EDITORIAL: SPIDER-MAN Needs A New Theme Song
Music is one of the most important aspects of a movie no matter what the genre. If I ask you to think of some great movie theme music what instantly pops into mind?Sing Danny Elfman's Spider-Man theme for me right now. Can you? Can you?!!
Music is one of the most important aspects of a movie no matter what the genre. If I ask you to think of some great movie theme music what instantly pops into mind.? Jaws. Star Wars. James Bond. the original Superman. Danny Elfman's Batman theme.
Not just that but think of all the great musical themes within Star Wars alone. Luke's theme (later renamed the Skywalker theme) which plays as Luke looks off into the dual sunset. Leia's theme which we first hear as she loads her message into R2D2. The Empire's theme. The Force theme. Not to mention the Cantina song or one of my all-time favorite pieces The Battle of Yavin.
Go to the 5:22 mark and tell me your heart doesn't start racing.
The score is so powerful it IS a character in the film. As important as the special effects, the cast, etc. Would we have loved Star Wars as much if it had a different score? No way.
It seems lately this has become something of a lost art. If I ask you to to hum Danny Elfman's Spider-man theme what do you come up with.? Go ahead. Try it.
The thing about Elfman's main theme is that it's always building. It builds and builds then switches to another part that builds and builds. It's really more of an overture.
Not that Elfman did a bad job by any means. I think he was perfectly suited for the task. Go back and watch Peter and Harry's fight in SM3. It's possibly the most exciting piece of music from the entire Raimi trilogy. But still.. I don't think Spidey got his theme.
The music in the current reboot of Spider-man is downright awful. The scene where Spidey fights the Lizard at the school was really exciting. Unfortunately the score sounded like it was meant to accompany a scene of a black stallion riding majestically across a beach.
When I was a kid I loved that old Spider-man cartoon. The one from the 60's. Yes, the animation is pretty awful but that show had the best soundtrack of about any show in the history of television. Who doesn't love that theme song and if you don't, what's wrong with you?
Not to mention the music in every episode was composed by greats such as Syd Dale and David Lindup. This music was so cool it even created a sub-genre of music known as 'Spidey-jazz." Personally I would love it if a new Spider-man movie sounded like this.
or go to the 6:55 mark and tell me if you don't think this would make a great Spidey theme..
There have been some great attempts at reclaiming the glory days of John Williams. Alan Silvestri did a pretty fine job on Captain America. But what's Thor's theme.? Or the Hulk's? Or Iron Man's? In Iron Man 3 they lifted bits of the Avengers' theme. That was pretty cool but I still don't think there's an identifiable theme for him and there should be.
Hans Zimmer did a great job on the Batman movies. I'd say that Batman does have a clear theme but it's more of a 2-note mood builder than it is a theme. It's a great 2-note mood builder, don't get me wrong. It's just not one that gets stuck in your head. The same can be said for the Joker's theme. It's just one note and it is absolutely terrifying but again.. not something you hum to yourself walking down the street. If you do that's kinda weird.
I'm not saying modern CBMs have to try to emulate only the work of John Williams. I don't see any reason a CBM couldn't do with some James Bond electric guitar or some Adam West-era Batman rockin' drums. More care needs to be put into crafting memorable music because really, we're living in a golden age of CBM's. And if there's one thing holding them back from being truly timeless it's identifiable theme songs.
So, how about somebody hire JG Thirlwell to score a Spider-man movie?
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