At the risk of stating the obvious, music for film and TV is very important.
Imagine a fight scene without any dramatic music, or Darth Vader emerging from the shadows without the Imperial March playing. It’s just not as exciting.
Here are some of the best geek movie soundtracks to have come out in recent years.
1. “Main Title” from Daredevil
Composer: John Paesano
Why it’s awesome: This is just a spine-chillingly awesome theme song.
In fact, people think it’s so awesome, fans have even made a 30 minute long version of it just so they can stop pressing the repeat button.
The throbbing bass line that underscores the theme song feels like the heartbeat of New York City, while the insistent string melody reminds us that Wilson Fisk is still lurking in its underbelly.
2. “Welcome to Jurassic World” from Jurassic World
Why it’s awesome: The problem with writing the score for a movie sequel — particularly if the first movie was crazy successful — is that the composer always has to incorporate established themes and motifs into the score, while putting their own stamp on it.
Giacchino did this beautifully, with lush orchestration accompanying all those aerial views of the lush forests of Isla Nublar.
The music also helped to heighten the suspense in all those important “oh shit the Indominus Rex is going to eat me, I DON’T WANNA DIE” moments in the movie.
The mark of a great movie soundtrack is that it makes you emotional just listening to it on its own, without any visual stimulus.
And when I heard the strains of John Williams’s iconic original theme song in the movie, I could feel the tears welling up in my eyes.
3. The theme song from Game of Thrones
Why it’s awesome: The now famous title sequence of the show, where the camera pans over a miniaturised clockwork version of Westeros, deserves a bold theme song with lots of ominous drumming.
Additionally, any fan of the show can tell you that if you hear “The Rains of Castamere”, it means people are gonna start dropping dead like flies.
4. “Heroes” from The Avengers: Age of Ultron
Why it’s awesome: While I did like Age of Ultron as a movie, its soundtrack was even better.
Elfman penned the main theme, “Heroes” (that awesome music that plays at the beginning during the attack on von Strucker’s base), an unmistakable battle cry that lets the audience know that the Avengers are here and kicking ass.
It really amps up the action on screen and get the audience all excited for what’s to come.
Having worked on two MCU films before, Tyler also made sure to weave in bits of the Iron Man, Thor, and Captain America themes into Ultron‘s soundtrack. Finally, we have some musical cohesion in the MCU!
5. “Manners Maketh Man” from Kingsman: The Secret Service
Why it’s awesome: The Kingsman theme is particularly clever, as it harks back to all those classic James Bond soundtracks with strident, brash brass and the frenetic pace of the strings.
Just watch the clip above and imagine it without any music. While still impressive, an action scene like that wouldn’t be half as exciting if it didn’t have Jackman’s swaggering soundtrack.
With the music swelling in the background, it’s easy for Harry Hart to prove that he’s not just another guy in a suit.
6. “Hope (Xavier’s Theme)” from X-Men: Days of Future Past
Why it’s awesome: The Professor X we see in Days of Future Past is very different from the one we last saw in First Class, and Xavier’s theme sets the stage very well for just how much the character has changed.
It tells us just how much grief and pain (and yes, hope) Xavier carries with him at all times.
Themes like this are a wonderful form of shorthand that lets us into the head of a character and helps the audience understand their motivations a bit better.
It’s especially poignant as this is the music that plays when past-Xavier meets future-Xavier in that weird psychic time travel scene, and you really get the sense that this is a key turning point for the professor.
7. “The Winter Soldier” from Captain America: The Winter Soldier
Composer: Henry Jackman
Why it’s awesome: While the soundtrack for the first Captain America movie had to sound dated (due to it being set in WWII), the Winter Soldier’s theme is the direct opposite: It’s dark, creepy, and sinister.
Jackman came up with a grating, mechanised motif that speaks volumes about Bucky’s state of mind as a tool of Hydra, and that gritty tone is carried through the rest of the soundtrack.
It’s a mark of how much Marvel loved Jackman’s work that they’ve also signed him on to score the music for Civil War.
I can only imagine how epic it will be.
Did we miss out an epic geek movie theme? Let us know in the comments!