Five of the Best – Film Scores

Music Scores for the audio fanatics

It’s that time of the week again, for our Five of the Best!

This week we’ve decided to switch it up and instead of focusing on the films themselves, we focus on the music behind them. Conductor Leopold Stowoski once said “A painter paints his pictures on canvas. But musicians paint their pictures on silence.” In film it is the job of the composer to mask the gaps in dialogue and action with music and sound.

Can you imagine watching big Hollywood movies without scores behind them to drive the action along?

So let’s get straight into it with Not Salt Popcorn’s Five Of The Best Film Scores. The only rules we have for this is that there cannot be more than one score from each composer (we don’t want a John Williams & Hans Zimmer dominated list!


The Magnificent Seven (Elmer Bernstein, 1960)

In at number five we have Elmer Bernstein’s score for the infamous spaghetti western ‘The Magnificent Seven.’ Although most people may not be familiar with where the music is from, they will have heard the theme for ‘The Magnificent Seven’ at some point in their life.

It can be said that in some cases film music serves its purpose but can be forgettable, but in the case of ‘The Magnificent Seven’ it is a score that really enhances the watching experience. Bernstein created scores that had the energy to drive such an action filled film along.


The Power Of One (Hans Zimmer, 1989)

Most people know Hans Zimmer for his scores in films such as The Lion King, Gladiator, Inception & The Dark Knight, but I went a little left field with this one, picking his score for 1989 film ‘The Power Of One.’ For those of you that have heard the musical styling’s of ‘The Lion King,’ this is where Zimmer got his inspiration.

Teaming up with South African composer Lebo M, Zimmer was able to create a score that invokes hope in a film where the main premise is tragedy and oppression of the main characters.


Back to the Future (Alan Silvestri, 1985)

Alan Silvestri’s composition for ‘Back to the Future’ is seen as Silvesti’s first venture into the big time, it was this score that catapult him into being one of the household names of film composition. Silvestri managed to create a thrilling symphonic score that is almost as synonymous with the film as its famous DeLorean.

Although the score contains very simple themes throughout, I feel this is what makes it so memorable to the listeners and watchers of the movie.


Jurassic Park (John Williams, 1993)

No film music list would be complete without scores from the great composer John Williams. With the likes of Harry Potter, Star Wars, Indiana Jones and Jaws under his belt, it was very hard to pick just one, but after much deliberation I settled on the fantastic Jurassic Park score.

Jurassic Park was a breakout film in terms of CGI visual effects innovation and a film of this magnitude needed a brilliant score to go with it. Williams score contains two very memorable themes that are present throughout.

I think it would be very challenging to find a score that sounder fuller than Williams score for Jurassic Park.

Listen to this track on our Not Salt Popcorn Spotify playlist here.


Up (Michael Giacchino, 2009)

It is not often that a piece of music can evoke emotion in the same way that Michael Giacchino’s score for the fantastic Disney animation ‘Up’ did. Giacchino manages to wonderfully capture the adventure, the memories and the overall humour of the film as a whole.

Whilst writing the soundtrack Giacchino stated that he “wanted to use majestic, emotional musical gestures, but also leave the audience with a tune stuck in their head,” I can safely say that he achieved and surpassed this feat, with a soundtrack that is as if not more memorable than the film itself.


That’s all for this weeks ‘Five Of The Best,’ I’m sure that these choices will very much polarise opinion. Let us know your thoughts, what would you have in your top five?

This track also features on our Not Salt Popcorn Spotify playlist here.

The Magnificent Seven
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The Power of One
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Back to the Future
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Jurassic Park
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Up
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