTHER soundtrack. It's worth seeking out.
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People who added this item 1607 Average listal rating (1004 ratings) 7.5 IMDB Rating 7.7
Trevor Jones

revor Jones, due to his work on Last of the Mohicans, Excalibur, Cliffhanger, and Angel Heart was probably one of my favourite composers in the 1980s and 1990s. I always really loved the unique style to his soundtracks, even if he did have a tendency to rely on existing music as something of a crutch.

His score for Dark City is kind of fascinating in that the majority of it's cues all feel like seperate facets of one singular song. In particular because the film is largely shaped by the presence of their strangers their leitmotif is pretty much the main theme to the film, and all it comes to a head in the last ten minutes when the pounding, percussive, soundtrack goes absolutely mental with 'You Have The Power'
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People who added this item 215 Average listal rating (108 ratings) 7.3 IMDB Rating 6.9
Osvaldo Golijov

Contemporary film music has generally gone down the tubes, with a lot of dependence on half-assed, synth mock-up composition. But Golijov is a real, true-blue composer, and his score for TETRO is a lovely, passionate bit of work. See also his work for YOUTH WITHOUT YOUTH, although it doesn't have the same variety as TETRO.
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People who added this item 3114 Average listal rating (2011 ratings) 7.2 IMDB Rating 7.5
Wojciech Kilar


Kilar, who made his mark in classic music alongside Penderecki and Gorecki, deserves at least one score on any such list. This score, more colorful than his work on films like THE NINTH GATE and DEATH AND THE MAIDEN, is perhaps the best representative of his film work.
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People who added this item 514 Average listal rating (353 ratings) 5.1 IMDB Rating 5.5
John Barry

The last great Bond score from John Barry. True, the score was for a rather forgettable Stallone vehicle, and not for a Bond film, but Barry's score is anything but forgettable, and is one of the better scores of his later years.
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People who added this item 1860 Average listal rating (1173 ratings) 6.5 IMDB Rating 6.8
TRON: Legacy (2010)
Daft Punk and Hans Zimmer (possibly)
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John Barry

An Englishman writes the book on the "American Frontier" with sound.
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Trevor Horn and Randy Eidelman

It's sort of a miracle this works - I don't know the details, but apparently Horn was hired first, and then for creative or financial reasons, was replaced by Eidelman. And despite their contributions being distinct. it still works and remains a hugely powerful score.
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People who added this item 7844 Average listal rating (5067 ratings) 7.2 IMDB Rating 8.1
John Williams

Williams knocks it out of the park again with a signature theme that holds up pretty well on its own, and works perfectly within the context of the film.
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Johnny Greenwood
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Elliot Goldenthal
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People who added this item 2316 Average listal rating (1562 ratings) 7.1 IMDB Rating 7.5
Jerry Goldsmith

One part thundering sci-fi sound, two parts lush, ambient glory.
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People who added this item 844 Average listal rating (540 ratings) 5.6 IMDB Rating 6
Speed Racer (2008)
Michael Giacchino

The entire score is funky, epic, soaring, jazzy, Saturday-morning cartoony, and sometimes transcendent.
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People who added this item 1608 Average listal rating (1095 ratings) 6.9 IMDB Rating 7.3
John Murphy

There is a reason this has replaced Lux Aeterna as the default "dramatic" trailer/copied sdtk music...and one of the reasons a pic from Sunshine is my Avatar.

The theme music "Sunshine (Adagio In D Minor)" has been used in various movie trailers and TV advertisements, most recently in the trailer for The Adjustment Bureau starring Matt Damon.

On February 14, 2010, "Sunshine (Adagio In D Minor)" was used in an NBC feature about speed skater Apolo Ohno during NBC coverage of the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver.

The song is used in the unaired pilot episode of Fringe.

The song is used in one variation of the trailer for the film X-Men Origins: Wolverine.

Many different arrangements of "Sunshine (Adagio in D Minor)" are used throughout the film Kick-Ass. Murphy was an additional composer for the film with much of his music making major appearances in the film (These tracks are not included on the Kick-Ass soundtrack but were later released as part of the Kick-Ass score). "I'm Kick-Ass", "Safehouse / Ambush", "Nightvision", "Strobe (Adagio in D Minor)", and "Flying Home" all contain some rendition of the theme in "Sunshine (Adagio in D Minor)" and most are devoted arrangements.

An arrangement of the Sunshine Adagio can be heard towards the last scene of the Season 1 finale of the remake of V.

The piece also appears in the fifth episode ("Wildfire") of The Walking Dead.
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Eddie Vedder

If this doesn't make you want to get up, turn off your computer, go outside, & do something with your life - you're beyond help.
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John Williams

Say whatever you want about the films: the scores were phenomenal. This was just the culmination of it all.
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People who added this item 6878 Average listal rating (4533 ratings) 7.2 IMDB Rating 8
Michael Giacchino

Such a great throwback soundtrack mixing James Bond and Superhero themes seamlessly.
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Johan Söderquist

Simple and restrained, a perfect balance of innocence and menace.

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Angelo Badalamenti
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Ry Cooder

The gorgeous end title theme, "Sanctuary":

www.youtube.com/watch?v=W5RXC-aBRgQ
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People who added this item 2920 Average listal rating (1997 ratings) 7.6 IMDB Rating 8
Star Trek (2009)
Michael Giacchino

With the extremely unenviable task of coming up with a memorable theme for a beloved franchise with at least TWO great themes, Giacchino more than succeeded here; his score manages to be both adventurous and moving.
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Kenji Kawai

Heavy, elegiac, ambient bliss. One of my favorite pieces of music from the 90s.
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Ryuichi Sakamoto

This is easily my favorite soundtrack of the last 25 years
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Jon Brion
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People who added this item 3299 Average listal rating (2276 ratings) 7.9 IMDB Rating 8.4
Jamers Horner

His work on Aliens is pretty amazing since he'd only had something like 10 days to write and record the bloody thing in 1986. Sure, he ripped off Aram Khachaturian a little bit (Williams plunders Rachmaninoff & Tchaikovsky regularly) but Horner's feat is no less impressive considering his climactic action cue has been reused repeatedly in countless action trailers over the past 20-odd years.
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People who added this item 4496 Average listal rating (2844 ratings) 8.4 IMDB Rating 8.6
Joe Hisaishi
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Clint Mansell
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Marco D'Ambrosia.
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Shirley Walker

To this day, the finest score composed for any Batman feature. The main theme alone is the perfect distillment of the character's almost supernatural thirst for vengence, along with his mythic grandeur.
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John Williams

You know it's a great score when you can immediately hum the tune and one can say the same thing about Harry Potter. To me, the score for Harry Potter is up there with John William's greats such as Star Wars, Indiana Jones, and Superman. The guy is the best and with HP, he proves he's still got it.
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The members of Chud.com's amazing messageboards create a list of their favourite scores of the last twenty five years.

All notes are by individual chewers. Original list, with youtube links, can be found here.

www.chud.com/community/t/138150/chewers-100-best-movie-scores-of-the-last-25-years-1986-2011

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