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    Every Oscar-Nominated Best Original Song Since 2000, Ranked

    I listened to all 106 songs and am here to separate the flops from the bops.

    Collage of performers of Oscar-nominated songs

    106. "I Need to Wake Up" — An Inconvenient Truth (2006)

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    Island Def Jam / Via youtube.com

    Nominees: Melissa Etheridge

    Performed by: Melissa Etheridge

    Did it win?: Yes!

    Thoughts: It may have won an Oscar, but it is not a winner here. This is the epitome of an awful Best Song nominee. It's a snoozy ballad (plenty more to come). It was played over the film's closing credits (boring). It's vaguely uplifting/social justice-y without really saying anything new or fresh. It is so uncatchy it could only aspire to be elevator music. The moment this song ends, all memory of it has evaporated from your mind. And the real coup de grace here is that it somehow managed to beat out all three Dreamgirls songs this year. In the words of Michael Jordan: "And I took that personally." 

    105. "Somehow You Do" — Four Good Days (2021)

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    Nominees: Diane Warren

    Performed by: Reba McEntire

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "No Time to Die" from No Time to Die

    Thoughts: If there are three names you need to remember as we proceed, they are: Randy Newman, Sting, and Diane Warren. This holy trinity of Best Original Song can barely go a year without poking their heads onto a nomination list. Diane Warren has famously been nominated 14 times. Ten of those nominations appear on this list, and this year's is definitely the worst. Another slow, credits-rolling ballad to endure while putting on your coat and walking out of the theater.

    104. "Io si (Seen)" — The Life Ahead (2020)

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    Netflix / Via youtube.com

    Nominees: Diane Warren & Laura Pausini

    Performed by: Laura Pausini

    Did It Win?: No. It lost to "Fight for You" from Judas and the Black Messiah.

    Thoughts: 2020's slow Diane Warren power ballad played over the credits of a film hardly anyone saw. This one was translated into Italian, so that's cool, but highly forgettable. 

    103. "Scarlet Tide" — Cold Mountain (2003)

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    Nominees: T Bone Burnett & Elvis Costello

    Performed by: Alison Krauss

    Did It Win?: No. It lost to "Into the West" from The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King

    Thoughts: For whatever reason, the Academy was digging the depressing folk songs in Cold Mountain that dirge their way along into nothingness. This one plays over the credits, so I ranked it lower than our next nominee. 

    102. "You Will Be My Ain True Love" — Cold Mountain (2003)

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    Nominees: Sting

    Performed by: Sting & Alison Krauss

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Into the West" from The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King

    Thoughts: And Sting has arrived to the party! We will be seeing plenty more of his work, but his first entry is this depressing folk song that BARELY plays over a battlefield scene early in the film. 

    101. "My Funny Friend and Me" — The Emperor's New Groove (2000)

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    Nominees: David Hartley & Sting 

    Performed by: Sting

    Did It Win?: No. It lost to "Things Have Changed" from Wonder Boys

    Thoughts: As someone who dressed up like Kuzco for Halloween, I was shocked to learn that a song from The Emperor's New Groove was nominated for an Oscar. I'd seen the film dozens of times and couldn't remember a musical number. I was even more shocked when I actually listened to this song. If you played this for me and said you'd give me a million dollars if i could guess the movie it was attached to, I would never say this film. This Sting song (because of course it is) sounds like a '90s middle school spring formal slow dance selection. It's dull, and it doesn't fit in the movie at all. Someone in the Academy deserves to be turned into a llama for nominating this. 

    100. "This Is a Life" — Everything Everywhere All at Once (2022)

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    Nominees: David Byrne, Ryann Lott, and Mitski

    Performed by: Son Lux, Mitski, and David Byrne

    Did It Win?: We'll find out at the Oscars on March 12. 

    Thoughts: This is my favorite film of the year, but I was shocked to learn there was an Original Song in it. Upon listening, however, I realize why I forgot it. This film is not giving everything. It's the equivalent of a week-old, grocery store, plain bagel. Stale and bland. This is the one Oscar, I will go on the record to say Everything Everywhere All at Once does not need. 

    99. "Speak Now" — One Night in Miami (2020)

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    Nominees: Sam Ashworth & Leslie Odom Jr. 

    Performed by: Leslie Odom Jr. 

    Did It Win?: No. It lost to "Fight for You" from Judas and the Black Messiah.

    Thoughts: Another slow credits song. Odom plays Sam Cooke in the film and obviously is a talented singer, but this is not catchy and never moves out of first gear. 

    98. "Hear My Voice" — The Trial of the Chicago 7 (2020)

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    Nominees: Daniel Pemberton & Celeste

    Performed by: Celeste

    Did It Win?: No. It lost to "Fight for You" from Judas and the Black Messiah.

    Thoughts: The third 2020 credits song to make the list already. It's got a bit more umph than "Speak Now" but not by much. Also, is it just me or does this sound like someone just put new words to a Christmas background track? 

    97. "The Place Where Lost Things Go" — Mary Poppins Returns (2018)

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    Nominees: Marc Shaiman & Scott Wittman

    Performed by: Emily Blunt

    Did It Win?: No. It lost to "Shallow" from A Star Is Born.

    Thoughts: Disney is also a perennial favorite in this category, and while many of their songs are catchy bops, this one decidedly is not. It's "Spoonful of Sugar" mixed with a lullaby, and if there is an actual melody here, you'd be hard pressed to remember it. How did this get in over a song from Vox Lux? Too much residual love for "Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious."

    96. "Suddenly"Les Miserables (2012)

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    Nominees: Claude-Michel Schonberg, Alain Boublil, and Herbert Kretzmer

    Performed by: Hugh Jackman

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Skyfall" from Skyfall

    Thoughts: Since songs from stage-to-movie musical adaptations are ineligible for Best Original Song, the cinematic versions often throw in an extra song or two in an attempt to win the trophy. Good job to Les Mis for not just slapping something over the credits, but this tune Jean Valjean sings after rescuing Cosette is a nothing song swallowed alive by the musical's other soaring numbers. 

    95. "Take It All" — Nine (2009)

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    Nominees: Maury Yeston 

    Performed by: Marion Cotillard

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "The Weary Kind" from Crazy Heart. 

    Thoughts: Another such stage-to-movie musical addition. Marion Cotillard does a striptease to this jazzy number, but again it's a bit lackluster. 

    94. "I Can't Let You Throw Yourself Away" — Toy Story 4 (2019)

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    Nominees: Randy Newman

    Performed by: Randy Newman

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "(I'm Gonna) Love Me Again" from Rocketman.

    Thoughts: The first of six Randy Newman entries on this list (he writes on a number of Disney/Pixar titles), this song about Forky trying to throw himself into the trash is fine, but very repetitive lyrically. He's done much better elsewhere. 

    93. "A Fool in Love" — Meet the Parents (2000)

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    Nominees: Randy Newman 

    Performed by: Randy Newman 

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Things Have Changed" from Wonder Boys

    Thoughts: Another Randy Newman song from the opening credits of the Ben Stiller comedy. It's an odd song that opens with an extended choir sequence before transitioning into your more typical Randy Newman track. Certainly less repetitive, but also much weirder. 

    92. "Everybody Needs a Best Friend" — Ted (2012)

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    Nominees: Walter Murphy & Seth MacFarlane

    Performed by: Norah Jones

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Skyfall" from Skyfall

    Thoughts: This jazzy Norah Jones track plays over the opening credits of Mark Wahlberg's character becoming best friends with his teddy bear. It's a fun little romp (if forgettable), but ultimately fails to be either a great comedic song or a great jazz number. Instead it hovers in the middle unsure what it's aiming for. 

    91. "There You'll Be" — Pearl Harbor (2001)

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    Nominees: Diane Warren 

    Performed by: Faith Hill

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "If I Didn't Have You" from Monsters, Inc.

    Thoughts: This Diane Warren song was originally offered to Celine Dion before Faith Hill grabbed it, and it shows. Hill has a beautiful voice, but not necessarily for this kind of power ballad. It did become decently popular after the film's release, but is ultimately a bit forgettable. 

    90. "Before My Time" — Chasing Ice (2012)

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    Nominees: J. Ralph

    Performed by: J. Ralph, Scarlett Johansson, and Joshua Bell

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Skyfall" from Skyfall

    Thoughts: There's nothing really wrong with this simple piano and strings number that plays over the credits to this documentary about climate change. It's the slightly more filled out version of "The Moon Song" complete with Scarlett Johansson's vocals. 

    89. "Learn to Be Lonely" — The Phantom of the Opera (2004)

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    Nominees: Andrew Lloyd Webber & Charles Hart

    Performed by: Minnie Driver

    Did It Win?: No. It lost to "Al otro lado del rio" from The Motorcycle Diaries.

    Thoughts: Phantom opted to put their original song over the closing credits, giving the piece to Minnie Driver, who doesn't do her own opera singing in the body of the film, but has a nice voice. This is certainly no "Masquerade," but it's inoffensive. 

    88. "Until..." — Kate & Leopold (2001)

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    Nominees: Sting

    Performed by: Sting

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "If I Didn't Have You" from Monsters, Inc.

    Thoughts: This waltz ballad from Sting plays over the closing credits to the Meg Ryan time-traveling romance. It's aggressively fine. 

    87. "Our Town" — Cars (2006)

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    Nominees: Randy Newman 

    Performed by: James Taylor

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "I Need to Wake Up" from An Inconvenient Truth

    Thoughts: In and of itself, this Randy Newman song from Cars is a bit bland, but it is utilized well in the film overtop of a montage showing what Radiator Springs was like in the bustling days before the interstate was put in. 

    86. "The Hands That Built America" — Gangs of New York (2002)

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    Nominees: U2

    Performed by: U2

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Lose Yourself" from 8 Mile

    Thoughts: It's a U2 song that sounds exactly like a U2 song. If you like U2, then that's great. It does feel a bit jarring over the credits to a film set in 1840s New York though, I will say. 

    85. "I Move On" — Chicago (2002)

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    Nominees: John Kander & Fred Ebb

    Performed by: Catherine Zeta-Jones & Renée Zellweger

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Lose Yourself" from 8 Mile

    Thoughts: As much as I adore Chicago, this jazzy over-the-credits add-on is a bit ho-hum. It wants to be "Easy Street" from Annie but never quite musters up the pizzaz. It also struggles to outshine the numerous great songs in its own movie. 

    84. "Into the West" — The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003)

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    Nominees: Annie Lennox, Howard Shore, and Fran Walsh

    Performed by: Annie Lennox

    Did It Win?: Yes!

    Thoughts: Coming off the success of the Enya song over The Fellowship of the Rings' credits, the LOTR team returned with another haunting melody to end the film. Annie Lennox is wonderful, and her voice is always exceptional, but this ballad doesn't ever go anywhere. The 2003 Best Song category was extremely weak (see Cold Mountain), and with the Tolkien sweep, it won a statue that it didn't necessarily deserve. 

    83. "Writing's on the Wall" — Spectre (2015)

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    Nominees: Jimmy Napes & Sam Smith

    Performed by: Sam Smith

    Did It Win?: Yes!

    Thoughts: Another sequel winning an Oscar on the back of its much better predecessor. Sam Smith's Bond song desperately wants to be "Skyfall" but is decidedly not "Skyfall." For whatever reason, the song gets stuck in a lobotomized moan and never elevates. 2015 wasn't a particularly strong Best Original Song year, but this is easily the worst of the five entrants. Sam Smith's fumbling acceptance speech was just the icing on the cake. 

    82. "Belleville Rendez-vous" — The Triplets of Belleville (2003)

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    Nominees: Benoit Charest & Sylvain Chomet

    Performed by: Beatrice Bonifassi

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Into the West" from The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King

    Thoughts: Another nominee from 2003 (quickly shaping up to be the worst year for Best Song). It's a jaunty French number performed at a variety show, but it's more cartoonish than anything. I will admit I'd never heard of this film before writing this list, but this Wikipedia plot summary has me intrigued: "It tells the story of Madame Souza, an elderly woman who goes on a quest to rescue her grandson Champion, a Tour de France cyclist, who has been kidnapped by the French mafia for gambling purposes and taken to the city of Belleville."

    81. "Real in Rio" — Rio (2011)

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    Nominees: Carlinhos Brown, Sergio Mendes, and Siedah Garrett

    Performed by: Anne Hathaway, Jesse Eisenberg, Jamie Foxx, George Lopez, will.i.am, and The Rio Singers

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Man or Muppet" from The Muppets

    Thoughts: 2011 was the bizarre year when only two songs were nominated. I will say nothing on this list of eligible contenders is jumping out at me as a great song, but the two nominees were both meh. First up is the opener from Rio. Because so many different characters (plus a choir) are featured, the whole thing is choppy and all over the place. Not what we're looking for in a poppy animated film. 

    80. "Man or Muppet" — The Muppets (2011)

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    Nominees: Bret McKenzie

    Performed by: Jason Segel, Peter Linz, Bill Barretta, and Jim Parsons

    Did it win?: Yes!

    Thoughts: Rio's only slightly better competitor is this jokey ballad in which a man and a muppet struggle to determine if they are, in fact, men or muppets. If you're going to be a joke song nominee, you've got to be clever, and I don't think this song is as witty as the writers may have thought it was. 

    79. "Mighty River" — Mudbound (2017)

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    Nominees: Mary J. Blige, Raphael Saadiq, and Taura Stinson

    Performed by: Mary J. Blige

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Remember Me" from Coco

    Thoughts: Back to some more ballads. This crop have a bit more umph to them than those lower on the list but still fail to really break through. This slow gospel number is over the closing credits and, despite Blige's great vocals, is a bit monotonous — especially as it crosses the five-minute mark. 

    78. "I'll Fight" — RBG (2018)

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    Nominees: Diane Warren

    Performed by: Jennifer Hudson

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Shallow" from A Star is Born.

    Thoughts: Another Diane Warren empowerment ballad. Jennifer Hudson gives it her all for the credits of the RBG documentary, and I will say it's a bit more sticky than Warren's earlier work on this list. 

    77. "Applause" — Tell It Like a Woman (2022)

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    Nominees: Diane Warren

    Performed by: Sofia Carson

    Did it win?: We'll find out at the Oscars on March 12. 

    Thoughts: Let's just knock a few more of these Diane Warren ballads out in succession. This year's nomination is borderline ridiculous as it plays in an anthology film that barely a soul (including yours truly) has seen. The Academy's music branch is clearly dead set on nominating Warren until she wins, but the Academy at large refuses to give her a win that's unearned. While part of me is like, "Just give her the damn Oscar already," this year, she is up against at least two songs that are SIGNIFICANTLY better. Poor Diane. 

    76. "I'm Standing with You" — Breakthrough (2019)

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    Nominees: Diane Warren

    Performed by: Chrissy Metz

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "(I'm Gonna) Love Me Again" from Rocketman.

    Thoughts: Yet another Diane Warren ballad. The woman is a writing machine. This credits song plays at the end of a Christian movie where a kid falls through the ice and is saved by the power of prayer. In its favor though, this ballad hits you with the proper arc of a ballad that rises, rests, and then finishes with a banger. In Metz's capable hands, it works. 

    75. "In the Deep" — Crash (2005)

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    Nominees: Michael Becker & Bird York

    Performed by: Bird York

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "It's Hard out Here for a Pimp" from Hustle & Flow

    Thoughts: This haunting Bird York number plays in the middle of the film while a bunch of the ensemble cast stare into the middle distance and contemplate life. The movie is notoriously bad, but the song is fine. The fact she performed it with a burning car behind her at the Oscars is also incredible. 

    74. "Grateful" — Beyond the Lights (2014)

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    Nominees: Diane Warren

    Performed by: Rita Ora

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Glory" from Selma

    Thoughts: This is a bit of an odd selection for the Oscars. It's a Diane Warren credits song that is a bit of an inspirational try-hard (the word grateful is repeated seemingly hundreds of times), but its pop bent makes it fun. What's odd, however, is that it is in a movie about a singer that includes other original songs. Why they opted for the credit song over the others seems only in deference to the Oscar legend.  

    73. "The Moon Song" — Her (2013)

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    Nominees: Karen O & Spike Jonze

    Performed by: Karen O

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Let It Go" from Frozen

    Thoughts: For whatever reason, Oscar voters also routinely go for little ditties breathily whisper-sung by the movie's stars. Joaquin Phoenix and Scarlett Johansson sing this to each other in the movie, and it's really more like three chords and a nursery rhyme than a real song. BUT it does illustrate the connection that Phoenix is establishing with his AI system. 

    72. "I See the Light" — Tangled (2010)

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    Nominees: Alan Menken & Glenn Slater

    Performed by: Mandy Moore & Zachary Levi

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "We Belong Together" from Toy Story 3

    Thoughts: This might be controversially low given how popular Tangled was, how good Disney music usually is, and how this is the best song in the film. BUT please tell me that this song is not a copy-n-paste version of "A Whole New World," which Menken also wrote. I had to knock it for that. 

    71. "Almost There" — The Princess and the Frog (2009)

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    Nominees: Randy Newman

    Performed by: Anika Noni Rose

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "The Weary Kind" from Crazy Heart. 

    Thoughts: Similarly, this Randy Newman song from The Princess and the Frog is also giving me copy-n-paste vibes from his numerous other nominees. It's a fun number, but lacks some originality. 

    70. "I'm Not Gonna Miss You" — Glen Campbell: I'll Be Me (2014)

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    Nominees: Glen Campbell & Julian Raymond

    Performed by: Glen Campbell & The Wrecking Crew

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Glory" from Selma

    Thoughts: This is a hard one to rank, because on one hand the song itself is fairly run-of-the-mill. However, the story behind it, the film, and Glen Campbell's writing/recording is incredibly moving. After the legendary performer realized he had Alzheimer's disease, he made a documentary about his last tour, which he wrote and recorded this song for. He won't be able to miss his loved ones  because he won't be able to remember them, and listening to it with that context, really rips your heart out. 

    69. "When a Cowboy Trades His Spurs for Wings" — The Ballad of Buster Scruggs (2018)

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    Nominees: David Rawlings & Gillian Welch

    Performed by: Tim Blake Nelson & Willie Watson

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Shallow" from A Star is Born.

    Thoughts: In the Coen brothers' anthology film, Tim Blake Nelson plays a traveling quick draw dueler/folk singer. He plays this little ditty as he's floating up to heaven when he inevitably loses to a younger, quicker hand. It's giving John Denver and gets a lift in the list for being integral to the plot and one of the film's more emotional moments. 

    68. "A Kiss at the End of the Rainbow" — A Mighty Wind (2003)

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    Nominees: Michael McKean & Annette O'Toole

    Performed by: Eugene Levy & Catherine O'Hara

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Into the West" from The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King

    Thoughts: And we come to the best of 2003's five nominees. Really such a snoozer of a year. I would have given the win to this folk song performed by Johnny and Moira Rose as it does factor into the plot of the movie (a mockumentary about a folk musicians reunion) and is nice enough. Bonus points for a zither solo in the middle. 

    67. "Raise It Up" — August Rush (2007)

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    Nominees: Jamal Joseph, Charles Mack, and Tevin Thomas

    Performed by: Jamia Simone Nash

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Falling Slowly" from Once.

    Thoughts: 2007, bolstered by three songs from Enchanted, was one of the better Best Original Song years. This gospel piece which summons Freddie Highmore's character into a church where he will learn music is a fun number. It's a bit uneven, but I liked it. 

    66. "Lift Me Up" — Black Panther: Wakanda Forever (2022)

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    Nominees: Ryan Coogler, Ludwig Goransson, Rihanna, and Tems

    Performed by: Rihanna

    Did it win?: We'll find out at the Oscars on March 12. 

    Thoughts: I think we can all admit that the hype of Black Panther x Rihanna was much more exciting than the song we finally got. It's a bit of a snoozy ballad that plays over the end credits. Kudos for it being a tribute to Chadwick Bozeman, but I can't really rank it any higher than this. 

    65. "Be Alive" — King Richard (2021)

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    Nominees: Beyoncé & Dixson

    Performed by: Beyoncé

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "No Time to Die" from No Time to Die

    Thoughts: Okay. Beyoncé. Truly my diva. My icon. My legend. While I would love to rank this song first out of fandom, I unfortunately cannot. I did, however, use it as an important benchmark on this list. I think this is the epitome of a solidly fine song. It covers the closing credits, is sung well, has good movement, and does its job. Does it give anything extra special? Not really. We have now entered the stage of the list where the songs are edging upwards from fine. 

    64. "The Weary Kind" — Crazy Heart (2009)

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    Nominees: Ryan Bingham & T Bone Burnett

    Performed by: Colin Farrell & Jeff Bridges

    Did it win?: Yes!

    Thoughts: We love an Original Song that plays into the film's story, and this slow country song is performed several times in the film as Bridges writes it and then gives it to Farrell to perform. In the movie, Bridge's character thinks it's the best song he's ever written though which...giiiiiiiiiiirl.......really? 

    63. "Coming Home" — Country Strong (2010)

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    Nominees: Tom Douglas, Hillary Lindsey, and Troy Verges

    Performed by: Keith Urban & Julia Michaels

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "We Belong Together" from Toy Story 3

    Thoughts: One year later, we had another movie about country music with a well-plotted song, this one performed by Gwyneth Paltrow in the film and then later by Keith Urban and Julia Michaels. It's slightly more of a bop than "The Weary Kind" but faced steeper competition its year so didn't take home the trophy. 

    62. "Burn It Blue" — Frida (2002)

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    Nominees: Elliot Goldenthal & Julie Taymor

    Performed by: Caetano Veloso & Lila Downs

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Lose Yourself" from 8 Mile

    Thoughts: Here is the credits song from the Frida Kahlo biopic starring Salma Hayek. There's plenty of good energy here, and the authentic Mexican influences and choices of instruments (not common place in the land of Oscar-nominated ballads) help it stand out a bit. It is, however, a credits song lost to time. 

    61. "Manta Ray" — Racing Extinction (2015)

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    Nominees: J. Ralph & Anohni

    Performed by: Anohni

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Writing's on the Wall" from Spectre.

    Thoughts: First up on our should-have-beat-"Writing's on the Wall" tour is this haunting, small piano song from a documentary about animal extinction. It is very slight, but earwormy nonetheless.

    60. "The Empty Chair" — Jim: The James Foley Story (2016)

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    Nominees: J. Ralph & Sting

    Performed by: Sting

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "City of Stars" from La La Land

    Thoughts: I'm sorry to say that this is as high as dear ole Sting will be appearing on this list. This song (like "Manta Ray," which is also by J. Ralph) is another haunting piano number. Sting's voice is tender and somehow alluring over the credits of this documentary about a war journalist. It should also be noted that this is the lowest ranked entry from 2016, which in totality is the strongest year without a single tragic nomination.

    59. "Fight for You" — Judas and the Black Messiah (2020)

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    Nominees: D'Mile, H.E.R., and Tiara Thomas

    Performed by: H.E.R.

    Did it win?: Yes!

    Thoughts: Here is a surprise winner. I do love H.E.R., and the '60s soul vibes here are great. It is, however, a credits song that hadn't registered much before the win (a surprise) or frankly much after. But then again, such is her fate as an awards darling without much pop culture cache. 

    58. "Stand Up for Something" — Marshall (2017)

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    Nominees: Diane Warren & Common

    Performed by: Common & Andra Day

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Remember Me" from Coco

    Thoughts: The team that made Marshall had clearly seen Selma and gave Common the brief: "more of that please." They subbed in the Diane Warren/Andra Day team for John Legend, but this is another soulful anthem credit song with rapping from Common played at the end of a civil rights biopic. It is a good song, but never reached "Glory"'s glory. 

    57. "Ordinary Love" — Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom (2013)

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    Nominees: U2

    Performed by: U2

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Let It Go" from Frozen

    Thoughts: If you like U2 over the credits, might I suggest this song, which is significantly better than their Gangs of New York contribution. It plays over pictures of Nelson Mandela in this biopic. A respectable nomination I'd say. 

    56. "(I'm Gonna) Love Me Again" — Rocketman (2019)

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    Nominees: Elton John & Bernie Taupin

    Performed by: Elton John & Taron Edgerton 

    Did it win?: Yes!

    Thoughts: I loved Rocketman, and the charm that both John and Edgerton brought to the film/press tour/awards shows was undeniable. Also, this song is an upbeat, catchy disco number that fit in with the rest of John's discography on display in the biopic. I do not think it was the best song that year, but it is not a slow ballad, and for that I'm thankful. 

    55. "Happy Working Song" — Enchanted (2007)

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    Nominees: Alan Menken & Stephen Schwartz

    Performed by: Amy Adams

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Falling Slowly" from Once.

    Thoughts: Of the three Enchanted entries, I think this is the weakest. While the lyrics are clever and Adams does a wonderful job with it in the film, it is a bit "old school Disney" in its lack of catchiness. I know that's what it's going for, but I'm not in love. 

    54. "Al otro lado del rio" — The Motorcycle Diaries (2004)

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    Nominees: Jorge Drexler

    Performed by: Jorge Drexler

    Did it win?: Yes!

    Thoughts: This Spanish guitar-led number is the credits song from this Che Guevara biopic about a motorcycle trip he took early in his life. The song (like the film) is a bit lost to time, but I liked it. 

    53. "Loin de Paname" — Paris 36 (2009)

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    Nominees: Reinhardt Wagner & Frank Thomas

    Performed by: Nora Arnezeder

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "The Weary Kind" from Crazy Heart. 

    Thoughts: Very similar thoughts on this folky French number from a film about a music hall where a murder was committed. I do love the accordion here though. That's always a fun touch (as Lady Gaga knows well). 

    52. "Lost Stars" — Begin Again (2014)

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    Nominees: Gregg Alexander & Danielle Brisebois

    Performed by: Adam Levine

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Glory" from Selma

    Thoughts: It feels right that the Maroon 5 frontman would be settling here dead center, doesn't it? This pop/rock tune sorta sounds like any Maroon 5 number and is a fun upbeat love ballad that plays an integral part to this film's plot. We'll be seeing less and less credits songs as we move on. 

    51. "I've Seen It All" — Dancer in the Dark (2000)

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    Nominees: Bjork, Sjon, and Lars von Trier

    Performed by: Bjork

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Things Have Changed" from Wonder Boys

    Thoughts: I don't even know how to begin to rate this very Bjork, atonal number from the middle of this Lars von Trier musical. She sings the song about her degenerative eye condition as a train is passing her, so it definitely gets points for plot importance. It's also iconic in that this is the song Bjork was performing when she wore the swan dress. But it is a very odd song. 

    50. "A Love Before Time" — Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (2000)

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    Nominees: Jorge Calandrelli, Tan Dun, and James Schamus

    Performed by: Tan Dun 

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Things Have Changed" from Wonder Boys

    Thoughts: A slightly better (or at least easily rated) song from that same year comes from Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. The slow Chinese number is haunting and resonant and sticks with you even if you don't know the language. 

    49. "If I Rise" — 127 Hours (2010)

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    Nominees: A. R. Rahman, Rollo Armstrong, and Dido

    Performed by: A. R. Rahman & Dido

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "We Belong Together" from Toy Story 3

    Thoughts: If you love a musical MOMENT in a film, here is one for you. This beautiful, tragic piece plays as James Franco is escaping from the rocks after 127 hours. It's a beautiful piece of music employed properly in a film that isn't a musical. Why more Oscar bait films aren't employing this technique to hunt for a Best Original Song trophy, I will never know. 

    48. "Audition" — La La Land (2016)

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    Nominees: Justin Hurwitz & Pasek & Paul

    Performed by: Emma Stone

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "City of Stars" from La La Land

    Thoughts: Thanks to the rule change that limits a film to two Best Original Song nominees, this is one of La La Land's pair. Emma Stone performs it in a single take while auditioning, and this is definitely the number that won Emma Stone her Oscar (and also won La La Land Best Picture briefly). "We are the fools who dream" is a captivating refrain for the modern day musical, and certainly catchy. 

    47. "Earned It" — Fifty Shades of Grey (2015)

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    Nominees: Belly, DeHeala, Stephan Moccio, and The Weeknd

    Performed by: The Weeknd

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Writing's on the Wall" from Spectre.

    Thoughts: Another song better than "Writing's on the Wall" is this R&B number with some big band influence from the kinky opener to the Fifty Shades series. I think its attachment with the franchise proved this song's downfall, as it would for the even better songs represented in the film's second and third installments. I don't the Pixar stans coming for me, but Zayn should have an Oscar over the Coco team...

    46. "If I Didn't Have You" — Monsters, Inc. (2001)

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    Nominees: Randy Newman 

    Performed by: John Goodman & Billy Crystal

    Did it win?: Yes!

    Thoughts: Another Randy Newman x Pixar collab. Sully and Mike perform this one over the closing credits. It's cute. It's comedic. It's not as good as "Put That Thing Back Where It Came From or So Help Me" which is a legendary theatrical number. 

    45. "Things Have Changed" — Wonder Boys (2000)

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    Nominees: Bob Dylan 

    Performed by: Bob Dylan 

    Did it win?: Yes!

    Thoughts: The rightful winner of the 2000s Oscar race (we love it when that happens) is this Bob Dylan number that is very Bob Dylan. It's an upbeat credits song, but it's Bob Dylan and that, it turns out, makes it instantly better than most Oscar-nominated songs. 

    44. "Father and Daughter" — The Wild Thornberrys Movie (2002)

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    Nominees: Paul Simon

    Performed by: Paul Simon

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Lose Yourself" from 8 Mile

    Thoughts: There was a LOT of intrigue regarding the 2002 Best Original Song Oscar race in my household growing up. Obviously, I dragged my family to the theaters to see The Wild Thornberrys Movie, and we all loved the soundtrack (which we had on CD). My dad, in particular, loved this song about fathers and daughters, and so we were excited to see it compete on Oscar night. Needless to say, my very Christian family had PLENTY to say when it lost to Eminem. While I now recognize that it shouldn't have won an Oscar, I do still love the song. 

    43. "We Belong Together" — Toy Story 3 (2010)

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    Nominees: Randy Newman

    Performed by: Randy Newman

    Did it win?: Yes!

    Thoughts: The correct winner from 2010, this also happens to be one of Randy Newman's best Disney songs. It's a jaunty, upbeat track with a lot more complexity and interest than some of his other more child-friendly numbers. But still not his best. 

    42. "Down in New Orleans" — The Princess and the Frog (2009)

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    Nominees: Randy Newman

    Performed by: Dr. John

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "The Weary Kind" from Crazy Heart. 

    Thoughts: I would argue that Randy Newman's best Oscar song on the list (and the song that should have won the 2009 Oscar) is this opener from The Princess and the Frog. It's sung over an early working montage in the film and is a jazzy, horn-filled delight. Fans of Holes will also recognize Dr. John from "Let's Make a Better World" which I had on CD and listened to constantly. 

    41. "Down to Earth" — WALL-E (2008)

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    Nominees: Peter Gabriel & Thomas Newman

    Performed by: Peter Gabriel

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Jai Ho" from Slumdog Millionaire

    Thoughts: I really think the work going on here is next level genius. Obviously, WALL-E has an incredible score. (It has to, as no one is speaking for most of the film). And so rather than just slapping a completely unrelated song over the end credits, they interwove the Peter Gabriel song with Thomas Newman's score. This is some A+ thinking, and I'd like to see more song/score intertwining please. 

    40. "Pi's Lullaby" — Life of Pi (2012)

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    Nominees: Mychael Danna & Bombay Jayashri

    Performed by: Bombay Jayashri

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Skyfall" from Skyfall

    Thoughts: Life of Pi is another great song/score film (again necessitated by no speaking). This Tamil song, which plays over the film's intro, also integrates parts of the score. It's a soothing lullaby, and I'd say generally underrated. 

    39. "Vanilla Sky" — Vanilla Sky (2001)

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    Nominees: Paul McCartney 

    Performed by: Paul McCartney

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "If I Didn't Have You" from Monsters, Inc.

    Thoughts: Vanilla Sky is honestly one of the worst movies I've ever sat through. Disastrous. This Paul McCartney song, however, is very listenable. It's a jaunty rock/folk number that plays right after the Times Square dream sequence. So you like the song before you get progressively enraged by the viewing experience. 

    38. "Til It Happens to You" — The Hunting Ground (2015)

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    Nominees: Lady Gaga & Diane Warren

    Performed by: Lady Gaga

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Writing's on the Wall" from Spectre.

    Thoughts: This song from a documentary about sexual assault on college campuses should have won Warren her Oscar. If we were looking to give her a legacy award, this was the time to do it (rather than giving the trophy to Sam Smith). Lady Gaga sings her heart out, and the Oscars performance where they were joined on stage by other sexual assault survivors was devastatingly powerful. 

    37. "Believe" — The Polar Express (2004)

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    Nominees: Glen Ballard & Alan Silvestri

    Performed by: Josh Groban 

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Al otro lado del rio" from The Motorcycle Diaries.

    Thoughts: Okay, we're finally getting to some of the iconic songs on this list that I'd say the general public would recognize. Would they know this Josh Groban song only because it plays on the radio every year during the month of December? Possibly. But notoriety is worth a lot in this ranking, and so we have Mr. Groban's yuletide carol here. 

    36. "Patience" — Dreamgirls (2006)

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    Nominees: Henry Krieger & Willie Reale

    Performed by: Eddie Murphy, Anika Noni Rose, and Keith Robinson

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "I Need to Wake Up" from An Inconvenient Truth

    Thoughts: *takes a deep breath* When I think about Dreamgirls at the Oscars, my blood still boils all these years later. Yes, it did lead the nomination count with eight noms, but it should have had more. Snubbed in Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actress (Beyoncé), and Best Adapted Screenplay. Plus, Eddie Murphy lost in a surprise upset! But the most egregious mistake was letting all three of its blisteringly good Best Original Song nominees go home empty-handed, while the snoozy last-place credits song won an Oscar. Watch this performance and tell me they didn't deserve to win! "Patience" is the worst of the three nominated songs, and it's still in the top third of this list. When Beyoncé pops up out of the floor and gives that screech. Magic. 

    35. "Remember Me" — Coco (2017)

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    Nominees: Kristen Anderson-Lopez & Robert Lopez

    Performed by: Benjamin Bratt, Gael Garcia Bernal, Anthony Gonzalez, and Natalia Lafourcade

    Did it win?: Yes!

    Thoughts: If I was writing a "top movie songs you cried during" list, this would be first place with a bullet. The simple lullaby forms a powerful conclusion to the film as the titular Grandma Coco sings the tune with her grandson. You can't really begrudge it the Oscar. It is powerful, even if it is a bit on the slight side. 

    34. "Dos Oruguitas" — Encanto (2021)

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    Nominees: Lin-Manuel Miranda

    Performed by: Sebastian Yatra

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "No Time to Die" from No Time to Die. 

    Thoughts: This is the "good-but-not-god-tier" Disney song section of the list. Mr. Miranda is back on the hunt for his EGOT with this Spanish ballad from Encanto. It beautifully plays over Abuela's backstory at the emotional climax of the film, so you can see why they submitted it for the Oscar. However, it is not "We Don't Talk About Bruno," which would have ranked higher on my list should it have been submitted by Disney. 

    33. "So Close" — Enchanted (2007)

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    Nominees: Alan Menken & Stephen Schwartz

    Performed by: Jon McLaughlin

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Falling Slowly" from Once.

    Thoughts: Really love this beautiful song that plays over the ball dancing sequence toward the film's end. It has not carried with it the same cultural resonance as other Enchanted songs, but musically it's exquisite. 

    32. "Into the Unknown" — Frozen II (2019)

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    Nominees: Kristen Anderson-Lopez & Robert Lopez

    Performed by: Idina Menzel & Aurora

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "(I'm Gonna) Love Me Again" from Rocketman.

    Thoughts: The "Let It Go" followup for the second Frozen movie is very catchy and allows Menzel the chance to belt into the void yet again. It fits perfectly into the film (before the plot becomes extremely convoluted) and probably would have won if the Anderson-Lopez household hadn't taken home two other statues in the previous six years. 

    31. "How Far I'll Go" — Moana (2016)

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    Nominees: Lin-Manuel Miranda

    Performed by: Auli'i Cravalho

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "City of Stars" from La La Land

    Thoughts: And last up in this Disney-segment is the Moana nominee also by Lin-Manuel Miranda. He was never going to beat La La Land, but boy oh boy is this song catchy. 

    30. "Travelin' Thru" — Transamerica (2005)

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    Nominees: Dolly Parton 

    Performed by: Dolly Parton

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "It's Hard out Here for a Pimp" from Hustle & Flow

    Thoughts: Transamerica is a bit of a cursed film. First, it stars a cis woman playing a trans woman. Then, there's the fact that that cis woman is Felicity Huffman. Oof. BUT we cannot say a bad word against Dolly Parton, and this Dolly song that plays over the credits is very sweet and fun. 

    29. "May It Be" — The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001)

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    WEA / Via youtube.com

    Nominees: Enya, Nicky Ryan, and Roma Ryan 

    Performed by: Enya

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "If I Didn't Have You" from Monsters, Inc.

    Thoughts: The OG LOTR credits song is a moody, operatic, Celtic haze from Enya. It's sad. It's echoey. It's haunting. And while it is a credits song, it fits within the film perfectly, as we're left with the death of Boromir and a whole lot of journey still in front of our heroes. It should have won the Oscar. 

    28. "Hold My Hand" — Top Gun: Maverick (2022)

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    Nominees: Bloodpop & Lady Gaga

    Performed by: Lady Gaga

    Did it win?: We'll find out at the Oscars on March 12. 

    Thoughts: Okay this is a great ballad, and Lady Gaga, who has won in this category before, has the chops to belt it. Unlike other end credit ballads lower on this list, "Hold My Hand" is woven throughout the film, its melody being mixed with the score as Gaga serves as a Music Supervisor on the film. In plenty of years, I'd gladly hand Gaga her second Oscar for this (since she didn't get it for House of Gucci). 

    27. "Stand Up" — Harriet (2019)

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    Nominees: Joshuah Brian Campbell & Cynthia Erivo

    Performed by: Cynthia Erivo

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "(I'm Gonna) Love Me Again" from Rocketman.

    Thoughts: When producers ask for an original credits song, this is what they are aiming for. Erivo delivers a modernized old spiritual that builds and builds and builds. The lyrics are much more complex than those of the standard ballad. Her vocals hits the deep lows and singing highs of her register. It is powerful and delicate at the same time. It should have won the Oscar. 

    26. "O...Saya" — Slumdog Millionaire (2008)

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    Nominees: A. R. Rahman & M.I.A.

    Performed by: A. R. Rahman & M.I.A.

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Jai Ho" from Slumdog Millionaire

    Thoughts: The Slumdog Millionaire soundtrack is FIRE. FIRE. FIRE. Every track hits, and of the two nominated songs, the less iconic "O...Saya" still cracks the top 25 here. It plays early in the film while the boys are running through the slums, and the drum beats mixed with M.I.A.'s rap set up the energy of the entire film. 

    25. "No Time to Die" — No Time to Die (2021)

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    Nominees: Billie Eilish & Finneas O'Connell

    Performed by: Billie Eilish

    Did it win?: Yes!

    Thoughts: This was an obvious choice last year. Everyone loves Billie Eilish. It already won a Grammy. They gave freaking Sam Smith a Bond Oscar, and he didn't even deserve it. Plus, Eilish's voice is perfect for a moody opening credits song. 

    24. "Down to Joy" — Belfast (2021)

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    Nominees: Van Morrison

    Performed by: Van Morrison

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "No Time to Die" from No Time to Die

    Thoughts: But. If I had my way, the trophy last year would have gone to the jaunty Van Morrison number that plays over the opening shots from Belfast. It's an upbeat, horn-filled tune that bookends the film with a credits spot as well. 

    23. "Look to Your Pain" — The Chorus (2004)

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    Nominees: Bruno Coulais & Christophe Barratier

    Performed by: Jean-Baptiste Maunier

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Al otro lado del rio" from The Motorcycle Diaries.

    Thoughts: You probably haven't seen this film unless you, like me, were required to watch it in French class. The song's performed by the boys choir the film is about and so has plot significance. It's also just a banger. I have no idea what they are saying, but I had this on my iPod Shuffle after watching the film. Also, Beyoncé performed it at the Oscars oddly enough! Love whoever did the booking on that. 

    22. "Listen" — Dreamgirls (2006)

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    Nominees: Scott Cutler, Henry Krieger, and Anne Preven

    Performed by: Beyoncé

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "I Need to Wake Up" from An Inconvenient Truth

    Thoughts: Speaking of Beyoncé at the Oscars, the power Deena's number added to the Dreamgirls film is so damn strong. It kills me this song isn't in the top 10, but we've got some truly great stuff coming up (including another Dreamgirls hit). 

    21. "Falling Slowly" — Once (2007)

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    Nominees: Glen Hansard & Marketa Irglova

    Performed by: Glen Hansard & Marketa Irglova

    Did it win?: Yes!

    Thoughts: This Twee-Era indie ballad comes from a tiny Irish drama, and has seemingly lived a thousand lives as everyone and their mother has released a cover of this over the years (not to mention your ex-boyfriend definitely played it at a coffee house open mic). Somehow, the Oscars landed ahead of the curve with this win, but the song is catchy and certainly iconic now. 

    20. "Husavik" — Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga (2020)

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    Nominees: Rickard Goransson, Fat Max Gsus, and Savan Kotecha

    Performed by: Molly Sanden & Will Ferrell

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Fight for You" from Judas and the Black Messiah.

    Thoughts: 2020's Oscar nominations should have just been five songs off of the Eurovision Song Contest album. There are no bad songs there, and most of them are original to the movie. This one especially is integral to the plot of the film and is performed at the climax. Laughable that it didn't win. I call snooty bias on the part of the Academy for not wanting to award the win to something Will Ferrell performed background vocals on. 

    19. "This Is Me" — The Greatest Showman (2017)

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    Nominees: Pasek & Paul

    Performed by: Keala Settle

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Remember Me" from Coco

    Thoughts: Another under-appreciated, modern, original film musical is The Greatest Showman, which similarly could have landed multiple nominations. "Come Alive" and "Rewrite the Stars" are both certainly worthy. This power anthem sung by the bearded lady and her band of circus freaks in the face of the richy riches is certainly the most iconic though. 

    18. "Can't Stop the Feeling!" — Trolls (2016)

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    Nominees: Max Martin, Shellback, and Justin TImberlake

    Performed by: Justin Timberlake

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "City of Stars" from La La Land

    Thoughts: You may want to rip your skin off upon hearing this song, but that's simply because it was OVERPLAYED at every birthday party, wedding, Bar Mitzvah, and football game for YEARS. Rarely does a song from a film get a general cultural cache separate from its use in the film. You may not like this song anymore, but you can't begrudge it a high spot. 

    17. "Happy" — Despicable Me 2 (2013)

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    Nominees: Pharrell Williams

    Performed by: Pharrell Williams

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Let It Go" from Frozen

    Thoughts: See entry for "Can't Stop the Feeling!" 

    16. "Everything Is Awesome" — The Lego Movie (2014)

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    Nominees: Shawn Patterson 

    Performed by: Tegan and Sara & The Lonely Island

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Glory" from Selma

    Thoughts: For reasons we'll never understand, The Lego Movie was not nominated for Best Animated Feature, but its incredibly catchy lead song did manage to snatch a nomination. The song is used in a variety of ways throughout this film and its sequel, and every version slaps harder than the last. 

    15. "City of Stars" — La La Land (2016)

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    Nominees: Justin Hurwitz & Pasek & Paul

    Performed by: Ryan Gosling & Emma Stone

    Did it win?: Yes!

    Thoughts: Is there a set of piano notes more recognizable in cinematic history? The moment you hear the opening duh-duh-duh-dunn duh-duh-duh, you can't help but flash back to Ryan Gosling and co. saving jazz. One of the greatest modern musicals made for film, La La Land was completely worthy of this Oscar. It is one of the most iconic Oscar films and songs (for countless reasons including its Best Picture loss), and even as a Moonlight apologist, I have to recognize all the incredible work put in here. 

    14. "Simple Song #3" — Youth (2015)

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    Milan Records

    Nominees: David Lang

    Performed by: Sumi Jo

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Writing's on the Wall" from Spectre.

    Thoughts: Rarely do we get a piece of classical/operatic music in the Best Original Song race, and this one stands out from the pack by delivering grand orchestral swells paired with a sweeping soprano. As a piece of music alone, it's exquisite, but it also plays a pivotal role in the film as Michael Caine's magnum opus connected to the memory of his wife, which everyone begs him to play but which he continues to refuse. When we finally hear the piece in the film's climax, it is everything we had hoped for. The Academy was smart to nominate this song, and if they weren't going to dole out the legacy Oscar to Diane Warren for "Till It Happens To You," then this song should have taken home the grand prize. 

    13. "It's Hard out Here for a Pimp" — Hustle & Flow (2005)

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    Atlantic / Via youtube.com

    Nominees: Frayser Boy, Juicy J, and DJ Paul

    Performed by: Three 6 Mafia

    Did it win?: Yes!

    Thoughts: Every now and again, the Academy really slam dunks on a win, and giving this rap song with a Taraji P. Henson chorus the Oscar is the stuff of Oscar legend (especially over the burning car song from Crash). A film about a pimp turning into a rapper is not complete without a rap about being a pimp. It may not be as well-known as some other songs still to come, but its win was certainly unexpected, historic, and well-deserved. 

    12. "Naatu Naatu" — RRR (2022)

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    Nominees: M. M. Keeravani & Chandrabose

    Performed by: Rahul Sipligunj & Kaala Bhairava

    Did it win?: We'll find out at the Oscars on March 12. 

    Thoughts: Sorry Lady Gaga, but this year's winner should be "Naatu Naatu." What the song lacks in notoriety (although the Oscar performance might change that), it makes up for everywhere else. The song and dance number, performed at a massive party in the film, is a testament to the power of choreography and an upbeat hit. It works well within the film, is infectious to watch, and is a stand-alone banger. More nominees like this, please. 

    11. "Let It Go" — Frozen (2013)

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    Nominees: Kristen Anderson-Lopez & Robert Lopez

    Performed by: Idina Menzel

    Did it win?: Yes!

    Thoughts: Just missing out on the top 10, we have every parent's least favorite song of the last 10 years. This is a banger from Frozen that has been overplayed to DEATH but is still the greatest Disney animation song of this century. I have distinct memories of people selecting this on the jukebox at my college bar and wailing along drunkenly at least once a week. It comes at a climactic moment in the film, and most importantly, it gave us the legendary John Travolta moment

    10. "Love You I Do" — Dreamgirls (2006)

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    Nominees: Henry Krieger & Siedah Garrett

    Performed by: Jennifer Hudson

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "I Need to Wake Up" from An Inconvenient Truth

    Thoughts: If you thought for one single, solitary second that I was not going to put a Dreamgirls song in the top 10, then clearly you have not read enough of my articles. It is wild that this song isn't a carryover from the original musical, because it is honestly one of the best in the entire show. Effie sings it to Curtis, and my oh my, does it leave you with chills. If you're adapting a stage musical, this is how you incorporate an original piece of music. A bop and a half, and another half a bop! Brb, gonna go listen to it again before I finish writing. 

    9. "All the Stars" — Black Panther (2018)

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    Nominees: Kendrick Lamar, Sounwave, Anthony Tiffith, and SZA

    Performed by: Kendrick Lamar & SZA

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Shallow" from A Star is Born.

    Thoughts: My disdain for a credit song has been addressed ad nauseam by this point in the list, but this is a SONG. Not like "good for a song from a movie" good but "play this in the club and people will pop off" good. It plays over the Black Panther credits, but I think earned special cultural significance because of the radio play as well as being a part of Black Panther: The Album, which was released ahead of the film. The strategy of releasing an album attached to the film but including music mostly not used in the film is a move we've seen repeated since to varying results (The Gift, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, etc.), but Black Panther did is perfectly. 

    8. "Glory" — Selma (2014)

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    Nominees: Common & John Legend

    Performed by: Common & John Legend

    Did it win?: Yes!

    Thoughts: The final true over-the-credits song on this list is "Glory," which I would argue is a near perfect piece of music. The juxtaposition of Common's stark rap and John Legend's crooning is an ideal mix of light and shade. The song's slow build to the a cappella finish is goose-bump inducing. The arrival of the choir at just the right time is momentous. And then, of course, there is the cultural significance of the words and their attachment to both the Civil Rights Movement of Martin Luther King Jr. (whom Selma is about), but also the modern day Black Lives Matter movement. Earlier songs on this list have attempted to make such a statement and largely failed, but "Glory" sticks the landing. Also, the Oscars performance is one of the greatest in recent memory. 

    7. "Skyfall" — Skyfall (2012)

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    Nominees: Adele & Paul Epworth

    Performed by: Adele

    Did it win?: Yes!

    Thoughts: Perhaps the only song in Oscar history to be so good it won two Oscars (the second, of course, being Sam Smith's, which Adele basically handed him). Whenever Adele releases new music, you know that it's going to be powerful because she has singing chops unlike any other. This haunting Bond opener, however, is one of her greatest songs in a career of greats. It played well on the radio and defined the modern Bond song, a genre in and of itself. Every other Bond song for the foreseeable future will be chasing the majesty of this one. 

    6. "Lose Yourself" — 8 Mile (2002)

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    Nominees: Jeff Bass, Eminem, and Luis Resto

    Performed by: Eminem

    Did it win?: Yes!

    Thoughts: If you've been to any sort of high school sporting event, have listened to any kind of workout playlist, or watched the most recent Super Bowl halftime show, then you are well acquainted with this rap track. The lead title from the semi-autobiographical film about Eminem became an instant classic. It's still a little shocking that this song won an Oscar (especially after it wasn't allowed to be performed on the telecast), but the pumping beat and the energy Eminem delivers are undeniable. You'll never look at your mom's spaghetti the same way again. 

    5. "That's How You Know" — Enchanted (2007)

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    Nominees: Alan Menken & Stephen Schwartz

    Performed by: Amy Adams

    Did it win?: No. It lost to "Falling Slowly" from Once.

    Thoughts: It's only fitting that a Disney number makes it into the top five as they've taken up 1/5 of the slots on this list by my count. While not in a fully animated film, this song is Disney at its absolute best. It's a sunny, catchy, campy classic about falling in love that will leave you smiling and humming along (even if against your will a la Patrick Dempsey in this scene). Not only is the music marvelous, but this scene is infectious and easily one of the most joyful, chaotic-good sequences in recent musical history. Amy Adams prances around Central Park with hundreds of dancers bedecked in colorful ensembles. The whole thing was shot on location, and is a PRODUCTION. The choreography and design here is unmatched on this list. 

    4. "Jai Ho" — Slumdog Millionaire (2008)

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    Nominees: A. R. Rahman & Gulzar

    Performed by: A. R. Rahman

    Did it win?: Yes!

    Thoughts: In 2008, much to the surprise of the world, the tiny drama about an Indian boy competing on Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? became the runaway sensation. The film ends with a magnificent dance number paying homage to Bollywood, and the cast performs to "Jai Ho." The infectious melody took over the airwaves (both with the help of Nicole Scherzinger and without) and introduced many Westerners to the magic of Bollywood. 

    3.