Tuesday, March 31, 2009
A few years during the Oscars there was a special performance featuring some of the winners in the Best Song category.
I was more than surprised to realize that some of the most beloved English songs of all time actually came from the movies. Some of these songs have survived time even when the films they were featured in are practically forgotten. Watching "Swing Time" I remembered this all over when Fred Astaire sits to play the piano and the lovely "The Way You Look Tonight" comes out of his mouth.
The first time I remember hearing, and instantly falling in love with this song, was in "My Best Friend's Wedding" when I was eleven years old. And even though this post could steer into "Songs from movies featured prominently in other movies" (I'm looking at you "Ghost"), for now I'll just concentrate on the Oscar winning songs.
While it's true that Fred Astaire wasn't the best singer ever (neither was Gene Kelly), his performance has something extra; a little bit of melancholy and innocence that make the song feel more available to everyone who wants it.
We know not everyone can be Sinatra and his performances sometimes are better left off to be seen and heard, but with Astaire you wanna join him and sing.
That must be the reason why "The Way You Look Tonight" ended up winning the Oscar in 1936.
Here are some other songs I was stunned to discover came from films:
"I've Got You Under My Skin" from "Born to Dance" (1936)
"They Can't Take That Away From Me" from "Shall We Dance" (1937)
"The Last Time I Saw Paris" from "Lady Be Good" (1941)
"That Old Black Magic" from "Star Spangled Rhythm" (1943)
"Long Ago and Far Away" from "Cover Girl" (1944)
"I Fall In Love Too Easily" from "Anchors Aweigh" (1945)
"Mona Lisa" from "Captain Carey, U.S.A" (1950)
"A Kiss to Build a Dream On" from "The Strip" (1951)
"That's Amore" from "The Caddy" (1953)
"Unchained Meoldy" from "Unchained" (1955)
"Whatever Will Be, Will Be (Que Será Será) from "The Man Who Knew Too Much" (1956)
"All the Way" from "The Joker is Wild" (1957)
"The Look of Love" from "Casino Royale" (1967)
"Say You Say Me" from "White Nights" (1985)
"Nothing's Gonna Stop Us Now" from "Mannequin" (1987)
How long has it been since a song from the movies made it big?
- This post is part of "Musical of the Month" hosted by Nathaniel Rogers of "The Film Experience".