American Graffiti32. 'American Graffiti' (1973)

Highlights: 'Why Do Fools Fall in Love?' by Frankie Lymon & the Teenagers, 'Green Onions' by Booker T. & the MG's

Why It's a Hit: This 2-disc, 41-track collection is 'American Graffiti.' With no money left to produce a conventional score for the film, writer-director George Lucas had only his handpicked soundtrack of early '60s hits -- from the likes of Buddy Holly, the Beach Boys, Chuck Berry and the Platters -- to help move the story along.

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31. 'Shaft' (1971)

Highlights: 'Theme From Shaft,' 'Shaft's Cab Ride' by Isaac Hayes

Why It's a Hit: We all know Richard Roundtree's Shaft is a bad mutha (shut yo mouth!), but it was the late Isaac Hayes who provided the soul power on this 15-track album that mixes "baby-making" grooves with funkier, more upbeat toe-tappers.

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30. 'Almost Famous' (2000)

Highlights: 'America' by Simon & Garfunkel, 'Tiny Dancer' by Elton John

Why It's a Hit: With classics from the Who, Led Zeppelin, Yes, Rod Stewart and David Bowie -- and, of course, fictitious Stillwater's fictitious hit 'Fever Dog' -- this album achieves what all soundtracks set out to: It takes you back through the music-filled scenes of the movie, every time you play it.

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29. 'The Wackness' (2008)

Highlights: 'Can I Kick It?' by A Tribe Called Quest, 'The World Is Yours' by Nas

Why It's a Hit: Anyone who came of age during the so-called Golden Era of hip-hop can revel in this top-notch collection of '90s rap hits that also features Notorious B.I.G., KRS-One and the Wu-Tang Clan. Wack it ain't.

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28. 'Reservoir Dogs' (1992)

Highlights:
'Stuck in the Middle With You' by Stealers Wheel, 'I Gotcha' by Joe Tex, 'Fool for Love' by Sandy Rogers

Why It's a Hit: In true Tarantino style (he produced the album), 'Dogs' is known for an ingenious pairing of '70s pop music with a violent storyline. Exhibit A: Mr. Blonde's bloody torture of a cop with Stealers Wheel's 'Stuck in the Middle With You' playing on the radio. Other highlights include film dialogue samples (e.g., 'Super Sounds'), which redefined the modern-day soundtrack.

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27. 'High Fidelity' (2000)

Highlights: 'I Believe (When I Fall in Love It Will Be Forever)' by Stevie Wonder, 'Dry the Rain' by the Beta Band

Why It's a Hit: This compilation of indie-pop gems -- by Smog, Stereolab, the 13th Floor Elevators, and lesser-known Bob Dylan and Elvis Costello -- was clearly made by music geeks, for music geeks, as befitting a movie about a record-store owner who knows his music better than he knows his heart. But one quibble: Where, for the love of vinyl, is Lisa Bonet's cover of 'Baby I Love Your Way'?

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26. 'Once' (2007)

Highlights: 'Falling Slowly' and 'If You Want Me' by Glen Hansard & Markéta Irglová

Why It's a Hit: The film's whimsically incorporated ballads are good for "falling slowly" time and time again on repeat, with tracks at once hopelessly romantic and heart-achingly sad. Bonus: Irglová owns one of the Academy Award's all-time cutest moments.

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25. 'Footloose' (1984)

Highlights: 'Footloose' by Kenny Loggins, 'Let's Hear It for the Boy' by Deniece Williams

Why It's a Hit: This soundtrack was no. 1 on the Billboard 200 Pop Album chart when it was released, and for good reason -- what would the tractor race have been without the breathlessness of Bonnie Tyler's 'Holding Out for a Hero'? And can you think of a better dance lesson montage in movie history? Let's hear it for the music.

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