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You want to get real with people. Maybe you want to focus on that intensely dysfunctional family dynamic between a drug-addicted, failed actress and her roughneck, auto-mechanic father. Perhaps you want to craft an unflinching look at an abusive mother as she comes to terms with her failures as a parent. This will be your statement, and the cover of your forthcoming DVD will be littered with countless film festival laurels. Of course, your success is entirely dependent on the right closing music. The last moment has to cut to just the right song as the credits roll in order to achieve maximum emotional impact. What will you choose?

With his moody classic Nebraska, Bruce Springsteen strips his music down to its most bare bones. Originally intended as demos, the album was later released without a full band backing, and it makes for a powerfully intimate listen. “Mansion on the Hill” evokes just the right somber feel and defeated imagery to close out your film.

The midwestern heartbreak of Damien Jurado‘s music easily adds a bitter touch to the close of a film. He’s never shied away from damaged characters or difficult situations. The homesick pining of “Ohio” is sure to grab the hearts of critics as they slowly clear the aisles.

Bellman Barker offers a slightly less heavy option. The band’s impromptu version of “Fix This Fix” holds a certain melancholic weight, but the fast and light percussion beneath it offers a much-needed respite to your potential audience. Be sure to catch the band play the Velvet Lounge this Sunday, to check out the rest of their catalog and get ideas for future cinematic efforts.