‘The Final Girls’: Film’s Anthem May Have Been Another


Still not seen Todd Strauss-Schulson’s newest film, the unforgettably stellar The Final Girls? If the answer is no, you need to change that, fright fans.  The film is being released on Blu Ray tomorrow (details can be found here) and should be on everyone’s list of important films to see.  I can’t stress that enough.  It’s undoubtedly a future classic and staple of the meta-horror genre.

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But if you have seen the film in all of it’s gory glory, then you’ll no doubt remember the importance of Kim Carnes’ Betty Davis Eyes.  Released in 1981, the song is featured heavily in the film and basically acts as musical symbolism of the relationship between Max and her mother Amanda.  The track works perfectly in The Final Girls and imagining the film with a different song is nearly impossible. But according to director Strauss-Schulson, that was almost the case.

In an interview with HitFlix, Todd Strauss-Schulson’s had this to say about the selection of music and what almost was:

“In the script, [screenwriters] Mark [Fortin] and Josh [John Miller] had written in [Nena’s] ’99 Lufballons.’ I think they almost were writing it in as a joke…the least emotional song to play over the most emotional scene. And that seemed like intellectually a very funny idea, but actually it doesn’t really work in a movie, you know? And so we tried to get that song, and it ended up being cost-prohibitive. And so I just sort of started digging into a bunch of…’80s tracks, that are not maybe the obvious ones you would hear at a bar mitzvah or whatever. …I was looking at Cyndi Lauper, and some of the producers were really pushing [Pat Benatar’s] ‘We Belong,’ was something that was being pushed at me pretty hard, which I thought was sort of the wrong vibe.”

Strauss-Schulson’s goes on to say:

 “It was really all about vibe. It’s kinda gotta be a melancholy but beautiful song, and I just love ‘Bette Davis Eyes.’ I love that it’s about an actress. And I don’t know, there’s something so nostalgic about that song for some reason to me. And I really pushed hard to get that piece of music, and we got it. And I find it actually very, very moving for some reason. There’s just something so mysterious about that song. And I think [during] the striptease in the end it really works as sort of a sad song. And I think in the car at the beginning it really works as a fun song. Cause it’s a pop song. And I think finding a piece of music that could do both things was challenging. But yeah, Kim Carnes is a genius, and she gave us that piece of music and I think it works really well.”

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I don’t know about you, but I eat this kind of stuff up.  I love the idea of filmmaking and how editing and music can create an almost entirely different film with an entirely different tone.  And if there’s any film that is about the sanctity of filmmaking as a whole, it’s Todd Strauss-Schulson’s The Final Girls (our review can be found here).  If you still haven’t seen it, stop reading this now, and catch it on VOD.  It’s money beyond well spent, fright fans.

The Final Girls stars Malin Akerman and Taissa Farmiga and is currently available on VOD platforms, such as Amazon Instant Video and Wal-Mart’s Vudu service. The Blu Ray will be released by Sony Pictures On November 3rd.

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