Features Film

The 40 Best Songs From Movie Musicals

TO celebrate the 40th anniversary Grease, Close-up Culture have compiled a list of our 40 favourite songs from movie musicals.


40) Mein Herr – Cabaret (1972)

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Liza Minnelli makes the most of a chair for this seductive, innuendo-filled number.

39) I Dreamed A Dream – Les Misérables (2012)

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Anne Hathaway’s raw rendition of I Dreamed A Dream strikes a tearful, personal chord among the theatrical grandeur of Tom Hopper’s 2012 film.

38) Beauty and the Beast – Beauty and the Beast (1991)

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Swooping animation as Beauty and the Beast fall waltz their way to love.

37) Diamonds Are A Girl’s Best Friend – Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (1949)

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Marilyn Monroe brings priceless shimmer and sex appeal to Jule Styne and Leo Robin’s jazz track.

36) How Far I’ll Go – Moana (2016)

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Hamilton creator Lin-Manuel Miranda makes a huge splash on the big-screen with this sweeping about the internal struggle of a young girl who loves her home but also has an irrepressible urge to branch out and explore.

35) Grease Lightnin’ – Grease (1978)

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Just a few greaser dudes fixing up a car while singing and dancing.

34) I Won’t Say – Hercules (1997)

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This Motown inspired track is one of Disney’s most underrated.

33) You’ve Got to Pick A Pocket or Two – Oliver! (1968)

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Fagin teaches the orphans to pickpocket in this excellently choreographed and cheeky sequence.

32) The Man That Got Away – A Star Is Born (1954)

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George Cukor’s one-shot scene gives full attention to the one-of-a-kind Judy Garland as she blasts out this classic tune.

31) Let The Sunshine In – Hair (1979)

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Berger! One final rousing song to lament the loss of the Vietnam War.

30) The Bare Necessities – The Jungle Book

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Baloo teaches Mowgli how to relax and enjoy life with the catchiest of tunes.

29) Let It Go – Frozen (2013)

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A wildly popular modern Disney classic. Let It Go‘s liberating flows caught everyone’s imagination.

28) When You Wish Upon A Star – Pinocchio (1940)

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The starry-noted bookend to Pinocchio was so moving that it became the anthem of the entire company.

27) White Christmas – White Christmas (1954)

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Irving Berlin and Michael Curtiz’s beautifully wrapped festive gift to us all.

26) A Lovely Night – La La Land (2016)

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Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone start to fall for each other to the backdrop of an unimpressive LA skyline. Irresistibly charming stuff with plenty of odes to beloved musicals.

25) Hakuna Matata – The Lion King

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Timon and Pumbaa introduce us to ‘a wonderful phrase’ and an upbeat Disney classic.

24) Ol’ Man River – Showboat (1936)

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Paul Robeson’s rich voice gives voice African-American hardships in the South.

23) Steppin’ Out With My Baby – Easter Parade (1948)

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Another Irving Berlin written tune, this time with a dancing masterclass from Astaire to bring it life.

22) My Favourite Things -The Sound of Music (1965)

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Julie Andrews puts a smile on our faces with this comforting classic.

21) Under The Sea – The Little Mermaid (1989)

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Dancing Calypso fun under the sea with the much imitated voice of Samuel E. Wright.

20) Good Morning – Singing In The Rain (1952)

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Debbie Reynolds, Gene Kelly and Donald O’Connor realise its morning and bless us with warm tune.

19) I Wan’na Be Like You – The Jungle Book (1967)

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King Louie comes up with the catchiest of tracks to try and get ‘man’s red fire’ from Mowgli.

18) If I Were A Rich Man – Fiddler On The Roof (1971)

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When you are down in the dumps and too nervous to look at your bank account, pop on Fiddler on The Roof and be cheered up by Tevye’s poor man’s anthem.

17) I Could Have Danced All Night – My Fair Lady (1964)

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Pair the angelic voice of Marni Nixon with Audrey Hepburn and we have cinematic gold dust.

16) The Deadwood Stage – Calamity Jane (1953)

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Doris Day is all-action and pitch-perfect in this knee-slapping opening number. Whip-Crack-Away!

15) Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas – Meet Me In St. Louis (1944)

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Judy Garland’s poignant festive tune with WW2 still looming large.

14) Off To See The Wizard – The Wizard Of Oz (1939)

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A skipping tune to propel this magical adventure.

13) The Black Hills – Calamity Jane (1953)

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Day shows off her incredible range with this yearning duet.

12) Summer Nights – Grease (1978)

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Summer Lovin’ is a blast as two high-schoolers unwittingly duet and reminiscence about their summer love affair.

11) Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious – Mary Poppins

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Everyone’s favourite tongue twisting tune from everyone’s favourite flying nanny.

10) America – West Side Story (1961)

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The genders debate the merits of America during a vivacious number.

9) Cheek to Cheek – Top Hat (1935)

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The elegance of Ginger Rogers and Fred Astaire in full flow puts us all in heaven.

8) Windy City – Calamity Jane (1953)

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Charismatic and magnetic, Day blows in from the windy city with gust of American musical flair.

7) City of Stars – La La Land (2016)

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The pinnacle of Damien Chazelle’s modern musical masterpiece, it runs through the entire film.

6) I Will Wait for You – Umbrellas of Cherbourg (1964)

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Catherine Deneuve and Nino Castelnuovo’s tender farewell. As romantic as it gets.

5) Spoonful of Sugar – Mary Poppins (1964)

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Julie Andrews is utterly delightful as she charms us into taking our medicine.

4) The Sound of Music – The Sound of Music (1965)

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A trip round the green mountains of Austria is enlivened by Robert Wise’s gliding camera and Andrews’ soaring voice. Glorious cinema.

3) Singin’ in The Rain – Singin’ in the Rain (1953)

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Gene Kelly turns a rainy evening into one of cinema’s most iconic moments

2) You’re the One That I Want – Grease (1978)

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Sandy’s transformation turns Danny’s legs to jelly and provides an unforgettable end to Grease.

1) Over the Rainbow – The Wizard of Oz (1939)

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Judy Garland’s timeless ballad. Pure and wondrous cinema.

What are your favourite musical film songs of all time? Comment below.

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4 comments

  1. Here are some of my favorite movie musicals

    1. Les Misérables- this movie is what made me fall in love with the musical. It eventually led me to reading the book and seeing the stage show 5 times

    2. Annie (1982)- this was one of my favorite movies in elementary school

    3. Sound of Music- of course this one would be on here

    4. Beauty and the Beast (2017)- yes the live action one, but it brought Beauty and the Beast back into my life

    5. Greatest Showman- this is one of the newest movie musicals in my life. I saw it in Feb. and loved the movie’s message and now own the songs

    Just a few

    Liked by 1 person

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