Choice of music can make or break a film. Whether serving as a solid backdrop for sequences or just simply making certain scenes more, well, epic, music plays an undeniably important role in defining a movie for its audiences. This is something that 2024’s The Fall Guy, directed by David Leitch (Bullet Train, Deadpool 2), was able to achieve one way or another.

From the likes of “Bad To The Bone” in Terminator 2: Judgment Day, the RADWIMPS hits from “Your Name” and even “All Star” in Shrek, many forms of music, especially rock, have pretty much always had a knack for becoming synonymous or defining the films they’re featured in. Now, to some degree, the very same kind of music – and more – is poised to embody this upcoming action-comedy flick in the very same way.

Courtesy of Universal Pictures Philippines.

To contextualize upfront without spoiling the entire story, The Fall Guy, top-billed by Ryan Gosling and Emily Blunt, chronicles the story of veteran stuntman Colt Seavers (Gosling) navigating life following a near-death accident at work. Suddenly, he’s thrown into a conspiracy involving the disappearance of the famous actor he used to double for. This, while he tries to win back the love of his life, up-and-coming director Jody Moreno (Blunt).

Let me preface that, simply put, The Fall Guy is your good ol’ action-comedy flick. It’s a straightforward offering of adrenaline-fueled visual enjoyment – high stakes, explosions, chase scenes, and more while blessing you with a couple of laughs along the way. And, yes, of course, Ryan Gosling.

Courtesy of Universal Pictures Philippines.

But, aside from entertainingly showcasing the invaluable work of stunt people as well, its music also serves to make it shine through its own terms.

Serving to be both comedy-inducing as well as heart-pounding, you couldn’t help but admire and notice how many of the songs in the movie were being creatively implemented during each segment they were featured in. At quite a few times throughout its run, the music of The Fall Guy did not just merely serve as background enhancers. More so, the songs acted as subtle yet active storytelling aids.

“I was made for lovin’ you baby. You were made for lovin’ me.”

The most prominent one was the film’s usage of KISS’ 1979 hit “I Was Made For Lovin’ You” – undeniably, the film’s theme song. By the end, I was vocalizing the track’s iconic intro guitar riff thanks it being used a bunch of times more than any other track in the film.

The song is undeniably catchy and has a sense of “bad*ss-ery” that just fit the whole vibe of the movie. However, its inherent memorability alone is not its greatest strength. Rather, it is how it managed to elevate the film to point where, now, days after seeing the film, the two have already become completely synonymous in my mind.

From even having a slower and somewhat orchestral version in the movie, this song managed to do two things for the film. One, unmistakably make each action-packed scene more heart-racing and tense with its swagger-filled, electric guitar-driven instrumentation and anthemic vocalizations. Two, subtly nod to the burgeoning chemistry and reignited romance between Gosling’s and Blunt’s estranged characters using its lyrics.

It’s through these utilizations that, ultimately, now make me connect the song to this movie even at the slightest sound of its aforementioned iconic intro.

Of course, it doesn’t end there.

Courtesy of Universal Pictures Philippines.

“It was rare, I was there, I remember it all too well.”

Another scene of note and, honestly, the reason why I and probably many others found out about this movie was this one bit. Yup, it’s that one where Gosling’s Seavers is seen comically crying his eyes out to Taylor Swift’s “All Too Well” in a truck before being interrupted by Blunt’s Moreno. I remember chuckling at this scene when I randomly saw it as a clip on my social media feed prior to getting to watch the actual film. What surprised me, however, was how much, I would say, deeper its usage was in the movie itself. 

Yes, it was still used for comedic effect. However, upon further contextualization through a bittersweet montage of romance-driven scenes between Seavers and Moreno, the hit track was actively used to take the viewer down the movie’s story further. It was able to somehow make viewers understand the depth of how much the two’s failed relationship actually means to Seavers and it’s quite an obvious usage of the song given its heartbreak-filled lyricism. However, you couldn’t help but admire the subtle genius of how it managed to make me laugh while also adding a new, essential expository layer to the film without it feeling forced.

Courtesy of Universal Pictures Philippines.

“You’re the only one who really knew me at all.”

Another noteworthy instance was one of the film’s major chase scenes – one where I couldn’t help but be amused while also being on the edge of my seat.

This one in particular is one where Seavers ends up fighting a bunch of thugs and is forced to ghost Moreno at a karaoke meetup after seemingly starting to finally patch things up. Here, Moreno woefully sings Phil Collins’ “Against All Odds (Take A Look At Me Now)” – a low-key yet fitting nod to the demise of the two’s former relationship that, much like Seavers, Moreno is also still not over. This, while also serving as a emotional intensifier to the aforementioned chase sequence being interspersed with Moreno’s lament-filled chorus.

When intense action sequences like this one are soundtracked by emotionally-charged yet weirdly out of place songs, there’s a slight comedic yet epic effect that always seems to get me. True enough, this did the trick and I was constantly chuckling whilst feeling exhilarated throughout this entire segment of the movie.

There were a few other instances where songs were used in similar ways, including one involving a muscle car and AC/DC’s “Thunderstruck” as well as a scene with “I Believe In A Thing Called Love” by The Darkness and the Sydney Opera House. However, I’ll leave those for everyone to find more about once the film actually hits theaters — it gets way better once you actually see it for yourselves.

While the usage of these tracks in The Fall Guy was anything majorly groundbreaking in terms of how music is utilized within films; they are, however, effective, to say the least, in driving the movie forward sonically. The movie’s plethora of music did its job quite excellently, serving as another cherry on top. It leads to one viewing affair I can only describe as memorable and a fun little treat for the diverse musical sensibilities of all kinds of viewers out there.

Simply put, this is one you wouldn’t want to miss if you’re looking for a straightforward good time.

The Fall Guy comes out in movie theaters across the Philippines this May 1 via Universal Pictures Philippines. Watch the latest trailer for the movie below: