*sigh*… anyone remember when the Oscar nominated songs were all well-known hits? Seems like those days are long gone. Honestly, can anyone recall which song won “Best Song” within the last five years? It’s not an easy task, since most of the songs, outside of an animated feature, have never reached large audiences. Even if they weren’t very good, at least people recognized them. Since AFI already has a solid list of the best 100 songs from movies, we decided to offer the worst, because that’s just the type of people we are.
“We May Never Love Like This Again” from The Towering Inferno
This isn’t a terrible song, and it won an Oscar, but it leaves many to wonder… why the hell is it in this movie? The Towering Inferno is about a fire breaking out in the world’s tallest building. It’s pretty clear they threw the song in there just to get another Oscar win like The Poseidon Adventure did with “The Morning After.” Just watch the music video on youtube of this song set to scenes of the movie. There’s a big disconnect with the lyrics and what’s happening (people dying from catching on fire).
“Human Again” from Beauty & the Beast
This is one of Disney’s best scores, but this additional to the recent home release isn’t up to snuff. All this does is prove that Beast’s servants are selfish little bastards. Turns out, they don’t care about Belle and Beast learning to love each other in the slightest. They just want them to fall in love out of purely self-interested motives.
“Gollum’s Song” from Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers
Many people remember Enya’s sweeing Gaelic blessing of “May it Be” from The Fellowship of the Ring and Annie Lennox’s power ballad “Into the West” from The Return of the King, but almost no one will recall that, sandwiched between those two emotional numbers, lies the schizophernic arrangement that makes up “Gollum’s Song,” performend by Emiliana Torrini (who?). The song is creepy, badly sung, and unmemorable. Which is odd considering Gollum is probably the best remembered character of the franchise. Why not give the poor little ugly creature a break?
“Die Another Die” from Die Another Day
Worst. Bond. Song. Ever. Most Bond songs are catchy, lyrical, and yes, even sexy. Think Carly Simon’s iconic “Nobody Does it Better” from The Spy Who Loved Me. Surprisingly, Madonna has helped bring some of the best songs to movies, like “This Used to Be My Playground” from A League of Their Own, “I’ll Remember” from With Honors, or “I’m Breathless” from Dick Tracey, but what happened here? One theory: she hasn’t improved with age.
“Learn to Be Lonely” from The Phantom of the Opera
Talk about a Oscar bait. Movie musicals often add new numbers to a film to differentiate it from the Broadway source, but this one just plays over the credits in a cheap fashion. It doesn’t even sound like anything in the rest of the movie. Webber’s score is boastful and evocative, but this piece fluctuates between what feels like just a few notes. Was Webber even trying?
“Raindrops Keep Falling On my Head” from Butch Cassiday and the Sundance Kid
Great song + great movie = well, garbage. Such a random song choice for this type of movie. This is a pop/flower power song from 1967 in a western movie. I mean, huh?? It’s always tacky to have modern music in a period piece, and this one is no exception.
“To The Sky” from The Owls of Ga’Hool
The owls of what, now? Oh yeah, that owl movie that came out a couple of years ago. The movie itself is, actually, pretty underrated. It’s a little terrifying for a kids movie, but certainly no darker than some of those early Disney flicks. The cinematography and score are lush, and it features some of the best animation around. The song though… were they trying to lighten the dark mood with a pop song that sounded like The Counting Crows? It practically wrecks the entire feel for the rest of the move.
“My Heart Will Go On” from Titanic
Yeah, yeah, yeah. You knew it was coming. Celine Dion’s famous hit that made a bigger splash than the iceberg itself. Had it not been played on every single radio station for the entire year, the song might be more sufferable, but that’s not what happened. The overexposure turned this song into a huge punch line. And, on top of that, the lyrics don’t make any sense. Sounds like she’s moving on. Oh well. We did.
“It’s Hard Out Here for a Pimp” from Hustle & Flow
In an academy that gives standing ovations to pervs and criminals like Woody Allen or Roman Polanski, is it really all that surprising that they’d nominate a song that could pretty much apply to every Hollywood producer? Not really. The song itself, is just awful, and perhaps the worst that’s ever won “Best Song.” Too many rappers trying to be the star, and they’re just not very good at it.
“Make ’em Laugh” from Singin’ in the Rain
This is the worst song in a movie full of bad songs. Yes, “Singin’ in the Rain,” “Good Mornin’,” and “Would You?” are great, but does anyone really want to watch “Moses Supposes,” “You Were Meant for Me,” or that overly long “Broadway Dance Medly” without springing for the fast forward button? “Make ’em Laugh” might be a little more bearable than those pieces, but not by much. The reason the song makes the list, however, is because it is an obvious rip-off of The Pirate’s “Be a Clown.”
“If I Were King of the Forest” from The Wizard of Oz
Kill this lion. Please. What does this song do besides bring the movie to a screeching halt? Who didn’t hate this part of the movie when they were a kid? Just get to the wizard already. And it makes no sense to give this character a solo over the Scarecrow or the Tinman.