Thursday, December 15, 2011

The Fantastic in the Fine Arts: Movie/TV Soundtracks

It's finals week for me, so I'm in desperate need of entertainment that doesn't require huge amounts of critical thinking.  That is why, when thinking about what to feature in this week's "Fantastic in the Fine Arts" column, my mind kept resisting classical works of art and music, and instead, kept pushing me toward movies and TV shows.

And so today, we're featuring two clips in which the music is so evocative, so passionate that it is (for me, at least) impossible to resist.  Intellectually, I recognize that the music is there to make me feel a certain way, but it's so wonderful that I find myself being completely drawn into the scene anyways.

The first example of this comes from the fourth series of the new Doctor Who--the final episode in the regular series, entitled "Journey's End."  [mild spoilers after the jump]

The Doctor has just saved humanity once again, and in this clip, he and everyone he knows are flying the TARDIS together to put the Earth back in its proper place in the universe.  (It's a long story how it got moved in the first place.)  The plot details aren't really important here, though--what is important is how the music that accompanies this scene (starting about 28 seconds into the clip) makes you share in the joy that the Doctor and his friends are feeling:

Another of my favorite examples of this, where the music just completely draws me into the scene, comes in the third movie of the Lord of the Rings trilogy, The Return of the King.  Pippin climbs up to the signal beacon to call for Rohan's aid, and the music does a marvelous job of conveying the new breath of hope that this action inspires.  In this clip in particular, the soundtrack matches perfectly with the sweeping camera views of the mountains, with music and image working together to suggest inspiration and hope.

So, in the spirit of fun and the end of the semester, what are your favorite examples of movie or TV music?  Let us know in the comments!