Killers of the Flower Moon (Soundtrack from the Apple Original Film)
Robbie Robertson will always be remembered first and foremost for his work with The Band and Bob Dylan, but film was always close to his heart and his creative inspiration, long before his fruitful career composing soundtracks. “If I hadn’t become so addicted to music at such a young age, I would have ended up in movieland,” Robertson told Apple Music in 2019. “I would see a movie that Kurosawa made or Howard Hawks made or Ingmar Bergman or John Ford or Orson Welles, Luis Buñuel, all these people—I was like, ‘How did they get to this place?’ I did end up in movieland, but I would have been more directly involved. I would have been a screenwriter or a director, that would have been my calling. It’s always lived there. And [1969’s] The Band album, to me, was my first movie.” It feels especially unfair that Robertson passed away in August 2023, just a couple months before the release of his 11th feature-film collaboration with Martin Scorsese. Killers of the Flower Moon, which portrays the murders of members of the oil-rich Osage Nation in the 1920s, sits squarely in the wheelhouse of the former Band leader: His mother was Cayuga and Mohawk, and he explored and was influenced by Indigenous culture and history in his work throughout his career. The score is as contemporary as it is rooted in Osage tradition, with electric guitar flourishes and modern production, feeling simultaneously particular to this project and distinctly Robbie Robertson. His lone vocal track is the elegiac “Still Standing,” in which his weathered voice pleads defiance and survival on behalf of Indigenous people—but also stands as a final testimony to, and grace note for, his own singular life and career.