Jonathan Chin of Cereal + Sounds soundtracked Eagle Vs Shark for our very first Flix Mix!
Combining our love of gluing our eyeballs to the continuous stream of content on Netflix and swell tunes, we’ve created a new feature where music people we love make their own soundtrack to their favorite Netflix selection. Blogger extraordinaire at Cereal + Sounds and all-around fantastic human, Jonathan Chin is truly the epitome of “supporting your scene.” He is (probably) our little blog’s number one fan and we are his in return. Here’s what he had in mind for the musical backdrop of Eagle Vs Shark:
Eagle Vs Shark came out around 2007, which was around the same time Flight of the Conchords went on air. I’ve always enjoyed that idiosyncratic, deadpan humor that Jemaine and Bret went off of, so a few weeks ago I decided to give this film a go on Netflix. I’m a sucker for odd comedies and this was a solid film.
This film was written and filmed in 2005 (so about a year removed from Napoleon Dynamite’s release). I only mention this since this film uses a similar awkward humor but with a storyline that’s a little bit more complex. It also explores family dynamics and how favoritism messes a kid up, sort of like what happened in the Royal Tenenbaums with Chaz (Ben Stiller’s character). To get a bit film-nerdy, the blue-ish color grade added a nice aesthetic to film. Not sure if it was due to low budget equipment or on purpose, but it kind of painted a 2005 New Zealand as a 1995 New Zealand.
The film revolves around Lily and Jarrod, starting off in this cringy girl-meets-boy (or rather a girl-stalks-boy) manner. Lily is a sweet, shy, soft spoken woman who has been eyeing Jarrod for a long time, to the point where she knows what time he usually stops by her restaurant for dinner.
On the other hand, Jarrod is this arrogant, stubborn, and often oblivious guy. I guess you could compare him to Napoleon Dynamite, where he’s this obnoxious guy who’s trying to elevate himself to something he’s not. The two meet at a party, where there’s a fighting video game tournament which Lily turns out to be really good at. Jarrod, who had been ignoring Lily or not even interested up to that point, starts to get interested when Lily makes her way up the tournament. The sort of become a couple and Lily agrees to help Jarrod extract revenge on a childhood bully. Going to stop there with the plot, but its a bit of an odd movie with a pretty strange but funny ending and I recommend it to anyone who fancies quirky indie movies. It’s not a movie that’ll you’ll watch and instantly place it on your “favorite movies of all time” list, but I enjoyed it for its odd humor and really funny resolution.
The playlist is split into two halves, with five songs each for the movie’s main characters. Eagle is for Jarrod. It’s his favorite animal and the costume he wore his party. Shark is for Lily and is also the costume she wore for Jarrod’s party.
(Scroll to the bottom for the full mix!)
I think this song is supposed to be about a mermaid but it works with the film. On the track, King Khan sings about this woman in his dreams to whisk him away from his current life. I guess you could say that Lily is “invisible.” This is a really catchy love song that takes place on the coast, which fits with the film taking place on the coast of New Zealand.
This song is about dumping the poisonous past and moving away to start anew. It really fits the end when Jarrod comes around to face the past and reconcile with his family. I could imagine this track would pair well with the end of movie, as the end segues into the credits.
To sort of counteract the abundance of simple songs and to touch on the weird bits of film, I included this weird crazy love song by the weirdest and craziest band out there now.
This band isn’t around anymore unfortunately. I e-mailed Matador Records a few years back and they said they quietly broke up. I think this is a pretty straight forward lo-fi love song that matches this sort of movie.
This is the only song I know about facing your bully, where Brit Daniel (of Spoon) sings about a childhood bully that always preyed on him during his walk home from school. Half of the movie deals with Jarrod preparing to extract revenge on a childhood bully, but the ending was really unexpected and really funny, so I suggest you sit though the movie if quirky indie movies are your thing.
Also, I read somewhere that Brit Daniel and “Jonathan Fisk” made up eventually and “Fisk” went to every Spoon show during the early days of the band.
The lyrics on this track pertain to Lily when she first met Jarrod. It’s that weird feeling you get when you’re with someone you’ve got feelings for and you DON’T want to say something that’s lame.
This song is about being down because the person you got the hots for doesn’t share the same metal feeling. Lily’s been put down by Jarrod’s numbskull-ness for a good part of the movie but still let her feelings lead her back to him.
A simple song with a simple theme. The song is quaint and charming, which goes with Lily’s quirky personalty and the movie’s plot.
There’s a scene in the movie where Lily sings a verse of David Bowie’s “Let’s Dance” over and over again. In a case of misheard lyrics, she gets the verse wrong, and Jarrod gets frustrated with her and tries to correct her. But to spite him, she continues to sing it incorrectly. M. Ward did a great cover of the track (featured in the movie as well), which he folk-ified for a stirring stripped down version of it.
The Clean are probably New Zealand’s greatest music export (don’t quote me on that). Flying Nun Records is a really great label that put out so many great music from New Zealand bands, and I highly recommend checking the label out for anyone who wants to get acquainted with the country’s rich (and underrated) music history. This song is about blocking out the outside noise and a ‘just be yourself’ kind of mantra, sort of what Lily did for the movie.