The Greatest Movie Themes Films
Ultimate List
7  reranks 2,636 votes 202 voters 3,454 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
  • 7 ReRanks
  • See list ranked by
</> Rerank List
Score
  1. 63
    Up 3
    Down 5
    2003 More
    28
  2. 46
    Up 11
    Down 6
    1982 More
    48
  3. 10
    Up 57
    Down 16
    1989 More
    73
  4. 5
    Up 65
    Down 23
    1978 More
    84
  5. 2
    Up 93
    Down 10
    1981 More
    97
  6. 45
    Up 17
    Down 14
    1997 More
    48
  7. 44
    Up 16
    Down 13
    2002 More
    49
  8. 73
    Up 1
    Down 3
    2011 More
    23
    added by: WarrenMitchell
  9. 50
    Up 7
    Down 6
    1981 More
    44
  10. 43
    Up 17
    Down 14
    1990 More
    49
  11. 19
    Up 51
    Down 18
    1996 More
    61
  12. 55
    Up 14
    Down 13
    1995 More
    40
  13. 32
    Up 15
    Down 14

    often listed &ranked high on reranks
    Conan the Barbarian

    1982 More
    56
  14. 39
    Up 11
    Down 15

    often listed &ranked high on reranks
    Independence Day

    1996 More
    51
  15. 57
    Up 2
    Down 2
    2003 More
    38
  16. 13
    Up 45
    Down 21
    1991 More
    70
  17. 62
    Up 2
    Down 3
    2001 More
    28
  18. 8
    Up 57
    Down 19
    1985 More
    77
  19. 22
    Up 34
    Down 11
    2009 More
    60
  20. 1
    Up 107
    Down 11
    1977 More
    100
  21. 11
    Up 40
    Down 16
    1968 More
    72
  22. 60
    Up 5
    Down 16

    often listed &ranked high on reranks
    Space Jam

    1996 More
    31
  23. 61
    Up 5
    Down 2
    1992 More
    30
  24. 71
    Up 2
    Down 2
    26
    added by: Kaloy
  25. 4
    Up 99
    Down 9
    1999 More
    85
  26. 16
    Up 46
    Down 13
    1984 More
    63
  27. 37
    Up 16
    Down 14
    1987 More
    54
  28. 12
    Up 60
    Down 16
    1972 More
    72
  29. 48
    Up 14
    Down 7
    1994 More
    46
  30. 72
    Up 2
    Down 3
    1994 More
    25
    added by: WarrenMitchell
  31. 67
    Up 1
    Down 0
    1996 More
    27
    added by: dee123
  32. 20
    Up 41
    Down 13
    1963 More
    61
  33. 74
    Up 1
    Down 3
    1984 More
    23
    added by: WarrenMitchell
  34. 14
    Up 29
    Down 14
    1982 More
    66
  35. 24
    Up 25
    Down 11
    1973 More
    58
  36. 69
    Up 1
    Down 3
    1986 More
    26
  37. 41
    Up 26
    Down 16
    1981 More
    50
  38. 18
    Up 31
    Down 18

    often listed &ranked high on reranks
    Gladiator

    2000 More
    61
  39. 25
    Up 16
    Down 16
    1982 More
    58
  40. 54
    Up 3
    Down 9

    often listed
    Rudy

    1993 More
    40
  41. 36
    Up 30
    Down 19
    2001 More
    54
  42. 7
    Up 67
    Down 19
    1993 More
    80
  43. 42
    Up 14
    Down 9
    1987 More
    50
  44. 68
    Up 1
    Down 0
    1982 More
    27
    added by: dee123
  45. 35
    Up 12
    Down 11
    1979 More
    54
  46. 65
    Up 1
    Down 0
    1980 More
    27
    added by: dee123
  47. 9
    Up 60
    Down 11
    1975 More
    73
  48. 66
    Up 1
    Down 0
    1984 More
    27
    added by: dee123
  49. 26
    Up 26
    Down 17
    1984 More
    58
  50. 17
    Up 37
    Down 11
    1978 More
    62
  51. 75 +

    Something missing? Add it!

Is this list missing something?
RANKERS WHO ADDED ITEMS

items 1 - 50 of 74

think you can do better?

Rerank This List
why?

got a blog or website?

embed this list
why?

viewers of this list also saw

more popular lists