What You Can Learn from These Memorable Diegetic Musical Moments

This post is by Casey Faris from No Film School

There are few moments in nonmusical films where the musical numbers are just so good.

Movies are a powerful tool used to create an emotional response from the audience. When diegetic music is added to a scene, the audience gets to experience a character’s emotional state through song.

Unlike musicals that use music to motivate the story, diegetic music, or music that exists in the world of the film, can reveal another layer to a scene, creating an audio-visual cinematic moment that will last with the audience long after they’ve walked away from the theater.

Music performed by characters in a scene can punctuate a sequence’s meaning and importance to the rest of the film. The music serves the emotional tone, highlighting the motifs of a film and the changing relationship between two characters. Here are some of my favorite movie music moments, and what we can take away from them.

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