10 Incredibly Surprising Film Soundtracks

Whether a bombastic symphonic score or a collection of pop hits, we generally know what’s in store when we settle in for a night of watching movies. Some of the most rewarding cinematic experiences, however, come from cases where our soundtrack expectations are upended. Often, this can come from an unlikely marriage of songs to image; at other times, the choice of composer might fall outside of the expected pool. What follows is a list of ten films whose soundtracks don’t behave expected — and are all the more memorable for it.

Twixt (2011)
Director: Francis Ford Coppola
Score: Dan Deacon

Francis Ford Coppola’s recent return to filmmaking has been characterized by a welcome willingness to take risks. He’s worked with low budgets and taken a distinctively philosophical approach, and in doing so tapped into the same strain of creativity that prompted (say) the haunting ambiguity of The Conversation — to say nothing of his efforts as a producer of films by the likes of Wim Wenders, Paul Schrader, and Akira Kurosawa.

2007’s Youth Without Youth boasted a score from the stylistically divergent Argentinian composer Osvaldo Golijov. For Twixt, Coppola settled on an even more unlikely choice: Baltimore’s Dan Deacon, who seems determined to be a one-man bridge uniting the pop, compositional, and experimental worlds. Deacon’s experience in concert may also have played a role in this, as Coppola will reportedly be taking Twixt on the road for a series of live iterations of the film. These will involve Coppola manipulating his cut of the film and Deacon providing a live soundtrack.