Few movies have excited me this year as much as The Edge of Seventeen. Even as I grow older and become less able to recall specifics like the agony of shopping for a sparkly homecoming dress that actually fits, or the weird musty stink of the carpets in public high school classrooms (okay, actually my memory of that smell is still pretty strong), I'm still magnetically drawn to teenage coming-of-age movies, especially when they have a female protagonist. The Edge of Seventeen is a great addition to the genre, with Hailee Steinfeld playing a high-schooler who is trying to figure out — with the help of a cool wisecracking teacher — how to grow up and feel OK. Naturally, music plays as big role in setting the movie's tone as it does in a teenager's life, and The Edge of Seventeen soundtrack, which comes out on Nov. 18, will make you feel like a teenager again.
You can find the track listing for the soundtrack on Amazon (where you can pre-order it if you are too eager to wait until Nov. 18), and the mix of contemporary hits, nostalgic classics, and indie stunners manages to hit almost as many emotions as a standard teenager is capable of feeling (which is to say, like, a zillion), and will make you feel like you're on that weird adolescent roller coaster of feels once again.
Every song seems like a perfect fit for the movie, but below are a few of The Edge of Seventeen soundtrack's emotion-driven highlights.
"Who I Thought You Were" — Santigold
Poppy and danceable but also communicating a very real sense of betrayal, this song (in addition to sounding like a lost track from Tegan and Sara's Heartthrob) is the perfect thing to put on a mix tape for your bestie when you want to passive-aggressively communicate that you're mad at them but also want the excuse of "no, I just thought it was catchy" in case you chicken out.
"Big Jet Plane" — Angus And Julia Stone
This song is deeply romantic but also has an undeniable tone of melancholy and longing, as if the beautiful romance it alludes to may never happen. Great for pining.
"Bad Decisions" — Two Door Cinema Club
Deeply '80s-indebted and super invigorating, this song is good for soundtracking the rush of, yes, making some bad decisions that feel really good—or perhaps more likely as an awkward teen, dancing around your bedroom on Friday night wishing you were making those bad decisions.
"When They Fight, They Fight" — Generationals
Pure sunny celebration music, this 2009 song has the tambourine jangle and sweet psych-pop vibe of the California-cool sixties.
"Somebody Else" — The 1975
So much angsty, groovy, synth-y heartbreak. Good for screaming in the shower while also sort of crying. Also good for wishfully thinking that someone else is singing it about you, even though you maybe just spilled the milk from your Fruit Loops on the bed and you've gotten like six new zits in the past four hours somehow. (The video is inexplicably over eight minutes long but skip to 3:10 for the start of music and Matt Healy's tearful distraught breakdown.)
"Save Me" — Aimee Mann
A perfect, classic acoustic sing-songwriter waterfall of feelings. Take a walk alone on a brisk, gray fall day and listen to this song and feel utterly foolish and strangely wise at the same time.
These songs are some of the standouts, but really every track on The Edge of Seventeen soundtrack is golden, and for better and worse, they'll make you feel just like a teenager again.
Images: STX Entertainment