Two of the best films of the year also happen to feature two of the best soundtracks of the year and as each enters a wide release today, the scores are now available to stream in full. Wes Anderson’s Asteroid City boasts an epic soundtrack of 25 songs amounting to over 70 minutes, featuring Alexandre Desplat, Jarvis Cocker, Big Crosby, Les Paul, Burl Ives, Tex Ritter, Les Baxter, and many more.
Then, Grizzly Bear’s Christopher Bear and Daniel Rossen reunited to score Celine Song’s debut Past Lives, clocking in at 16 tracks around 40 minutes, also including the end credits track “Quiet Eyes” by Sharon Van Etten and Zachary Dawes. “What a pleasure it was to score this film with [Rossen] and make music I feel very connected with,” said Bear. “Celine Song is a force and had such incredible vision and execution.”
Luke Hicks said in his Cannes review of Asteroid City, “A sultry, creamy western that feels more like a vacation, Asteroid City is an absolute delight, Anderson’s best since The Grand Budapest Hotel. It practically begs you to sit back, relax, and enjoy yourself. Hell, it might even want you to take a nap, but not for lack of entertainment. As the characters of Asteroid City know all too well, “You can’t wake up if you don’t fall asleep.” Remember that.”
I said in my Sundance review of Past Lives, “Whether miniscule or major, the millions of decisions we make form the winding path of our lives. Specific reasons for taking certain forks in the road can often be lost to the sea of time, swelling back up only as our memory allows. A triptych not-quite-romance crossing nearly a quarter-century, playwright Celine Song’s directorial debut Past Lives examines such universal experience with keen cultural specificity, telling the story of childhood friends who twice reconnect later in life. It’s a warm, patient film culminating in a quietly powerful, reflective finale, though its sum is greater than its parts when the first two sections register a touch underdeveloped.”
Listen to both below, and watch a video on the making of the musical performance in Asteroid City.