Forrest Gump & Other "Generation-Defining" Soundtracks
The Forrest Gump soundtrack debuted on June 28, 1994, a week ahead of the film itself, which would go on to smash box-office records, win numerous awards and become one of the most beloved movies of the past 20 years. It is still endlessly quotable, emotional, and entertaining, and the soundtrack played no small part in Gump's continuing legacy.
It's a two-disc affair, spanning the title character's journey from the early '50s to the early '80s, and it runs the gamut of country, psychedelia, rock and soul. For one generation, the soundtrack was a great glimpse into the popular music that was playing while they were going through this thing called life. For younger kids at the time, it was a great primer of the last 30 years or so of music they missed.
Obviously, in 2011, the movie soundtrack is not what it used to be, but then again, we already covered that. Forrest Gump is just one example of a collection of screen songs that, through savvy (and sometimes ruthless) Hollywood marketing or audiences' enthusiastic embrace, breathes new life into that hoary old cliche "soundtrack of a generation."
Before Gump and The Big Chill, this was the Baby-Boomer one-stop shop for malt-shop and hot-rod nostalgia.
This is grunge minus Nirvana, heavy on the Vedder. You fill in the blanks your damn self.
Dazed & Confused (1993)
Can you think of Foghat's "Slow Ride" without thinking of this movie? That's what we thought.
Garden State (2004)
Was there a more twee soundtrack to the last decade, or one that better ushered along the ongoing evolution of the hipster into a commercial demographic?
Kids in the suburbs loved this soundtrack. Ice Cube, Dr. Dre, Scarface, and a few classic soul cuts make this a winner 16 years later.
William Shakespeare's Romeo + Juliet
In many ways, this album and film was the precursor to the phenomenon of the Twilight saga a decade later.