Five Favourite Films for Sound

Wall-E – Votes:18 (IMDB + trailer)
Star Wars IV – Votes:14 (IMDB + trailer)
Apocalypse Now – Votes:11 (IMDB + trailer)
The Matrix – Votes:10 (IMDB + trailer)
Eraserhead – Votes:9 (IMDB + trailer)
No Country For Old Men – Votes:9 (IMDB + trailer)
Saving Private Ryan – Votes:9 (IMDB + trailer)
Delicatessen – Votes:6 (IMDB + trailer)
Lord of the Rings – Votes:6 (IMDB + trailer)
The Conversation – Votes:6 (IMDB + trailer)
Children of Men – Votes:5 (IMDB + trailer)
Das Boot – Votes:5 (IMDB + trailer)
Jurassic Park – Votes:5 (IMDB + trailer)
2001: A Space Odyssey – Votes:4 (IMDB + trailer)
Barton Fink – Votes:4 (IMDB + trailer)
Elephant – Votes:4 (IMDB + trailer)
Fight Club – Votes:4 (IMDB + trailer)
Lost Highway – Votes:4 (IMDB + trailer)
Pi – Votes:4 (IMDB + trailer)
Stalker – Votes:4 (IMDB + trailer)
Star Trek – Votes:4 (IMDB + trailer)
Touch the Sound – Votes:4 (IMDB + trailer)
Bladerunner – Votes:3 (IMDB + trailer)
Castaway – Votes:3 (IMDB + trailer)
Cloverfield – Votes:3 (IMDB + trailer)
Damnation – Votes:3 (IMDB + trailer)
PlayTime – Votes:3 (IMDB + trailer)
Ratatouille – Votes:3 (IMDB + trailer)
Seven – Votes:3 (IMDB + trailer)
The Black Stallion – Votes:3 (IMDB + trailer)
The English Patient – Votes:3 (IMDB + trailer)
There Will Be Blood – Votes:3 (IMDB + trailer)
THX-1138 – Votes:3 (IMDB + trailer)
Transformers 2 – Votes:3 (IMDB + trailer)
Alien – Votes:2 (IMDB + trailer)
Blue Velvet – Votes:2 (IMDB + trailer)
Contact – Votes:2 (IMDB + trailer)
Forbidden Planet – Votes:2 (IMDB + trailer)
House of Flying Daggers – Votes:2 (IMDB + trailer)
Hukkle – Votes:2 (IMDB + trailer)
Hunger – Votes:2 (IMDB + trailer)
Idi i smotri – Votes:2 (IMDB + trailer)
Inland Empire – Votes:2 (IMDB + trailer)
Last Days – Votes:2 (IMDB + trailer)
Once Upon a Time in the West – Votes:2 (IMDB + trailer)
Punch Drunk Love – Votes:2 (IMDB + trailer)
Rumble Fish – Votes:2 (IMDB + trailer)
Solaris – Votes:2 (IMDB + trailer)
Songs from the Second Floor – Votes:2 (IMDB + trailer)
Terminator 2 – Votes:2 (IMDB + trailer)
The Exorcist – Votes:2 (IMDB + trailer)
The Incredibles – Votes:2 (IMDB + trailer)
Transformers – Votes:2 (IMDB + trailer)
8 1/2 – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
A Bugs Life – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
A Touch of Evil – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
American Graffiti – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Baraka – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Batman – Dark Knight – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Bhoot – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Braveheart – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Breaking the Waves – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Bridges of Madison County – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
City of Lost Children – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Clean, Shaven – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Collateral – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Control – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Deathproof – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Dreaming of Space – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Du Rififi Chez Les Hommes – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
El Topo – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Event Horizon – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Flash Gordon – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Forrest Gump – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Gandhi My Father – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Gerry – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Ghost in the Shell – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Gladiator – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Godzilla vs. Monster Zero – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Hollywood Confidential – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
I’m a Cyborg, But That’s OK – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Kill Bill – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
King Kong – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
La Cienaga – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
La Vie Moderne – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Little Miss Sunshine – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Lost in Translation – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
M – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Magnolia – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Man On Fire – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Manhunter – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Memento – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Men in Black – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Microcosmos – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Never Cry Wolf – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Old Boy – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Pan’s Labyrinth – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Repulsion – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Requiem For A Dream – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Ringu – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Road to Perdition – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Seraphine – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Silence of Lambs – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Snatch – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Solaris (2002) – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Squirm – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Star Wars II – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Star Wars V – The Empire Strikes Back – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Sunshine – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
The Assassination of Richard Nixon – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
The Banishment – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
The Fountain – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
The Game – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
The Girlfriend Experience – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
The Godfather – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
The Iron Giant – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
The Lives of Others – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
The Mirror – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
The Others – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
The Ring – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
The Road to Perdition – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
The Sacrifice – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
The Shining – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
The World’s Fastest Indian – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Thin Red Line – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Tony Takitani – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Toy Story – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Toy Story 2 – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Vengo – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
War of the Worlds – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Woman of the Dunes – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
You, The Living – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)
Zodiac – Votes:1 (IMDB + trailer)

Current number of voters: 61

What are your five favourite films for sound? Have a think, submit your selection and I’ll maintain a running database of votes & update this post as needed… Listed above are all the films chosen by the 17 people applying for virtual mentoring, plus my five… What are yours?

[contact-form 3 “Submit Five Films for Sound”]

21 thoughts on “Five Favourite Films for Sound

  1. admin Post author

    Its interesting thinking about what makes a film have “good sound” – undoubtedly it involves a lot of skill & creativity on all of the sound crews part, but I think more important is:
    – the script
    – the director

    Its interesting to note recurring names in the above list in the role of director (eg David Lynch, PT Anderson, George Lucas, David Finch, Gus van Sant) and perhaps more predictably, in the role of sound designer (Walter Murch, Ben Burtt, Randy Thom)

    1. brendan j hogan

      Along those lines, is our perception of “good sound” tied up with our perception of a “good movie”? Are there movies we don’t like but still consider to have good sound? There are movies I can think of that I appreciate the technical excellence of the sound (mostly blockbuster action movies) but I don’t love the sound the way I love the sound in movies I connect with.

  2. admin Post author

    updated 13th July with votes from Greg Sextro, Phil Benson, Steve Gallagher, Buck Sander, Peter Albrechtsen, Sonal Dsliva, Mike Peter Reed

  3. admin Post author

    updated 14th with votes from Rene, Svenn Jakobsen, Sebastian Orban, Tae, James Hoskin, Ayush Ahuja

  4. admin Post author

    updated 14th July with votes from: Sebastien Orban, Svenn Jakobsen, Rene, Markus, John Evans, Gustavo Costantini, Ryan Wrubleski, JR Fountain, Enrique Deschutter, Paul Neyrinck, Andy Brannan, Beni, Carez, Andrew, Matt Cavanaugh, Elliott Malone

  5. Danijel Milosevic

    Hmmm, isn’t it incredible that “Touch the Sound”, a small documentary with arthouse-only distribution, is currently in front of the likes of THX-1138, Fight Club, Terminator 2, Exorcist, and another hundred of finest-sound movies of all times!?

    If someone can enlighten me, how come so many people have seen it?

    For those of you who haven’t, there’s the whole thing on youtube, but consider it a preview only, because a movie such as this suffers a lot from low fidelity, even if you watch it in “HQ”:

  6. Danijel Milosevic

    Oh, never mind – I see it has been featured on this very blog in February….

    A piece of trivia (and this is not even listed on IMDB):
    Fred Frith, a musician featured in this film has provided ambiental music which has become an interesting part of sound design for Gerry by Gus Van Sant.

  7. jayadevan

    i would like to draw your attention to the Indian films. There are very good works of film sound in India. To name a few sound designers here who really excel in their craft like Dwarak Warrier, Resul Pookkutty, Dilip Subrahmaniam and many more. After this years Oscar, Bollywood is understanding the scope of sound design in film.

  8. admin Post author

    Thanks Jayadevan, thats exactly what I feel this list is for ie making us all aware of films we should see/hear. And thanks for your votes – I’ll be checking out the films I havent seen too!

  9. admin Post author

    updated 15th July with votes from: Tom Ackroyd, Nick Read, Manuel Laval, Jen Ralston, Olivier Calvert, Ian Palmer, Jfriah, Jayadevan Chakkadath, Daniel Colman, Jeffrey

  10. admin Post author

    updated 20th July with votes from Miguel, Phil Valera, Tim Chaproniere, Olga Bulygo, Vicente Villaescusa, Vytis Puronas, Steven Ghouti, Matteo Millani

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  12. James Sutcliffe

    hello. I’m not sure if you’re still adding to the list but thought I might as well put mine forward any way…

    1. Apocalypse Now

    Barton Fink


    Raging Bull

    Terminator 2

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  14. tim Post author

    just a note for anyone submitting films from now on – I will add your selection, but will wait until I have a dozen or so new submissions to recompile the list – apologies for the delay in your votes appearing. Feel free to paste them here as a comment in the meantime…

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  16. robin

    Hmmm… is this supposed to be a vote for sound effects, sound design, music or all three? Because there are some entries I am quite sure would not have been chosen unless music was the main criteria. For example Forbidden Planet and The Shining are dominated by their music (in a good way, of course).

    And if that is indeed the case, has everyone forgotten The Andromeda Strain?

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