So, the husband, I may have mentioned, is an epic nerd (it’s ok, I love this about him). His passion is video games, namely of the “old-school” variety. One way he indulges in this passion is as the co-host of a weekly podcast called The Retro League, where they review and discuss all things video games from the 70’s, 80’s, and 90’s. Kind of sounds like a radio station, right? I thought so too. Especially this week, when the topic of favorite movies and soundtracks of 1995 came up.
Yes, 1995 was 20 years ago…shed a few tears and move on.
On a recent car ride, in between bouts of shouting from our two redheads in the backseat (“You’re breathing my air!”), the husband and I discussed our favorites from 1995 and I realized 3 things: 1) while our taste in music rarely intersects, 1995 had several soundtracks the husband and I both enjoy, 2) looking back at the awesome and horrible (uh, Showgirls, anyone?) movies that came out in 1995, it was a really good AND bad year for film, and 3) it was an even better year for soundtracks – in fact, I am going to go ahead and say 1995 may be THE YEAR of movie soundtracks (for me, personally).
Of course, you know this means I’m going to list them for you. When can I ever resist a Top 10 List? Here we go:
Top 10 FAVORITE SOUNDTRACKS (or at least songs) FROM THE MOVIES OF 1995
Well…it turns out I couldn’t come up with 10 soundtracks total, so instead here are 5 movies and 5 soundtracks/songs:
FAVORITE MOVIES FROM 1995
5. 12 MONKEYS – When you realize Brad Pitt is more than just a pretty face. Holy hell, the man can act. This movie is equal parts effed up and brilliant and a wild ride.
4. TOY STORY – I actually like Toy Story 2 better than the first, but this tale of Woody and Buzz is still wonderful and heartwarming with plenty of hilarious moments that make it a keeper.
3. BABE – the little pig who could. I adore this darling story of non-conformity, trusting your instincts, and going for it.
2. SENSE & SENSIBILTY – the clothes, the setting, the romance. *sigh* I girl crushed hard on Emma Thompson and Kate Winslet, and good lord, who in their right mind would say no to Alan Rickman as Colonel Brandon?
1. USUAL SUSPECTS – a puzzle that envelops you, the characters, the plot, the subtle details. An amazing film. If you have not seen it, go watch it now. I’ll wait.
FAVORITE SOUNDTRACKS/SONGS FROM 1995 MOVIES
5. POCAHONTAS – Yes, it’s Disney, and yes Disney “disney-fied” history. See this article from the Smithsonian for a more factual version. But I admit it, yes, Vanessa Williams, former Miss USA, I want to paint with all The Colors of the Wind. I confess I like that song, I even cop to the fact I like the movie, and even though I know it’s completely bogus, I like the love story between pre-creep Mel Gibson, er, John Smith and Pocahontas. Did you know Disney had to turn down the heat on these two, and cut a scene? (Actually, they claimed kids in test audiences were bored by the song, which I can totally see, it does go on for a while). The song, If I Ever Knew You, is actually not so bad (when NOT being sung by Mel). Another fun fact, for Pocahontas 2, the character of John Smith was voiced by Mel’s brother.
4. BRAVEHEART – Yes, there was a time when some of us were not aware Mel Gibson was an asshat. Like Disney’s Pocahontas, this movie blatantly ignores fact for the sake of fiction. And I still don’t care. I love this movie. And I love the soundtrack. It’s great for background music when I’m writing. Usually, I am totally fine listening to music with lyrics while writing, but sometimes my brain needs a pinch more focus and this soundtrack fits the bill (Last of the Mohicans works too, but that movie came out in ’92).
3. TANK GIRL – full disclosure, I never saw this movie. The soundtrack, however, is a roll call of alterna-cool including L7, Portishead, Bush, Belly, and Veruca Salt. I enjoy most of the songs, from the instrumental Ripper’s Sole by Stomp, to the moody Roads by Portishead. My unexpected favorite is Mockingbird Girl by The Magnificent Bastards. Though not too surprising, when you realize the lead singer is Scott Weiland of Stone Temple Pilots fame – train wreck he unfortunately might be, I love this guy’s voice.
2. MORTAL KOMBAT – very early in our relationship, I spent hours upon hours hanging out in smoky arcades (you could still smoke in a building back then) while my husband-then-boyfriend kicked virtual ass and took names playing Mortal Kombat. He was awesome as any character, but his weapon of choice tended to be Scorpion or Sub-Zero. (Which is why, when I recently heard “Get over here!” in a commercial I knew INSTANTLY who it was.) Kind of inevitable I would play the game a few times, and the character I preferred was Raiden. Yes it was because he could be a weenie and teleport behind someone to uppercut the crap out of them, or fly across the room, knock an opponent over and fry ’em with electricity…Raiden had all the cool easy tricks. I won a decent number of rounds, though that was probably just dudes being nice to the one chick in the room.
Anyway, the 1995 movie was comically bad, but I love many of the songs off the soundtrack. The intro track, A Taste of Things to Come, is an instrumental song and a great mood booster while going for a run (the same can be said for Control by Traci Lords). I love Juke-Joint Jezebel by KMFDM, and if you enjoy techy-tunes of the 90s from the likes of NIN, The Chemical Brothers, and Crystal Method, you’ll love it too. But my absolute favorite song on the album is Halcyon + On + On by Orbital. Love this song so much it’s going to appear twice on this list. Watch for it.
1. HACKERS – #1 on this list because I LOVE the movie AND the soundtrack. I love almost every song on the album. I can listen to it while working out, cleaning the house, writing…doing other, er, stuff. So, so good. Some of my favorites: Voodoo People and One Love, both by Prodigy, The Joker by Josh G Abrahams, Communicate by Plastico, Cowgirl by Underworld… basically I could keep going and list every song, I adore pretty much all of them. Especially Halcyon + On + On by Orbital, I told you you’d see this song again. Here it is. I LOVE this song. And the husband does too. Which is why we chose this song to be the track played at our wedding reception when the doors bust open and the wedding party makes their entrance. Sound awesome? It totally was.
So there they are, my favorite soundtracks/songs from movies of 1995. Do you have any to share? Tweet @RetroLeague and let them know.