The Greatest Movie Themes Films
Ultimate List
6  reranks 2,269 votes 180 voters 2,881 views by  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. 12
    Up 34
    Down 15
    1968 More
    71
  2. 54
    Up 13
    Down 4

    20th Century Fox Fanfare

    37
  3. 32
    Up 16
    Down 8
    1964 More
    54
  4. 35
    Up 9
    Down 10
    1979 More
    52
  5. 8
    Up 53
    Down 15
    1985 More
    78
  6. 9
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    Down 15
    1989 More
    73
  7. 30
    Up 13
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    1982 More
    55
  8. 41
    Up 19
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    1995 More
    49
  9. 38
    Up 23
    Down 13
    1981 More
    50
  10. 33
    Up 12
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    1982 More
    54
  11. 58
    Up 2
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    1990 More
    34
  12. 14
    Up 27
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    1982 More
    64
  13. 51
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    1981 More
    42
  14. 36
    Up 7
    Down 3
    1981 More
    51
  15. 44
    Up 8
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    1982 More
    48
  16. 40
    Up 10
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    1965 More
    50
  17. 22
    Up 40
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    ranked low on reranks
    Ghostbusters

    1984 More
    59
  18. 16
    Up 27
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    often listed &ranked high on reranks
    Gladiator

    2000 More
    63
  19. 21
    Up 32
    Down 11
    1978 More
    60
  20. 26
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    Down 16
    2001 More
    57
  21. 61
    Up 3
    Down 1
    1952 More
    33
  22. 37
    Up 10
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    often listed &ranked high on reranks
    Independence Day

    1996 More
    51
  23. 2
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    Down 7
    1981 More
    96
  24. 3
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    Down 9
    1999 More
    84
  25. 11
    Up 55
    Down 10
    1975 More
    71
  26. 5
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    Down 14
    1993 More
    83
  27. 69
    Up 1
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    2004 More
    30
  28. 47
    Up 15
    Down 12
    1997 More
    45
  29. 19
    Up 46
    Down 16

    ranked low on reranks
    Mission: Impossible

    1996 More
    60
  30. 46
    Up 13
    Down 10
    1995 More
    46
  31. 28
    Up 32
    Down 19
    57
  32. 68
    Up 2
    Down 3
    2003 More
    31
  33. 39
    Up 17
    Down 6

    ranked low on reranks
    Psycho

    1960 More
    50
  34. 25
    Up 19
    Down 16
    1991 More
    57
  35. 34
    Up 15
    Down 10
    1987 More
    53
  36. 7
    Up 61
    Down 14
    1976 More
    78
  37. 56
    Up 2
    Down 7

    often listed
    Rudy

    1993 More
    36
  38. 55
    Up 5
    Down 13

    often listed &ranked high on reranks
    Space Jam

    1996 More
    36
  39. 48
    Up 15
    Down 10
    2002 More
    45
  40. 15
    Up 31
    Down 9
    2009 More
    63
  41. 18
    Up 21
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    often listed &ranked high on reranks
    Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan

    1982 More
    62
  42. 1
    Up 100
    Down 8
    1977 More
    100
  43. 64
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    2011 More
    33
    added by: WarrenMitchell
  44. 4
    Up 60
    Down 20
    1978 More
    84
  45. 13
    Up 41
    Down 18
    1991 More
    71
  46. 63
    Up 1
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    1984 More
    33
    added by: WarrenMitchell
  47. 53
    Up 4
    Down 9
    2012 More
    37
  48. 62
    Up 1
    Down 0
    33
    added by: wiabux
  49. 31
    Up 20
    Down 11
    1973 More
    54
  50. 59
    Up 2
    Down 0
    1994 More
    34
    added by: WarrenMitchell
  51. 71 +

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