film The Greatest Film Scores of All Time

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List Rules "Film score" refers to the instrumental background music that plays throughout the movie, not the soundtrack

This list contains greatest movie themes and scores ever recorded, chosen by the Ranker community. (NOTE: This list is for film SCORES, the instrumental music from movies. We also have a list of The Greatest Movie Soundtracks, designed for collections of songs taken from films.) These are the most iconic, memorable themes and collections of background music ever.

Film scores also include dialogue and special effects. This means you should rank the film scores on how important you think they were in delivering the atmosphere the film was trying to achieve?
 

1
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Star Wars is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
Star Wars Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher Mark Hamill

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2
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The Lord of the Rings film tri... is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time

3
+ - 1,566 1,356
Indiana Jones and the Raiders ... is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark Harrison Ford, Alfred Molina Karen Allen

4
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Forrest Gump is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
Forrest Gump Tom Hanks, Kurt Russell Sally Field

5
+ - 1,525 1,278
The Good, the Bad and the Ugly is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
The Good, The Bad & The Ugly Clint Eastwood, Viggo Mortensen Mark Strong

6
+ - 1,355 1,292
The Godfather is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
The Godfather Al Pacino, Marlon Brando Robert Duvall

7
+ - 936 997
Superman is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
Superman Marlon Brando, Gene Hackman Christopher Reeve

8
+ - 995 779
Rocky is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
Rocky Sylvester Stallone, Joe Frazier Burgess Meredith

9
+ - 1,239 793
The Lion King is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
The Lion King Whoopi Goldberg, Jeremy Irons Matthew Broderick

10
+ - 1,186 1,067
Jaws is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
Jaws Steven Spielberg, Richard Dreyfuss Roy Scheider

11
+ - 762 447
E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial Drew Barrymore, Erika Eleniak Debra Winger

12
+ - 824 705
Back to the Future is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
Back to the Future Michael J. Fox, Christopher Lloyd Lea Thompson

13
+ - 699 593
Lawrence of Arabia is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
Lawrence of Arabia Omar Sharif, Peter O'Toole Alec Guinness

14
+ - 1,597 1,052
Jurassic Park is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
Jurassic Park Samuel L. Jackson, Jeff Goldblum Richard Attenborough

15
+ - 1,397 1,094
Inception is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
Inception Leonardo DiCaprio, Tom Hardy Marion Cotillard

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16
+ - 990 477
Ranker Video v
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone Emma Watson, Daniel Radcliffe Julianne Hough

17
+ - 910 414
Braveheart is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
Braveheart Mel Gibson, Sophie Marceau Brendan Gleeson

18
+ - 1,156 744
Gladiator is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
Gladiator Russell Crowe, Joaquin Phoenix Michael Sheen

19
+ - 859 488
Titanic is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
Titanic Leonardo DiCaprio, Kate Winslet Kathy Bates

20
+ - 585 416
Psycho is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
Psycho Alfred Hitchcock, Janet Leigh Anthony Perkins

21
+ - 1,048 522
Pirates of the Caribbean: The ... is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl Johnny Depp, Keira Knightley Zoe Saldana

22
+ - 723 313
The Last of the Mohicans is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
The Last of the Mohicans Daniel Day-Lewis, Madeleine Stowe Pete Postlethwaite - Randy Eldermann

23
+ - 669 186
Star Wars Episode V: The Empir... is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher Mark Hamill

24
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The Dark Knight Christian Bale, Morgan Freeman Gary Oldman

25
+ - 795 462
Schindler's List is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
Schindlers List Liam Neeson, Ralph Fiennes Ben Kingsley

26
+ - 963 662
Indiana Jones and the Last Cru... is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade Harrison Ford, Sean Connery River Phoenix

27
+ - 584 309
2001: A Space Odyssey is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
2001: A Space Odyssey Arthur C. Clarke, Leonard Rossiter Ed Bishop

28
+ - 630 426
The Pink Panther is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
The Pink Panther Peter Sellers, Claudia Cardinale David Niven

29
+ - 518 293
Chariots of Fire is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
Chariots of Fire Stephen Fry, Kenneth Branagh Ian Holm

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30
+ - 760 679
Batman is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
Batman Jack Nicholson, Kim Basinger Michael Keaton

31
+ - 394 311
The Phantom of the Opera is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
The Phantom of the Opera Emmy Rossum, Gerard Butler Minnie Driver

32
+ - 424 365
Once Upon a Time in the West is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
Once Upon a Time in the West Henry Fonda, Claudia Cardinale Charles Bronson

33
+ - 356 316
Goldfinger is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
Goldfinger Sean Connery, Honor Blackman Garry Marshall

34
+ - 404 276
Dances with Wolves is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
Dances with Wolves Kevin Costner, Mary McDonnell Charles Rocket

35
+ - 326 199
Interstellar is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
Interstellar Anne Hathaway, Matthew McConaughey Matt Damon

36
+ - 408 375
Blade Runner is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
Blade Runner Harrison Ford, Daryl Hannah Sean Young

37
+ - 412 374
Terminator 2: Judgment Day is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
Terminator 2: Judgment Day Arnold Schwarzenegger, Edward Furlong Linda Hamilton

38
+ - 301 277
Vertigo is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
Vertigo James Stewart, Kim Novak Alfred Hitchcock

39
+ - 463 319
Batman Begins is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
Batman Begins Katie Holmes, Christian Bale Morgan Freeman

40
+ - 359 393
Star Trek: The Motion Picture is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
Star Trek: The Motion Picture William Shatner, Leonard Nimoy George Takei

41
+ - 375 294
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The Magnificent Seven Steve McQueen, Charles Bronson James Coburn

42
+ - 518 364
Requiem for a Dream is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
Requiem for a Dream Jennifer Connelly, Jared Leto Ellen Burstyn

43
+ - 297 169
Gone with the Wind is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
Gone with the Wind Clark Gable, Vivien Leigh Olivia de Havilland

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+ - 458 308
Up is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
Up Christopher Plummer, Ed Asner Laraine Newman

45
+ - 334 401
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The Matrix Keanu Reeves, Hugo Weaving Carrie-Anne Moss

46
+ - 377 384
Conan the Barbarian is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
Conan the Barbarian Arnold Schwarzenegger, James Earl Jones Max von Sydow

47
+ - 322 321
The Nightmare Before Christmas is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
The Nightmare Before Christmas Paul Reubens, Catherine O'Hara Danny Elfman

48
+ - 346 370
Edward Scissorhands is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
Edward Scissorhands Johnny Depp, Winona Ryder Vincent Price

49
+ - 281 239
The Shawshank Redemption is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
The Shawshank Redemption Morgan Freeman, Rita Hayworth Tim Robbins

50
+ - 397 305
The Dark Knight Rises is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Greatest Film Scores of All Time
The Dark Knight Rises Anne Hathaway, Christian Bale Morgan Freeman - Hans Zimmer & James Newton Howard