Sound Track As Narrator: Review of The Wrestler

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There is not a constant soundtrack in the movie The Wrestler (2008). There are a lot of times of silence. This lends to the documentary feel that the over-the-shoulder camera angles and shots of Mickey Rourke’s back add as well. However, when there is a song playing, it feels to be of great import. The songs are great transitions between scenes and indeed, between moments in The Wrestler’s life. Thus, I say the sound track is actually the narrator of the story. When the movie begins, there is a montage showing The Wrestler, Randy “The Ram,” at the height of his career. The song that is playing says “I want to be overrated,” foreshadowing Randy’s fall from fame, the hype can only last for so long. Forward to the present, and the song says “You don’t know what you’ve got til it’s gone,” how Randy took his fame for granted and is now living in a trailer park, and sometimes his own van. I don’t want to give away everything that happens in the movie, so I’ll stop there with the examples, but here is the soundtrack listing:

  • “(Bang Your Head) Metal Health”( Quiet Riot)
  • “Don’t Know What You Got (Till It’s Gone)”(Cinderella)
  • “Round and Round” (Ratt (as Rat Attack))
  • “Balls To The Wall” (Accept)
  • “Sweet Child O’ Mine”( Guns N’ Roses)
  • “Animal Magnetism”(Scorpions)
  • “Jump”( Madonna)
  • “N2 Sumthin'”( Takbir Bashir)
  • “Don’t Walk Away”(Firehouse)
  • “Soundtrack to a War”( Rhino Bucket)
  • “Nice Guys Finish First”(Joey Johnson)
  • “8-bit Wrestler”(Joel Feinberg)
  • “Just Let Your Freak Out”(Deesha Sarai featuring Critical Child)
  • “Mirror”(Dead Family)
  • “No Bitterz”(Miss TK & The Revenge)
  • “Stuntin’ Like My Daddy” (Birdman and Lil’ Wayne)
  • “Dodge It”( Samsaya)
  • “Her Name Is Alice”(The Days The Nights)
  • “Hit Da Flo”( Trai’d)
  • “Dangerous”(Slaughter)
  • “Black Light”(Macon Greyson)
  • “I’m Insane”(Ratt)
  • “The Muscle”(Bone Crusher)
  • “Jerk It”(Thunderheist)
  • “Aloha Oa (Queen Lilluokalani)”( Robert Neary)
  • “Blowin’ Up” (Solomon)
  • “30 Stars” (Peter Walker)
  • “The Wrestler” (Bruce Springsteen)

Other small things worth noting about the movie– Mickey Rourke cries, really powerful; realistic relationships–complex, not black and white; by the end i found myself wanting the exact opposite outcomes to happen at the same time– wanting him not to do it vs wanting to see him succeed. And fade to black. Cue Bruce Springsteen…..

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