In honor of Indiana Jones and The Temple of Doom’s 30th Anniversary, we’re going to have a look at some of the best musical pieces from the Indy series. The music from the series has become legendary, and the overall music has become one of John Williams’ most iconic scores.
There would probably be uproar if this was left out of the best pieces from the Indiana films. Also known as Indiana’s theme, it was originally two pieces of score that were played on a piano by John. John invited Steven Spielberg to a performance, where Steven asked the composer to put the pieces together in order to create the march. The theme was officially composed around 1980 and has been featured in every movie, as well as in The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles. It was used in the chronicles to represent Harrison’s portrayal of the character. It should also be noted that the full version of The Raiders March includes a snippet of Marion’s Theme. The march is used throughout various moments of each film, even cameo-ing in several other pieces.
You know the scene, but do you know the music? The piece is played during the scene where Indiana and his father escape from Castle Brunwald, and then flee, via motorcycle and side-car, from several Nazis. The high temp song reflects the action, the fun, and the speed of the escape and the chase. It also utilizes elements of several other pieces, including the Nazi Motif and the Raiders March. Part of the piece is also replayed, along with the main theme, during the final credits of The Last Crusade.
Yes, the number has been included in this list. While technically not an instrumental piece, the song makes for one hell of an opening number. Sure, John didn’t write it, but it shows off his brilliant orchestration and arranging skills, and captures the brilliance of classic movie musicals. Kate Capshaw brings a certain class to the number, making it that much more memorable. Between her singing and John’s memorable turn on a Cole Porter number, it works. It also sort of gives more authenticity to the time period of the film.
This piece is a lullaby, played when scenes feature Marion, Indiana’s (SPOILER ALERT AHEAD) eventual wife. The song was first heard during Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981), then made another appearance in Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (2008). The piece is played throughout Raiders, then again during the end credits. As lullabies do, the piece has a nice, gentle feeling to it, and is used throughout Raiders to reflect Indy and Marion’s relationship at that particular point of the film. It’s really a beautifully simple piece, but sucks the listener in.
This piece is true to its title – it’s played during a chase in the jungle. Jungle Chase starts as Mutt gives Indy a hidden switchblade while being held captive. Quick, loud and triumphant, The Jungle Chase is quite similar to pieces such as The Mine Chase and Scherzo for Motorcycle and Orchestra. John also fit elements of several other pieces in here, including The Raiders March, Irina’s Theme and Marion’s Theme. While the piece itself is actually about 10 minutes long, only about 4:23 of the music is included on the actual album version of the soundtrack.
No video for this part, unfortunately.
Happy 30th Anniversary, Temple of Doom. Let us know what other pieces deserve to be on here!