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That selection of music makes the film

Fiction and dream-inducing music in Wes Anderson’s Asteroid City



Writer/director Wes Anderson's ASTEROID CITY, a Focus Features release. Credit: Courtesy of Pop. 87 Productions/Focus Features

Wes Anderson’s “Asteroid City,” the first film in two years, is the nervous, meticulous attention to detail in the composition. The artwork and the impressive use of music that are the hallmarks of Anderson’s work are still present in this film.

Yuji Shibasaki, music director and music critic, explains the “dissimilar effects” of the country music and skiffle from the 1940s to the 1950s used in this film. This is the fifth installment of the series “The Music Selection Creates the Movie“.

This article contains spoilers for the movie.

Wes Anderson’s excellent use of pop music

In a previous interview, Wes Anderson said the following.

“So much emotion comes into a movie with music. When the pictures and the music come together, you never quite know what the chemistry is going to be. Sometimes it really surprises you with something that is just arresting.”


You might already know if you are a Wes Anderson fan, his films have long been acclaimed for their clever use of pop music: The Rolling Stones, The Kinks, The Who, Nick Drake, Bob Dylan, Love, Nico, Elliott Smith, and others, as well as jazz and traditional music from around the world. The wide-ranging selection of music is outstanding, not only evoking an immersive visual experience, but also allowing the audience to rediscover the hidden charm of each song. Anderson and his longtime collaborator, music supervisor Randall Poster, deserve much credit for their mastery in breaking new ground in the “use of pop music” in contemporary commercial film.

©Serge Arnal
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