[This article is part of our Radiohead Fanatic Fortnight — check out our box set giveaway here.]
As this week’s earlier list illustrates, Radiohead’s music has inspired a number of videos shot with the artistry of a short film. Something about the band’s dramatic, intensely emotional sound calls out to the screen, and a number of both film and commercial directors have responded. Below are some of the best and most notable uses of Radiohead’s music in films and ads. (The band, big fans of Naomi Klein’s “No Logo,” don’t license their music to big corporations, but they have donated songs to ads for non-profits, as well as the NBA.)
1. The image of Claire Danes holding a gun to her own head at the end of Baz Luhrmann’s “Romeo + Juliet” inspired “Exit Music (for a film),” the song that plays over the credits of the film. Another Radiohead song, “Talk Show Host,” figures in the film; the former was not allowed onto the soundtrack though the latter was. Christopher O’Riley’s instrumental version of “Exit Music” can also be heard in one of “Unfaithful”‘s early scenes, as well as at the beginning of its trailer.
2. One of the most famous scenes in Cameron Crowe’s “Vanilla Sky” is its opening, in which Tom Cruise is seen booking through an empty Times Square. It is set to the persistent and appropriately dread-filled “Everything in Its Right Place.” The film also features “They Might Be Wrong.”
3. Last year, “House of Cards” was used as a backdrop to this commercial for the NBA playoff season, featuring a composite of Steve Nash and Jason Kidd. Apparently, Nash is a huge Radiohead fan and the Suns’ point guard made a special request.