This list started as a top 10, but I could not force myself to stop there. Certain directors are particularly good at pulling soundtracks together. I could easily expand my list by just further considering David Lynch and Stanley Kubrick films.

My top 12 (in no particular order):

  1. Joe Strummer: The Future is Unwritten (Elvis's "Crawfish"; Strummer's "Johnny Appleseed"; etc., etc.)
  2. Dead Man Walking (sonic quality is excellent)
  3. The Apostle (another sonic gem)
  4. Juno (Sonic Youth; Kimya Dawson; The Kinks; etc.)
  5. Trainspotting (Iggy Pop; Lou Reed; New Order; etc.
  6. Twin Peaks (as stated above, Lynch has a number of outstanding soundtracks, especially those featuring Angelo Badalamenti)
  7. O Brother Where Art Thou? (great sonic quality and some cool spirituals)
  8. Thin Red Line (spooky)
  9. Pat Garrett & Billy the Kid (one of my favorite Bob Dylan albums)
  10. Into the Wild (Eddie Vedder is one of my favorite vocalist)
  11. Mad Men Christmas (the TV show has numerous great songs peppered throughout the seasons)
  12. Where the Wild Things Are (Karen O's cover of "Worried Shoes" by Daniel Johnston is incredible and a stark contrast to his version)
Again, I could go on and on, but those represent some of my favorites.

Great topic!! I’d include Singles soundtrack. Very strong. Also Pulp Fiction and Reservoir Dogs. The Graduate is also a classic, not to mention Purple Rain. I’m not a disco guy but Saturday Night Fever was a good one. I’m also quite fond of High Fidelity, the soundtrack and the movie (highly recommended). 8 Mile is also pretty great.

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I own about half of those that you name. Reservoir Dogs is one of my favorite movies, but have not listened to the soundtrack. I will give it a try.

I really like the concept of soundtracks. You may buy one for a couple songs in particular but find a number of others in the process. Then those can lead to bands, albums, etc.

The “Garden State” soundtrack. Who knew Zach Braff was a great music curator?

Baby Driver! Super fun movie and killer soundtrack. Hard to argue the soundtrack isn’t a real soundtrack and not an “influenced by” thing. The music is integral to the movie. Take a loved one for a night out at a good sounding theater. Great fun!

Amsco15, I saw baby driver with my family. You are right. The music was nearly a character in the movie. My wife told me that a dance choreographer coordinated the stunt scenes. A modern day musical?

Also, any soundtracks by Nick Cave & Warren Ellis.
Grizzly Man soundtrack by Richard Thompsonis is very good.

When Harry met Sally, Harry Connick Jr. covers some great songs. (Very Good Sonics).