PorchDrinking Playlist | An Ode to Summer Movie Season
Featured image courtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures
It’s funny how Hollywood has decided that the best time to release their biggest, CGI-fueled blockbusters is during the season when the weather is finally nice enough that you actually want to go outside. I blame Los Angeles’ eternal summer for Hollywood’s ignorance of seasons. But, here we are in early May, and as Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 gets our Baby Groots dancing, let’s take a moment to pay tribute to one of the great American pastimes: the hit soundtrack song.
I say a prayer of thanks to Mufasa for every day that I was born and raised in the golden era of the soundtrack song. I’m positive that the rhythms of Michael Sambello’s “Maniac” provided the backdrop to my conception, and the delivery room was surely blaring a mix of “Purple Rain,” “Ghostbusters'” and “Footloose.” I spent the entirety of “I Don’t Want To Miss A Thing” wobbling back and forth at my 8th grade dance wondering if my poor dance partner could sense my unyielding love through the fingertips—touching her from arms held at maximum extension.
Like many puzzled 90s kids, I spent a whole summer trying to figure out what exactly did “Kiss From A Rose” have to do with Batman, and I had the privilege of seeing at least three movies in the theater that prominently featured Smashmouth’s “All Star.” Somewhere between hearing “My Heart Will Go On” for the 11,396th time on the radio and wondering if I would be ready to fly if called upon to defend the earth from invading alien basketball squads, I came to appreciate and anticipate the latest soundtrack hit and the movie that accompanied it.
As my youth faded, the prominence of the soundtrack hit unfortunately seemed to fade with it. While we have had some truly great soundtracks in the new Willenium (O Brother, Where Art Thou?, Kill Bill, Into the Wild, Inside Llewyn Davis, American Hustle, the aforementioned Guardians of the Galaxy to name a few), the diminishing necessity for a movie to promote itself through a signature soundtrack song has left an “Eye of the Tiger”-sized hole in society. Did social media change the marketing landscape? Did Chad Kroeger’s Spider Man song poison the well for everyone else? Is Kenny Loggins bound and gagged in someone’s garage being held at ransom as Hollywood studios gather up funds?
There have been signs of life, though. Adele combined with the most prolific soundtrack franchise to give us a solid Bond song for “Skyfall”, and everyone’s favorite N’Sync member blessed us with one of the catchiest songs in years as part of the soundtrack for a movie whose subject happens to be, and I don’t think this is a coincidence, one of the cultural toy icons of the 90s. While we cross our fingers and hope for better than music from the movies depicting various shades of grey, let’s enjoy this compilation of the songs from the silver screen.