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Top 10 uses of songs in comedy movies

Matt Merlino, Graphic Designer

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Music is one of the most underappreciated aspects of piecing together a film. This can be said specifically when dealing with creating a comedy. A song can either make or break a scene, infusing gut-busting laughs or majorly striking out.

I have taken the liberty to compile a list of the greatest uses of songs in film for comedic value alone. I am not going to include movie theme songs in this list because there’s no fun in that. So without further ado, here are my top 10 songs in comedy films.

  1. “Kiss You All Over” – Exile – Happy Gilmore

 This scene is great. Who wouldn’t want to be serenaded by this song through an apartment building intercom? No one? I thought so.

  1. “Bohemian Rhapsody” – Queen – Wayne’s World

 This scene comes in at the ninth spot because I am ranking based on comedic value. I would prefer to sing along rather than laugh, but it still deserves a spot on the list. Every guy has recreated this scene while driving with their friends.

  1. “Tequila” – The Champs – The Sandlot

 It was difficult to choose which song from The Sandlot would make the list, but “Tequila” was the final decision. Tequila and puke just fit together, and the filmmakers made a perfect choice when they had this song playing during the carnival scene.

  1. “Moving In Stereo” – The Cars – Fast Times at Ridgemont High

 This movie often gets overlooked, but that doesn’t take away the fact that it has some of the most hilariously subtle moments in any movie I’ve watched.  Judge Reinhold really practices his backstroke in this unforgettable pool scene.

  1. “Mockingbird” – Charles Foxx & Inez Foxx – Dumb & Dumber

 This song was also used in a similar scene in National Lampoon’s Vacation, but Dumb & Dumber capitalizes on the insanity of Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels to earn a spot on the list. I would not want to be in a car with those two for an extended period of time, that’s for sure.

  1. “Telephone Line” – Electric Light Orchestra – Billy Madison

This scene is why Billy Madison is my favorite movie; Steve Buscemi putting on lipstick. It’s so utterly weird and hilarious, and I absolutely love it. Billy, I’m glad you called that guy.

  1. “Help Yourself” – Tom Jones – Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy

 I friggin’ love this scene! Will Ferrell and Christina Applegate go on a crazy, green screened sex journey to Pleasure Town, and there’s no other song I could imagine fitting the scene more perfectly.

  1. “Stayin’ Alive” – The Bee Gees – Airplane!

 This is one of the most iconic comedy scenes, leading to it being parodied in many other later works. The dance moves are so cheesy and just plain wonderful. The costumes and sound effects add to the hilarity of an already great scene.

  1. “(What A) Wonderful World” – Sam Cooke & “Let’s Dance” – Jim Lee – Animal House

 “FOOD FIGHT!” When talking about comedy movies, you can’t possibly leave out Animal House. These two songs come together to create one of the most hilarious scenes ever. John Belushi is at his finest, while the rest of the cast is on point. This combination would have taken the number one spot if it weren’t for…

  1. “Mr. Night” – Kenny Loggins – Caddyshack

I don’t know what it is, but pool scenes always have great song selection. Caddyshack has one of the all around best soundtracks, and that is largely in part due to “Mr. Soundtrack,” Kenny Loggins. “Mr. Night” may not be the most popular song from the movie, but it definitely helps generate the most laughs. The scene is pure comedic brilliance! Cindy Morgan’s entrance and the reactions by all of the men is why this song garners the top spot on the list.

Honorable Mentions:

“Tom Sawyer” – Rush – I Love You, Man

“This Magic Moment” – The Drifters – The Sandlot
“Aquarius/Let the Sunshine In” – The Fifth Dimension – The 40 Year Old Virgin

“Afternoon Delight” – Starland Vocal Band – Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy

“Inside of You” – Infant Sorrow – Forgetting Sarah Marshall

“Canned Heat” – Jamiroquai – Napoleon Dynamite

Do you agree with this list? Let me know what you think in the comments below.

 

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