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Awesome Music: Hans Zimmer
Awesome moments from Zimmer's scores for The Dark Knight Saga and Modern Warfare 2 can be found here and here.
  • The Finale of The Lone Ranger: a beefed-up version of the William Tell Overture mixed in with variations and Zimmer's original compositions. One of the few saving graces of the film.
  • "Journey to the Line" from his score for The Thin Red Line. Starts as a weird repetitive pinging sound in the background; builds to a heart-rending climax.
  • Black Hawk Down has a great score from start to finish, but the climax is with the last two pieces. The first is a beautiful song sung in Gaelic, and you can tell that it's a song of grief and loss even without understanding the lyrics (and they play it as they show the flag-draped coffins of the dead soldiers, the epilogue appears on screen, and an unknown soldier tells his wife to "be strong, tuck the girls in bed, and give them a kiss from daddy"). The second is "The Minstrel Boy", which runs as the credits begin. It has to be heard to be appreciated.
    • Another music piece that stands out is "Tribal War", which is a more action-oriented piece. However, it subverts the typical "awesome" battle music by becoming immensely menacing in tone. It sounds less like an epic battle is happening and more like a monster is on the loose.
  • Gladiator's musical finale is also extremely touching, climaxing with the track Now We Are Free, which is sung in a language that no one can understand but conveys the exact message as the title.
  • Similar is the epic finale to King Arthur (2004), a film that sadly didn't quite come off because of the script... but Zimmer's score and Clive Owen makes you feel it at the end: "All Of Them" (Marriage of Arthur and Guinevere)
    • "Budget Meeting" qualifies. Face it - that sheerly epic instrumentation is the sole reason (aside from scrumptious donuts) that people would even bother to attend budget meetings in real life.
  • For a film that is Exactly What It Says on the Tin, Muppet Treasure Island 's "Shiver My Timbers" and "Professional Pirate" (sorry, couldn't find the original clip) are some great pirate songs. Then again, music composed by Hans Zimmer and sung by Tim Curry is automatically bound for awesome.
  • Pirates of the Caribbean (2 & 3) - Absolutely fantastic. It's epic beyond epic... ness. And hey, Klaus Badelt, who wrote the first POTC score, was Zimmer's protege.
  • Pirates of the Caribbean: "He's a Pirate".
    • The Mario Paint version is pretty cool.
    • What could be better than "He's a Pirate" on its own? He's a Pirate plus epic guitar.
    • There is also a really good techno remix of it by DJ Tiesto.
    • Jack Sparrow's Intro Theme, "The Medallion Calls", first scored by Klaus Badelt. That one theme, with the character intro and The Reveal, made the whole movie for the first-time viewer. It's also the bridge melody in "He's a Pirate."
    • Davy Jones' Theme, which he plays himself on the organ, is given a gloriously epic rendition for the character's reintro in At World's End (from around 5:19-6:07).
      • Davy Jones' Theme is heartbreaking.
    • Other notable tracks include the Bach-esque "The Kraken", particularly the moment where the leviathan smashes the Edinburgh Trader clean in two; and the love/adventure theme from At World's End, presented up-tempo in "Up Is Down, and more sedately in "One Day."
    • (Captain!) Jack Sparrow has an especially fitting theme in part 2: alternatively tense and sedate, somewhat ambiguous, and slightly drunk.
    • And then there's "Hoist the Colors."'Nuff said.
    • Up Is Down is pretty awesome too.
    • Finally, a small but beautiful motif from the "parasail" scene in At World's End: Here at 2:37 from the "Marry Me" suite which sadly hasn't seen nearly enough of the light of day. It was a crime to leave it off the soundtrack...
      • "Part of the Ship... Part of the Crew..."
      • Also heard in the above track (and elsewhere in the soundtrack; it essentially makes up the backbone of the score) is Will and Elizabeth's theme. Just... God damn, Will and Elizabeth's theme is just heart-swelling. Anakin and Padmé have got nothing on these two. That theme alone could play on loop for several hours and the soundtrack would still be awesome.
      • Also in the grand finale of "One Day". First heard on the voyage to World's End, and then completed with the Big Damn Kiss, it's basically the unifying song of the third movie.
      • Sadly the music from the climactic scene mentioned above ("Part of the Ship"/"Hold On") is only used once in World's End, and not in any other track. Zimmer said he had come up with a musical cue so good, he kicked himself for using it in an existing work.
    • The wonderful Morricone hommage "Parley" from the At World's End Soundtrack.
    • And the background score for the Battle of the Maelstrom (track listing; 'I Don't Think Now Is the Best Time') is a Moment Of Awesome all by itself.
    • Blackbeard's theme from On Stranger Tides.
  • From The Da Vinci Code: "Chevalier du Sangreal." Also a Tear Jerker. Say what you will about the rest of the movie; the last scene WINS.
  • Mission Impossible 2 had a pretty fantastic score, and not only because of Zimmer's badass reworking of the main theme. "Mano-A-Mano" is pure epic, and the track "Injection" made the scene it was used in surprisingly moving - especially considering the silliness of the plot.
  • Backdraft definitely deserves to be on here, if only for the song "Show me your firetruck", which, Food Network watchers might recognize... (Sadly, the rights expired for the use of Zimmer's score, and the old episodes of Iron Chef shown in reruns now use different music.)
  • Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron is an animated movie about a horse. The horse, amazingly, never speaks more than a bit of narration. It doesn't matter, because Hans Zimmer wrote the soundtrack, and it is AWESOMELY expressive: "Run Free" and "Homeland". Bryan Adams wrote the lyrics, and while they don't work for some, "You Can't Take Me" is a rousing anthem for freedom.
  • For an action movie example, The Rock. The first half of Hummell Gets The Rockets (from the opening scene) is an emotionally powerful piece.
  • Zimmer definitely deserves a mention for composing the incidental music for The Lion King. "This Land", especially, is simply breathtaking.
    • "King of Pride Rock" near the end of the film (which plays during Simba's Awesome Moment of Crowning) is very moving.
    • It's one of the few scores to use heroic marches and victorious music performed exclusively by traditional African choirs. Simba's King Theme, known unofficially as "Busa Simba" bookends the movie during the end credits.
    • Under the Stars is gorgeous as well.
    • Scar and Simba Fight (the first 40 seconds of that video).
  • Tears of the Sun, particularly "Cameroon Border Post".
  • From The Last Samurai, "A Way of Life", "Red Warrior", "A Small Measure of Peace", and "The Way of the Sword".
  • The first track from his score for Angels & Demons, 160 BPM, also known as the Illuminati theme, is something diabolically epic and yet again entirely different from Zimmer.
    • There's also The God Particle, especially at the beginning.
    • "Election by Adoration", carried by violin virtuoso Joshua Bell's solo, and an awesome backing on the organ. 'ere we go.
  • Zimmer divided the score to The Prince of Egypt with Stephen Schwartz, who wrote the vocal tracks while Zimmer wrote the instrumental music. Both sides of the soundtrack have many awesome moments.
    • On the instrumental side, Red Sea's masterful use of tempo and instrumentation make the listener feel every emotion present in the film, and while Cry isn't particularly famous, Zimmer's use of motif and vocals accentuates the pain felt by the slaves.
    • Among vocal tracks, there is the powerful opening piece, "Deliver Us," sung by Ofra Haza.
    • Try listening to "When You Believe" and the multi-lingual version and not tear up.
    • The Burning Bush. Just... wow. Moses talking to God, and the music SHOWS it.
    • The song "Heaven's Eyes" is just full of this really great, fun energy!
    • And "The Plagues", incredibly powerful and dynamic.
  • The score of Kung Fu Panda deserves a mention for its awesome combination of Western and Chinese motifs. "Sacred Pool Of Tears" (stops at 2:55) is incredibly moving at the beginning, then made of awesomeness. "Oogway Ascends" is a tear jerker.
  • Rain Man, primarily for "Las Vegas".
  • His work on the soundtrack for The Pacific, particularly the opening theme, "Honor".
  • Inception. "Time".
  • Crimson Tide: "Roll Tide".
  • The Sherlock Holmes soundtrack, especially "Psychological Recovery...6 Months", which gets bonus points for being more than eighteen minutes long. If you haven't got that kind of time, Discombobulate manages to encapsulate pretty much everything you need to know about the Downey Jr.'s portrayal of Holmes, the setting, and the music for the rest of the film in one quirkily awesome two and a half minute package. And while it's more sedate at the beginning, the last three minutes of "Catatonic" build up to an absolutely furiously paced climax that must have set a more than a couple violins on fire.
  • From Rango, "Bats." Pretty interesting use of public domain music.
  • His incredible theme for Broken Arrow, which Marco Beltrami would later (controversially?) recycle for Scream 2. Give it a listen.
  • His work on Man of Steel is yet another notch on his baton of epic film scores, focusing on slow epic build-ups with ultra tense drumming (almost a dozen drum sets were used). Especially with "What Are You Going To Do When You Are Not Saving The World?"
  • His work on 12 Years a Slave brought many into tears, particularly with the track, "Nothing to Forgive".
  • For The Amazing Spider-Man 2, he gave us the awesomely creepy Electro Suite.

John WilliamsAwesomeMusic/Film28 Days Later

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