Often times a musician goes out of his or her way to record a singular song to accompany a film, whether it’s featured in the film or serves as an afterword on the soundtrack. These songs usually do not have the same weight or necessity as the film’s score, and are sometimes produced solely to make more money.
On the other side of that fence, some films hold a special place for the original song, like the James Bond series or how Randy Newman always shows up with more to say about friendship in the Toy Story films.
Each year, an Oscar is given to the Best Original Song, selected from around 5 nominees. Though these nominees are selected from a decent sized shortlist, there are still songs out there from movies past that you don’t hear much about. Here are 10 songs that deserve some more recognition….
10. “Dull Tool” By Fiona Apple (This Is 40)
Starting with the last year, there were many considerably good songs in 2012 films. From the heavy hitting “100 Black Coffins” from Rick Ross in “Django Unchained” to the Oscar-winning “Skyfall” theme from Adele, music held its head high in the stream of films. No movie in 2012 examined the music industry like Judd Apatow’s “This Is 40″, in which one of the lead characters runs a suffering record label where he aspires to give classic voices an outlet to a generation that is too busy pushing forward fast.
The musical aspect of “This Is 40″ is, of course, more of a B-plot to the main story, which deals with the thesis: being 40. However, the way the industry is portrayed is not unlike the tired relationship of the central couple, Pete and Debbie. “Dull Tool” deals with the rhythm of Pete and Debbie’s repeated quarrels and the cycles that have come to doom their life together. “You don’t say what you mean/You don’t talk loud enough/No pulse in your impulse”, Fiona Apple crafts out the ultimate argument between two exhausted people.
This article was first posted on March 9, 2013