Even though “Please Mr. Kennedy” is probably still stuck in most people’s heads, it is officially a new year full of films with music that will move us to tears, make us cheer, make us smile, or simply introduce us to something different. Sometimes a movie won’t hit all the marks, but the music will be unforgettable and other times the music ends up being the element that makes a film by tying all the other elements together. After looking over the titles set to hit theaters this year, the following 15 are the ones to keep your ears open for.
From well-known composers embarking on new collaborations to popular artists once again taking to the stand to musicians stepping away from their usual genres into something new, the upcoming year is poised to deliver films boasting an eclectic array of tunes.
If you are still looking for something to use those holiday iTunes gift cards on, get ready to add these upcoming scores and soundtracks to your playlists for 2014.
The Grand Budapest Hotel
Alexandre Desplat has a busy year ahead of him having, true to form, composed music for an array of films – The Monuments Men, Godzilla, and The Grand Budapest Hotel. But it is Desplat’s collaborations with director Wes Anderson that seem to produce some of his most interesting work.
Having worked with Anderson on Fantastic Mr. Fox and Moonrise Kingdom, Desplat has proven he understands how to create music for Anderson’s unique worlds by making sure the music delivers the right amount of heart without being too serious.
The Grand Budapest Hotel is set to come out Friday, March 7th.
Mr. Peabody and Sherman
Danny Elfman is usually heard collaborating on the latest Tim Burton project, but when he steps away from Burton and branches out into other movies, the results have been wildly entertaining (see: Silver Linings Playbook, Men In Black). Elfman’s ability to convey emotion while still keeping things light and fun makes him the perfect composer to create the music for Mr. Peabody and Sherman – a story about a boy, his dog, and a WABAC machine that helps them travel through time and get into madcap adventures with historical figures (naturally).
Mr. Peaboy and Sherman is set to come out Friday, March 7th.
More and more YA books are being adapted for the big screen and the majority of these films have ended up delivering a solid slate of music. While the focus is usually on the placed songs and popular artists featured on the soundtrack, the score for Divergent brings together Hans Zimmer and Junkie XL, which should make for an interesting collaboration between the veteran composer and electronica artist. Just as Divergent tells the story of a girl (Shailene Woodley) who does not fit inside a certain box or category, the score looks play outside that box as well.
Divergent is set to come out Friday, March 21st.
Muppets Most Wanted
The Muppets have long been synonymous with good music — from the catchy songs they break into to their hilarious band Dr. Teeth and the Electric Mayhem. The Muppets saw Bret McKenzie take home the Oscar for Best Original Song for “Man or Muppet” and that film’s follow up, Muppets Most Wanted, should give audiences ever more good music with Christophe Beck returning as the film’s composer plus a new song, “Something So Right,” from Celine Dion (who did pretty well the last time she contributed a song to a film).
Muppets Most Wanted is set to come out Friday, March 21st.
Noah will pair director Darren Aronofsky with his long-time collaborator Clint Mansell and that should be enough to grab your ear. After the stunning and off-putting score Mansell created for their last film together, Black Swan, it should be interesting to hear what they have in store when taking on this epic biblical tale. You can count on envelope-pushing visuals from Aronofsky, but you can also count on a unique score from Mansell, the master at combining many different elements into a singular score that not only works, but stays in your mind long after a film ends.
Noah is set to release Friday, March 28th.