(*homocinematically inclined)

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Queer Ear for the Movie Musical Soundtrack

This post is part of Film Babble Blog's "Soundtrack September".

As every good show queen worth their Playbill collection knows, nothing beats a good show tune, whether belted out on the Great White Way or on the Silver Screen.

So, as a service to our readers (as well as sexually confused high school drama students everywhere), we here at Movie Dearest have compiled the following list (in no particular order) of our 25 Favorite Movie Musical Soundtracks, a.k.a. the "Gayest" Soundtracks of All Time. Not all of the following movies are gay (and one isn't even technically a musical), but they — and their soundtracks — certainly have their gay fans.

The Wizard of Oz(1939): Judy sings "Over the Rainbow". 'Nuff said.

A Star is Born(1954): Judy sings "The Man Who Got Away". Ditto.

Cabaret(1972): And now it's Liza's turn, old chum, in this Kander and Ebb classic.

Grease(1978): Dig the homoeroticism in "Greased Lightning" (even with that whole "pussy wagon" thing) as well as "good girl gone bad" Olivia Newton-John doing a fierce "You're the One That I Want".

Xanadu(1980): Speaking of ONJ ... The movie may be terrible, but who can resist such hits as "I'm Alive", "Suddenly" and the roller disco title track.

The Rocky Horror Picture Show(1975): From Tim Curry's "Sweet Transvestite" to the audience participation-ready "Time Warp", you'll know why this was a midnight movie staple for years.

Hedwig and the Angry Inch(2001): The hard rockin'-est of the lot, featuring tour de force vocals from John Cameron Mitchell.

Hairspray(2007): Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman's Tony Award winning score is brought to life with an all-star cast. (And the soundtrack for John Waters' 1988 original is none to shabby either.)

Beauty and the Beast(1991): We had to include at least one Disney toon tunefest, and this one's Oscar winning music by Alan Menken and Howard Ashman fits the bill ... especially with Gaston singing about how "every last inch of me's covered with hair."

Hair(1979): Speaking of hair ... A hunky Treat Williams sings all about his in the titular song ... as well as his tits in "I Got Life".

West Side Story(1961): You'll feel "pretty and witty and gay" with the landmark Stephen Sondheim/Leonard Bernstein score.

Zero Patience(1993): The most obscure of the bunch, this musical about AIDS (really) is well worth seeking out, both on DVD and CD.

The Sound of Music(1965): Admit it: you twirl around like Julie Andrews on that hilltop every time you hear it.

Victor/Victoria(1982): Speaking of Julie ... she bends her gender, rolls her shoulders and gives us her best "Le Jazz Hot".

The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert(1994): Not exactly a musical per se, but from the lip-synced wonders of "I've Never Been to Me" to the finale "Finally", you won't care. No more f*cking ABBA ...?

Mamma Mia!(2008): Not quite. Yes, Pierce Brosnan's croaking is unlistenable, but the marvelous Meryl Streep and awesome Amanda Seyfried more than make up for him.

Funny Girl(1968): Early Barbra Streisand at her very best, from her signature song "People" to the show-stopping "Don't Rain on My Parade" to channeling Fanny Brice in "My Man".

Yentl(1983): More Babs, all Babs, all sublime.

Can't Stop the Music(1980): Now to the ridiculous ... But just try to listen to the Village People anthem "Y.M.C.A." without doing the "Y.M.C.A." arms.

Moulin Rouge!(2001): First, a sexy Nicole Kidman purrs "Diamonds Are a Girl's Best Friend", than a dreamy Ewan McGregor croons "My Song", then they cap it off with the ultimate romantic duet "Come What May". And who can forget the "Elephant Love Medley"?

De-Lovely(2004): Everyone from Robbie Williams to Alanis Morissette to John Barrowman get a crack at the legendary Cole Porter song book.

Evita(1996): Well, I couldn't forget Madonna, could I?

Dreamgirls(2006): Sure, it's got Beyoncé, but Jennifer Hudson brings the house down with her blistering interpretation of "And I'm Telling You I'm Not Going".

Were the World Mine(2008): For those who wanted a gay High School Musical ... OK, an overtly gay High School Musical. "Faeries away!"

That's Entertainment!(1974-1994): From Singin' in the Rain to The Band Wagon to Gigi, the deluxe CD box set is a crash course in MGM musical history.

Click on the titles to purchase the CDs from


  1. I've been searching for those movies on DVD online stores. Thanks for the review.

  2. Great list and I appreciate your hard work but I am very surprised that you did not get the Gay Diva of Gay Diva's name spelled correctly. Again it's BARBRA not BARBARA!!! How famous does this woman have to be to get her name spelled correctly in print? Maybe after her new album is released on 09/29 it is supposed to rival her 1985 Broadway album! Otherwise a great list!!
    Of course I have most of the albums.

  3. Thank you for recognizing "Zero Patience", a great film and score!

  4. Max:

    Oops, I certainly knew that ... it has been corrected!

    - kch

  5. EXCELLENT Selections! Couldn't agree more!


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