Movies and music go together like Chico and the Man. When used right, the music accentuates the action onscreen. When used poorly, the music makes me dropkick the nearest usher and throw him down the fire escape.


This list is comprised of songs overused by the laziest bastards in Hollywood. It is by no means definitive. Some songs I left out, and many others I simply missed. Let me hear about said omissions in the comments below.


OK? Let’s do this.



10. “What a Wonderful World” by Sir Louis Armstrong


I’m not dissing Mr. Armstrong. The man is a fucking legend.


The song is okay, but I’m just sick of being beat over the head with it; especially in the ironic sense.


Oh, look! The world is being destroyed in slow-motion while “What a Wonderful World” plays in the background. How clever!


No, it isn’t.


9. Anything by the Beatles


Yeah, we’re talking about legends again. Don’t get your panties in a bunch.


Needless to say, the Beatles are talented motherfuckers. But if you’re going to stick their songs into your movie, it will likely jar the audience right out of your film. They’re just too iconic; engraved into the psyche of anyone even vaguely literate in pop culture. So just don’t do it.


And John Lennon’s “Imagine” can suck it. I DON’T CARE WHAT YOU SAY!


8. “How to Save a Life” by The Fray


All done legend talk. This band sucks, and this song sucks even harder.


Okay, maybe that isn’t fair. They both suck equally.


How many hospital montages use this crap to accentuate the hot medical action? Too many. Hell, *one* is too many. Like Coy and Vance, this is a piece of pop culture that should be wiped from the history books, along with the majority of hospital montages.


7. “No More Mr. Nice Guy” by Alice Cooper (or worse, by Megadeth)


I dig Alice Cooper. Well, at least some of his work. This song, however, is awful.


Also, like “How to Save a Life,” I hate songs that can be literally translated into the action onscreen. Yes, I get it. They’re saving a life. Oh, the serial killer survived electrocution and is about to exact grisly revenge, hence he’s no longer a nice guy.


Thank you, movie. I love being treated like a moron.



6. “The Measure of a Man” by Elton John


Okay, maybe this song was only featured in ROCKY 5, but that’s enough.


Elton John must be stopped.


And while we’re on the topic, for the love of all that’s good and holy: Don’t let Sly sing, either.



5. “Saturday Night Fever” by Bee Gees


Usually this is utilized for “comic effect,” featuring a chubby Caucasian with two left feet dancing in an inappropriate venue (office cubicle, daughter’s prom, on the living room couch, etcetera). Toss a little “Saturday Night Fever” into anything and the hilarity is tripled. Don’t forget the finale with a patented Travolta point-to-the-sky! COMIC GOLD!


Now kill yourself.



4. “Bad Reputation” by Joan Jett


Another lazy montage song, usually coinciding with something along the lines of Dennis the Menace tossing bologna on Mr. Wilson’s car.


Tired gags for a tired song.




3. “Fortunate Son” by Creedence Clearwater Revival


Vietnam lasted for many years. “Fortunate Son” couldn’t have been the only song released at that time.


“Fortunate Son” is a classic, and really sets the tone for the craziness of that era. That said, you need to spread the wealth. Give poor John Fogerty the night off.



2. “Let My Love Open the Door” by Pete Townshend


This particular number can be used in a variety of ways, yet the common denominator will always be evil. I think the most frustrating aspect is how talented Pete Townsend is, yet *this* is the song people always utilize from his impressive catalog.


Use “Squeezebox” in your romantic comedy. Or maybe “Boris the Spider.”



1. “Bad to the Bone” by George Thorogood and the Destroyers


Last, and most certainly least, is George “I Drink Alone” Thorogood’s “Bad to the Bone.” Apparently, this song is simply perfect for a montage. As a matter of fact, it’s apparently perfect for every fucking montage in every fucking film on fucking planet Earth. Said montages usually end with bad guys wrapped from head to foot in dental floss, and either a precocious child and/or pet wearing oversized sunglasses.


Fuck you, Hollywood.



Jon Abrams

Editor-In-Chief at Daily Grindhouse
Jon Abrams is a New York-based writer, cartoonist, and committed cinemaniac whose complete work and credits can be found at his site, Demon’s Resume. You can contact him on Twitter as @JonZilla___.
Please Share


  • Reply
    Jon Abrams Author
    July 19, 2012

    Great topic. For me, number one with a hail of bullets HAS to be “Gimme Some Lovin'” by The Spencer Davis Group. Blue-eyed soul for white-people movies. Here it is in WILD HOGS:

    Seriously, check out how many godforsaken times this song has been overused and abused:

    That doesn’t even include how many times it’s popped up in trailers!

  • Reply
    July 19, 2012

    “Everybody Wants to Rule the World” – Tears for Fears

  • Reply
    July 19, 2012

    The End by The Doors. Great song, awesome band but enough use in films now. Especially parodies.

Leave a Comment