Studying with Movie Scores

Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

If you're anything like me, when you sit down to study with music, you may inevitably find yourself writing "I'm lost in the world / I'm down on my mind" instead of defining relevant aspects of life history theory. Watching TV while completing a problem set? The last time I tried that, I waxed poetic about Liz Lemon's dominant alleles. No, homework requires something else—something without distracting words or images. So whether you're tackling a paper or problem set, movie scores are a surefire accompaniment. The Arts Board presents you with eight classics.

"Mombasa" from "Inception" (Hans Zimmer)

The off-kilter percussion! The ominous horns! Your inspiration begins to flow. Just visualize Leo sprinting through his dream-world crimes. You're sure your professor planted the answer to this question somewhere deep within your subconscious. Perhaps a nap would help?

"See You Tomorrow" from "How to Train Your Dragon" (John Powell)

Whimsical at the beginning, soaring at the end. You're riding on a dragon of creativity. Nothing can stop you from figuring out your thesis! Nothing!

"Hymn to the Sea" from "Titanic" (James Horner)

Oof—writer's block. It's okay to give in to desperation a bit. Drown your sorrows with this mournful bagpipe dirge.

"The Bridge of Khazad Dum" from "The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring" (Howard Shore)

Traverse the mines of Moria, evade the Balrog, and mourn Gandalf's death, all from the comfort of your Lamont armchair. If the keening lament at the end can't get you to think of something new to say about "Romeo and Juliet," you may be out of luck.

"2815 A.D." from "WALL-E" (Thomas Newman)

Circumvent skyscraper-high mounds of garbage alongside a plucky but lonely little robot. It's an engineering marvel! Just like your problem set!

"A Legacy of Comfort" from "The Virgin Queen" (Martin Phipps)

Now you've got your flow going. The paragraphs are breezing by, and a little Elizabethan accompaniment can't hurt.

"Red Sea" from "The Prince of Egypt" (Hans Zimmer)

Because it's Passover. And because the fact that you debugged your code and still have time to sleep may be as miraculous as God parting the Red Sea after all.

"Promontory" from "The Last of the Mohicans" (Randy Edelman and Trevor Jones)

As Natty Bumppo races across the Appalachians to save his lover, you too sprint through the final equations to finish with appropriately euphoric and cinematic joy.