Saturday, January 3, 2009

Music on film: The Office

Have you ever noticed how a song can sound even better in a film or on television? For example, in Slumdog Millionaire, M.I.A.'s "Paper Planes" came on, and though I'm sick of that song (along with everyone in the world, probably) I didn't mind hearing it too much as a part of the soundtrack. It just seemed to fit.

Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant understand this phenomenon. In the holiday special for The Office, the final scenes take place in the office during the Christmas party. Naturally, as there is a DJ, there is always background music. Not only do the writers move the story along, but they also give us a sort-of crash course in really popular 80s-90s British music. In the most heart-wrenching scene, The Spice Girls and Take That provide the soundtrack with inexplicable success. I'm not a fan of the Spice Girls, sure, and I hadn't heard "Back for Good" in many years, but while watching this scene, I kind of dug it. Man, I like the Take That song. And the lyrics comment on the onscreen drama. Very nicely done, blokes.

Don't watch it if you haven't seen the series and still intend to. It kind of blows everything.

Gervais and Merchant continue to work their magic on Extras. Hint: England's biggest 80s and 90s melodramatic and possibly celibate singer makes a soundtrack appearance.

I might just like the BBC Office better than its American counterpart. I wish they would have made more. Cheers.

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