The Greatest Movie Themes Films
Ultimate List
6  reranks 2,275 votes 181 voters 2,960 views more info

The Greatest Movie Themes

List Criteria: Theme music for films

A memorable movie theme song is an underrated crucial element that helps turn a great movie into an iconic one. At its core, a movie score is supposed to capture the mood and set the tone of what's going on in a particular scene. But the theme song if done right, can be as iconic as the film itself. Many film score composers set out to write a theme that fully encapsulates what a film is going for, but only a handful have become the greatest.

Perhaps the most famous film composer is John Williams, who is well represented on this list. Williams is the musical mind behind some of the greatest movie themes like Jurassic Park, Indiana Jones, Superman, Jaws and the Star Wars movies. These film scores are as memorable and iconic as the films.

Great movie themes are often instrumentals that when played, can be easily recognized. Themes from Rocky, Batman, The Godfather franchise, 2001: A Space Odyssey, E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial and Psycho are among the most recognizable songs and have long since established their place in pop culture. You can hear these songs on commercials and often times at sporting events as well.

The key element to remember as you vote on your favorite theme song is that we are only voting on the theme, not the entire score or soundtrack. This is the Ultimate List specifically for theme songs, so vote on what you think is the greatest movie them of all time. If you think a movie theme is missing, feel free to add it.

To vote on the movies with the best "mix tape" style soundtracks, not scores, check out Movies with the Best Soundtracks. For best all-around sound, vote on The Greatest Soundtracks in Film History.
List is ranked by a combination of each item's votes & positioning in reranks
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Score
  1. 37
    Up 17
    Down 6

    ranked low on reranks
    Psycho

    1960 More
    51
  2. 70
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    2004 More
    29
  3. 44
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    1997 More
    47
  4. 22
    Up 36
    Down 11
    1963 More
    58
  5. 17
    Up 47
    Down 16

    ranked low on reranks
    Mission: Impossible

    1996 More
    60
  6. 41
    Up 11
    Down 7
    1987 More
    48
  7. 57
    Up 4
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    ranked low on reranks
    The Muppet Christmas Carol

    1992 More
    33
  8. 64
    Up 2
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    1994 More
    29
    added by: WarrenMitchell
  9. 61
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    2003 More
    32
  10. 32
    Up 29
    Down 16
    2001 More
    54
  11. 54
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    often listed
    Rudy

    1993 More
    39
  12. 12
    Up 53
    Down 15
    1972 More
    70
  13. 49
    Up 11
    Down 6
    1994 More
    43
  14. 60
    Up 3
    Down 1
    1952 More
    32
  15. 1
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    1977 More
    100
  16. 63
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    2003 More
    30
  17. 33
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    54
  18. 45
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    1981 More
    46
  19. 19
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    ranked low on reranks
    Ghostbusters

    1984 More
    59
  20. 21
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    2009 More
    59
  21. 66
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    2011 More
    29
    added by: WarrenMitchell
  22. 10
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    1991 More
    70
  23. 24
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    1984 More
    56
  24. 53
    Up 14
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    1997 More
    40
  25. 56
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    often listed &ranked high on reranks
    Space Jam

    1996 More
    34
  26. 18
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    often listed &ranked high on reranks
    The Phantom of the Opera

    2004 More
    59
  27. 46
    Up 7
    Down 3
    1981 More
    45
  28. 51
    Up 8
    Down 7
    1981 More
    41
  29. 23
    Up 32
    Down 11
    1978 More
    57
  30. 7
    Up 61
    Down 14
    1976 More
    78
  31. 40
    Up 16
    Down 10
    1990 More
    49
  32. 34
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    1982 More
    53
  33. 42
    Up 11
    Down 8
    1963 More
    48
  34. 20
    Up 21
    Down 9
    1960 More
    59
  35. 59
    Up 2
    Down 0
    1990 More
    33
  36. 30
    Up 19
    Down 16
    1991 More
    55
  37. 52
    Up 4
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    2012 More
    40
  38. 39
    Up 19
    Down 10
    1995 More
    50
  39. 29
    Up 17
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    1992 More
    55
  40. 16
    Up 21
    Down 10
    1982 More
    60
  41. 31
    Up 15
    Down 10
    1987 More
    54
  42. 50
    Up 13
    Down 10
    1995 More
    43
  43. 58
    Up 2
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    2001 More
    33
  44. 4
    Up 60
    Down 20
    1978 More
    84
  45. 36
    Up 9
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    1979 More
    52
  46. 25
    Up 13
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    often listed &ranked high on reranks
    Blade Runner

    1982 More
    56
  47. 15
    Up 27
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    2000 More
    60
  48. 8
    Up 53
    Down 15
    1985 More
    77
  49. 38
    Up 10
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    often listed &ranked high on reranks
    Independence Day

    1996 More
    51
  50. 62
    Up 0
    Down 0
    1986 More
    31
  51. 71 +

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