ByLivingston Wade Oden, writer at
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Livingston Wade Oden

A musical score sets the mood of the film, it's a heartbeat that helps the audience feel the emotion within a scene. Below are the five best scores from the five best composures of all time, according to me.

5. James Horner (Star Trek 2: The Wrath of Khan)

Some of you might be bewildered at this choice, but hear me out. James Horner had to take on the feat of taking a Jerry Goldsmith score and merging it with something new, but still keeping the same sounds and energy that resides within the Star Trek universe. The score begins with the popular musical notes that erupted into pop culture two decades before Star Trek 2 was released. The music has a new but familiar feeling, hitting all the emotional cues when there's a battle or witnessing the death of Spock. It plays beautifully against the visuals and I urge everyone to open their ears when watching The Wrath of Khan for the millionth time.

4. Jerry Goldsmith (Alien)

Jerry Goldsmith, a man already mentioned in this list, composed a creepy score that makes the hair stand up on your neck. It's hard to capture the essence of space, feeling alone in infinite blackness. It's a score that's dark, slow and frightening when you least expect it. The music does something different compared to other films. Instead of the music rising when a climactic death or action sequence happens, it instead becomes ominous and still. A feeling of discomfort washes over you instead of fear, but when you mix the discomfort of the score with the fear on screen it blends together perfectly into what a horror film should be. Scary as hell!

3. Danny Elfman (Batman)

Danny Elfman has done many great scores in his career. Beetlejuice, Spider-man, and Darkman all stick out to me as great musical pieces, but Batman had something special. For the longest time the theme for the caped crusader came from the Tim Burton directed film. It captures the heroic, yet dark nature of the movie in the best ways possible. The score even crossed over to television, becoming part of Batman: The Animated Series in the early nineties and was updated slightly in Batman Returns. This will always be my favorite superhero score.

2. Alan Silvestri (Back to the Future)

Who doesn't get a feeling of being a kid again when listening to the first ten seconds of this score? I'm instantly thrown back in time, sitting on my couch while watching a Delorean zoom by at eighty-eight miles per hour. It's a great feeling to have, and even better when it's just the music that can do that to you without the visuals. Alan Silvestri captures what it's like to be a teen thrusted into 1955. The music is perfectly blended with the action and emotional ties that grabs you from the beginning and doesn't let go until the Delorean flies at the audience in the end.

1. John Williams (Jaws)

Now I'm sure some of you out there are cussing at me, wondering why in the world I would pick Jaws over Star Wars or Indiana Jones. Jaws would have been nothing without this score. When the shark was basically useless on set Spielberg decided to make the camera the villain, and half the time it was a prop fin or something being drug in the water to show that there was something beneath the surface that could just take a bite out of you. John Williams elevated the creative use of Spielberg's ingenuity and basically made a monster out of the music. Without those two musical notes that we all know to be from Jaws, the movie wouldn't have succeeded to become the first summer blockbuster back in 1975.

What do you think? Are there some film scores that you think should be on this list over the ones I chose? Comment below and tell me what you think.


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