Wes Anderson’s 8 Best Soundtrack Choices

Wes Anderson's 8 Best Soundtrack Choices

Wes Anderson is one of the most talented screenwriters and directors of the last two decades, with a style as unique as Quentin Tarentino, P.T. Anderson or Tim Burton. But perhaps his greatest skill is picking the perfect soundtrack for his films, digging into artists’ catalogues for deep cuts and little-known ditties that fit the mood of the scene perfectly. Knock the man if you must for the quirky nature of his films, but they all feature fantastic soundtracks. Here’s a subjective look at eight of his best music choices.

1. “These Days” – Nico

The Royal Tenenbaums

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bl6FbeoXeHQ&w=584&h=390%5DA beautiful song and a beautiful character. The tempo almost seems to drag which works well with the slow motion in this flawlessly choreographed sequence.

2. “2000 Man” – The Rolling Stones

Bottle Rocket

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tcx0slK4FfE&w=584&h=390%5DAnderson has a habit of casting Owen Wilson in tragic roles, and none more tragic than Dignan in this film. The Stones’ back catalogue is featured throughout Anderson’s work, and the line “they just don’t understand” encapsulates Dignan’s character perfectly. Besides, he’s fuckin’ innocent.

3. “Making Time” – The Creation


[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-MDMdWdWqr0&w=584&h=390%5DBreak out the Rickenbackers for this deep cut from 1966. A classic Wes Anderson montage. Futura, anyone?

4. “Me And Julio Down By The Schoolyard” Paul Simon

The Royal Tenenbaums

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1_fnn-6X3lw&w=584&h=390%5DIt’s against the law, but Royal doesn’t care.

5. “This Time Tomorrow” The Kinks

The Darjeeling Limited

[vimeo http://www.vimeo.com/9588585 w=584&h=390]

Another stunningly-shot scene. Kind of predictable, though — who would have ever thought Bill Murray would beat Adrien Brody in a foot race?

6. “Space Oddity” – Seu Gorge

The Life Aquatic With Steve Zissou

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TajeXhZH0zo&w=584&h=390%5DAs if the film wasn’t absurd enough, there’s suddenly a Brazilian man singing a Bowie classic in Portuguese (which he does several times in the film) while pirates prepare to board the vessel. Anderson at the center of his element.

7. “Ooh La La” – Faces


[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ELQOnEgzt-I&w=584&h=390%5DThe entire soundtrack of the film is mid-to-late 1960s British rock, and this caps it off. And the chorus “I wish I knew then what I know now, before I was older” speaks volumes about the young Max Fischer.

8. “Needle In The Hay” – Elliot Smith

The Royal Tenenbaums

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9pyBB7y8fDU&w=584&h=390%5DEasily the darkest scene in the film, right down to the cool tones. It’s among the best in Anderson’s body of work. Song written by a guy who killed himself in a scene where a guy tries to kill himself = mind blown. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

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