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50 Greatest Soundtracks Poll- Rings tops list... again!

Discussion in 'Movies' started by Steve Christou, Aug 25, 2003.

  1. Steve Christou

    Steve Christou Long Member

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    A poll by 44,000 Classic FM radio listeners has voted Howard Shore's Lord of the Rings score, best movie soundtrack of all time, for the 2nd year running. Here is the top 50.

    01 The Lord of the Rings, Howard Shore
    02 Gladiator, Hans Zimmer/Lisa Gerrard
    03 Star Wars, John Williams
    04 Schindler’s List, John Williams
    05 Out of Africa, John Barry/Mozart
    06 The Mission, Ennio Morricone
    07 Titanic, James Horner
    08 Dances with Wolves, John Barry
    09 Lawrence of Arabia, Maurice Jarre
    10 Jurassic Park, John Williams.

    11 Gone with the Wind, Max Steiner
    12 Harry Potter, John Williams
    13 The Piano, Michael Nyman
    14 The Magnificent Seven, Elmer Bernstein
    15 Brief Encounter, Sergei Rachmaninov
    16 Doctor Zhivago, Maurice Jarre
    17 West Side Story, Leonard Bernstein
    18 Amadeus, Mozart
    19 Saving Private Ryan, John Williams
    20 Braveheart, James Horner.

    21 Blade Runner, Vangelis
    22 Last of the Mohicans, Trevor Jones
    23 Chariots of Fire, Vangelis
    24 Indiana Jones, John Williams
    25 The Godfather, Nino Rota
    26 The Big Country, Jerome Moross
    27 Death in Venice, Gustav Mahler
    28 2001: A Space Odyssey, Richard Strauss
    29 ET, John Williams
    30 The Great Escape, Elmer Bernstein.

    31 Fantasia, Various
    32 Dangerous Moonlight (Warsaw Concerto), Richard Adinsell
    33 The English Patient, Gabriel Yared
    34 The World is Not Enough, David Arnold
    35 The Hours, Philip Glass
    36 Once Upon a Time in The West, Ennio Morricone
    37 The Shawshank Redemption, Mozart/Thomas Newman
    38 The Third Man, Anton Karas
    39 Platoon, Samuel Barber
    40 The Dambusters, Eric Coates.

    41 The Deer Hunter, Stanley Myers
    42 The Good the Bad and the Ugly, Ennio Morricone
    43 Star Trek, Jerry Goldsmith
    44 Once Upon A Time in America, Ennio Morricone
    45 Sense and Sensibility, Patrick Doyle
    46 Edward Scissorhands, Danny Elfman
    47 Ben Hur, Miklos Rosza
    48 Amelie, Yann Tiersen
    49 1492: Conquest of Paradise, Vangelis
    50 Much Ado about Nothing, Patrick Doyle.

    Here we go again, lots of favorites in the list, nice to see good ol' Wolfgang Amadeus in there somewhere.[​IMG]
    John Williams famous Jaws theme is missing again, oh for shame!
    Wait a minute where the hell is the great Bernard Herrmann on the list? Gaah! That's it I'm outta here [slams door].
     
  2. Kirk Tsai

    Kirk Tsai Screenwriter

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    I remember when they announced last year's poll, as well as the HTF reaction thread. I would not shed a tear if they decided to never host this poll again.


    To put these lists to shame (remember that EW soundtrack list?), I wish an organization such as the Film Music Society, or even Film Score Monthly, would assemble an "essentials" type of list for the general movie/music audience. No doubt it would be more comprehensive and well balanced, as well as being a better acknowledgment to the unappreciated art of film scoring. Imagine anyone writing about The Adventures of Robin Hood and not mentioning Korngold's score. Impossible? Not so even in the distinguished hands of Mr. Ebert.
     
  3. Daniel J.S.

    Daniel J.S. Stunt Coordinator

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    Ugh, there is no way Shore's score is better than Prokofiev's Alexander Nevsky score. It's one of the only film scores in the concert repertoire (thanks to the cantata Prokofiev derived from it), which should tell you something. That it's not even on the list, let alone it's rightful spot as #1, is a farce.

    EDIT
    I just noticed that this was an FM radio poll; no wonder the voters were completely ignorant of the Prokofiev score. I agree with the above post: these lists should be left to the experts.
     
  4. Eric Peterson

    Eric Peterson Cinematographer

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    What a freakin' joke? Who did they poll for this?

    Bernard Herrmann (Arguably the greatest film composer of all-time) is completely absent. I consider myself a big fan of music scores and especially classic movies, but there's only a handful of these that I own or ever intend on owning.

    A small sampling Hermann's genius scores.
    • Citizen Kane
    • Magnificent Ambersons
    • Devil & Daniel Webster
    • Vertigo
    • North By Northwest
    • Psycho
    • The Day the Earth Stood Still
    • The 3 Worlds of Gulliver
    • Fahrenheit 451
    • Taxi Driver
     
  5. george kaplan

    george kaplan Executive Producer

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    [​IMG]

    I too noticed the complete absence of Hermann. Pathetic. Yes there are some good soundtracks on there, but the top 50 of all time. Not even close.
     
  6. Lew Crippen

    Lew Crippen Executive Producer

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    I commented last time.

    It is pretty clear that polling the same people will lead to the same results.
     
  7. DeeF

    DeeF Screenwriter

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    I suppose the moniker "soundtrack" is pretty loaded. It could refer to the score, or to the score plus sound effects, or these plus the soundstage, or perhaps it's referring mostly to how the movie's sound has been transferred to a separate recording, and how well it works in its new medium, or how well it sounds over FM, or... you see the point.

    Many great scores are missing, including those of Herrmann, but I don't see Aaron Copland there either, arguably the greatest U.S. composer of the 20th Century. At least 2 of his scores are defensively great, The Red Pony and The Heiress.

    Speaking of great scores, anybody note the music/soundstage of the recent movie Punch-Drunk Love? There was never a better use of music in a movie.
     
  8. Steve Christou

    Steve Christou Long Member

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  9. Walter Kittel

    Walter Kittel Producer

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    It depends upon the point of the list, doesn't it? Since it is a poll, obviously it is going to reflect the tastes and experience of the respondents. An expert's list would be more representative of the 'Greatest Soundtracks' and would provide those who wish to expand their horizons with a better list of candidates with which to acquaint themselves. ( If that is the point of the list. [​IMG] )

    I'm not surprised by the list and its preponderence of 'recent' films, relatively speaking. There are some good choices, but in addition to Korngold and Hermann, I would have liked to have seen at least one selection from Franz Waxman. ( Nice to see Steiner and Moross on the list though. )

    - Walter.
     
  10. Lou Sytsma

    Lou Sytsma Producer

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    Still one would think the listeners of a Classic FM station would be more discerning that if the poll had been done at a pop or rock station.
     
  11. Rob Gillespie

    Rob Gillespie Producer

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    The top of the list are all the big sweeping 'epic' sounding scores. The ones that whisk you up and pound you with grandeur.

    I love 'em, and I have no qualms about admitting it. Shore's Fellowship was the single best orchestral score I'd heard in the last twenty years.

     
  12. Steve Christou

    Steve Christou Long Member

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    Well guys it could have gone the other way and Top Gun, Beverly Hills Cop etc pop soundtracks would have made the list instead, at least these are for the most part rich orchestral scores.

    Howard Shore's incredible music for Lord of the Rings is the best film score in ages IMO, and I groaned when I first heard he was up for the job. :b LOTR would be somewhere in my top 20 all time faves for sure.
     
  13. Rob Gillespie

    Rob Gillespie Producer

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  14. Holadem

    Holadem Lead Actor

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    It warms my heart that at least this time, the tired old teenager and pop culture bashing arguments won't hold.

    Perhaps the FOTR score is (gasp!) a great score after all, and deserves to top the list. No... that's just to horrible to imagine [​IMG]. Surely, the middle aged and elder ladies and gentlemen of a british Classic FM station must be wrong.

    I say Yay! For if Classic FM be with us, who could be against us? [​IMG]

    --
    Holadem
     
  15. Gary->dee

    Gary->dee Screenwriter

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    I think The Empire Strikes Back has the best soundtrack ever made. LOTR would be in my top 5 though. I'd also add John Barry to the list, probably On Her Majesty's Secret Service.
     
  16. Steve Christou

    Steve Christou Long Member

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    If I had to pick a favorite Bond score Gary it would be the one in your signature.[​IMG]
     
  17. Gary->dee

    Gary->dee Screenwriter

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    Right on and actually I bought the recently digitally remastered YOLT soundtrack too. I think it's great(the title song is the best Bond song IMO) but I think there are stronger Bond soundtracks.
     
  18. Marvin Richardson

    Marvin Richardson Supporting Actor

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    I'm a huge John Williams fan, but Harry Potter? And which "Indiana Jones" do they mean? Raiders of the Lost Ark? Did they just include all three as one entry? If so, I can't agree with that. The first two are far superior to the third one (as far as soundtracks go). Jaws should be there as well.
    I'd also include Poltergeist by Jerry Goldsmith (his best score in my opinion) but I'm sure I'd also be in the minority with that opinion.
     
  19. Rob Gillespie

    Rob Gillespie Producer

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    I think the wording of the poll is wrong and should be 'favourite' instead of 'greatest'.

    How can you possibly measure 'greatest'?
     
  20. Matt Pelham

    Matt Pelham Screenwriter

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    Finally, as list that includes The Last of the Mohicans , my choice for best music score of all time! Also glad Shawshank snuck in there.

    It is sad to not see any Hermann on there, I would've loved for Taxi Driver to be in the top 10 somewhere.

    As far as popular movie scores go this is not a bad list, and I honestly think the Fellowship of the Ring score is one of the best I've ever heard.
     

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