We’ve all felt it before. When watching a film, that extra tug of emotion that’s heightened by what you can’t you see: the noise in the background. Just as silence can communicate mountains about a character’s past or relationship with the world, music can inform our contextual judgment of a cinematic moment, adding a special layer to our esthetic awareness.
Take Punch Drunk Love. Director P.T. Anderson flexed the volume on Jon Brion’s minimalistic score to communicate what Adam Sandler’s severely bipolar character, Barry, couldn’t with words. When Barry got mad, he yelled – but what we hear is spastic violins spewing his frustration, the din explaining his anger far better than words. But it’s not just the music. It’s the volume, the pauses, the stillness or energy a sound in a song can contain – all that happens in the unspoken void. That, is as powerful as cinematography.
As Cameron Crowe once said, “The best soundtrack music by-passes your mind and goes straight to your soul. It sort of trips something in your brain, you know you’re being transported.”
Here’s a list of upcoming films that we were sold on based off their promising soundtracks alone. Listen to their music below.
12 Years A Slave (Now Playing). Directed by Steve McQueen. Score by Hans Zimmer
The Grand Budapest Hotel (February 2014). Directed by Wes Anderson. Score by Alexandre Desplat (Argo, Zero Dark Thirty, Moonrise Kingdom).
Her (December 2013). Directed by Spike Jonze. Score by Arcade Fire.
The Amazing Spiderman-2 (May 2014). Directed by Marc Webb. Score by Hans Zimmer in collaboration with Pharrell Williams, Johnny Marr and Incubus’ Mike Einziger.
The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (December 2013). Directed by Ben Stiller. Score by Theodore Shapiro, with contributors Jose Gonzalez (Junip) and St. Vincent