Last week one of my Twitter followers (@Andreas_Sch) told me that he set Edith Piaf's "Non, je ne regrette rien" as his alarm clock ringtone. I thought it was brilliant, and it really got me thinking about the relationship of classic music in sci-fi films (it also sent me on an iTunes shopping spree). As a lover of tragedy, a lot of the songs I thought of were the kind of songs played to conjure up feelings of bittersweet nostalgia; recognizable songs that have a personal meaning to the protagonist or the story. Here is a list of songs I came up with (in no particular order):
- The Very Thought of You by Billie Holiday - This song stabs me in the heart every time I hear it, thanks to Forever Young.
- Non, je ne regrette rien by Édith Piaf - This song, made popular to English speakers by the film Inception, is the kind of song I want to sing at the top of my voice while the universe comes to a fiery end.
- We'll Meet Again by (Dame) Vera Lynn - The "happy" ending to cult classic Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb. Makes me smile and get teary-eyed all at once.
- Blueberry Hill by Fats Domino - This song was featured in one of my favorite time-travel films of all time; Twelve Monkeys. Bruce Willis deserved a fucking Oscar for this scene alone.
- Singin' in the Rain by Gene Kelly (*ahem* or Malcolm McDowell) - Beautiful brutality from Stanley Kubrick's masterpiece A Clockwork Orange. Truly haunting.
Honorable mentions: Ruby Tuesday in Children of Men (disqualified for being a new version, not Rolling Stones); and We Have All the Time in the World in On Her Majesty's Secret Service (disqualified because it's not usually recognized as a sci-fi film).
Can you think of more? Looking forward to listening to your haunting suggestions.