September 14, 2011
Today, I'm introducing a new series: 'Scenes That Pop,' where Everybody Taste highlights moments in cinema where pop music and film seemingly converge into one perfect art form.
Anthony: "Dignan, you know what's going to happen if you go back there."
Dignan: "No, I don't. They'll never catch me, man… because I'm fucking innocent."
The penultimate scene in Wes Anderson's 1996 debut film Bottle Rocket is soundtracked by "2000 Man," a track taken from The Rolling Stones' divisive 1967 psychedelic outing, Their Satanic Majesties Request. As the Stones only self-produced record, critics often dismiss the LP's experimental leanings as drug-fueled self-indulgence. However, if you stick The Rolling Stones in a studio for 8 months—especially a young almost in their prime version—the band will inevitably churn out a few memorable and perhaps even classic songs. "She's A Rainbow" was one. And "2000 Man" was another. With its off-kilter backbone of drumming, acoustic picked verse, and incredible organ-blasted shifts in mood and tempo, "2000 Man" is as unpredictable a track as it is a wildly creative and exciting one. In other words, it's the perfect fit for Dignan's (played by Owen Wilson) haphazard, erratic, and inevitably doomed attempt at post-robbery escape.
Martin Scorcese painted the relevance of the scene back in 2000 for Esquire:
A couple of years ago, I watched a film called 'Bottle Rocket.' I knew nothing about it, and the movie really took me by surprise. Here was a picture without a trace of cynicism, that obviously grew out of its director's affection for his characters in particular and for people in general. A rarity. And the central idea of the film is so delicate, so human: A group of young guys think that their lives have to be filled with risk and danger in order to be real. They don't know that it's okay simply to be who they are...
…Anderson has a fine sense of how music works against an image...the scene in Bottle Rocket when Owen Wilson's character, Dignan, says, "They'll never catch me, man, 'cause I'm fuckin' innocent." Then he runs off to save one of his partners in crime and gets captured by the police, over "2000 Man" by the Rolling Stones. He--and the music--are proclaiming who he really is: He's not innocent in the eyes of the law, but he's truly an innocent. For me, it's a transcendent moment. And transcendent moments are in short supply these days. (Esquire)
The Rolling Stones - "2000 Man" (from Their Satanic Majesties Request)