Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)
The moral of the story in Quentin Tarantino’s film Kill Bill is simple: there’s nothing like revenge. But it’s his carefully curated soundtracks that tell a story within the story. And there’s really no better way to set the tone than by opening with Nancy Sinatra’s torch song “Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down).” Sinatra’s haunting version of Sonny Bono's song might lead the listener to believe that Tarantino based the plight of his protagonist bride (played by Uma Thurman) on this song’s riveting narrative. Similarly, Charlie Feathers' rockabilly boot-stomper “That Certain Female” perfectly taps into the cocksure swagger of antagonist Bill (played by David Carradine). Where Tarantino’s past soundtracks abounded with twangy surf guitar songs, here he leans harder on the Ennio Morricone–inspired spaghetti western instrumentals to capture a classic gunfighter vibe. Luis Bacalov's “The Grand Duel (Parte Prima)” is fittingly melodramatic for this story, as is Zamfir’s campy panflute cover of James Last’s “The Lonely Shepherd,” which sounds like the theme song to The Good, the Bad and the Ugly.