Well, it's Friday and you know what that means. Yes, my Oriental lotus blossom for hire Fah Lo Suee and I are off to the lovely Cayman Islands, where we're going to try to find the off-shore tax haven/blind trust where presidential hopeful Willard "Mitt" Romney is reported to have stashed his manhood.
That being the case, and because it will be preternaturally quiet around here for a couple of days (unless I miss my guess) here's a fun little project to help us fill the aching void in what passes for our shriveled souls:
Best or Worst Use of a Pop/Rock/Soul Song in Either a Credit Sequence or Non-Musical Scene in a Film Drama or Comedy!!!
No arbitrary rules, except -- of course -- no concert films, documentaries, or features starring The Beatles need apply.
And my totally top of my head Top Five is...
5. Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross -- "The Immigrant Song" (as heard in The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo)
I didn't care for the opening montage that accompanies it, but Mr. Nine Inch Nails' remake of the Led Zep song, which sets up the tone of the subsequent film perfectly, is just one of many reasons that David Fincher's Hollywood adaptation of TGWTDT is light years better than the Swedish, hippo-root sucking, original.
4. Van Morrison -- "Into the Mystic" (as heard in Panic in Needle Park)
I dunno if Van was thinking "heroin" when he wrote it, but the scene with Al Pacino and Kitty Winn (whatever the hell happened to her, BTW?) shooting up to to its slightly melancholy strains is one of the most indelible images in American films of the 70s. IMHO.
3. Herman's Hermits -- "I'm Into Something Good" (as heard in The Naked Gun)
Okay, it's a remake, but it is Peter Noone singing. I should add that the scene from the montage where Nielsen and Presley come out of Platoon laughing hysterically never fails to crack me up.
2. Gary Glitter -- "Rock and Roll" (as heard in Moolight Mile)
I was gonna nominate the film's Rolling Stones title tune, which is beautifully used, but it dawned on me that the Glitter track, from earlier in the same scene, is actually surprisingly effective despite being about as massively over-familiar as anything can be. Fun fact: After Robert Plant saw the film, he called up Mick Jagger to tell him how much he had liked "Moonlight Mile" (the song) and asked him what album it was on and when it had originally been released. I am not making this up.
And the Numero Uno not so hot they're-gonna-put-me-in-the-movies tune of all time simply has to be...
1. Alica Keys and Jack White -- "Another Way to Die" (as heard in Quantum of Solace)
I have no problem with either Keys or White, but I think we can all agree that this one is pretty unmemorable as James Bond theme songs go. Or maybe it just seems that way knowing that it was supposed to be Amy Winehouse.
Alrighty, then -- what would your choices be?
*[Hey, don't blame me -- "The Spy With the Biggest Penis You Ever Saw in Your Life" was an actual parody poster in the February 1977 issue of the National Lampoon. If you ask me nicely, I'll scan it and put it up one of these days....]