Each week I choose a song from a movie which may be popular or not. The only criteria is that its a great song and it fits the scene in the film perfectly. Let me know if you agree.
Ain’t No Sunshine – Bill Withers
“Ain’t no Sunshine “ was Bill Withers first hit for Stax Records which was on his first album Just as I am released in 1971. Produced by Booker T and won a Grammy for best song in 1971.
The track was used by in the 1999 film Notting Hill which was directed by Garry Marshall and written and Produced by Richard Curtis. Many saw it as just another vehicle for Hugh Grant to be Hugh Grant and overlooked the stellar performance by Julia Roberts who plays the damaged superstar actress brilliantly.
The other notable performance is by Rhys Ifans who plays Hugh Grants flatmate and essentially steals the whole film.
The story is one of William Thacker, an unsuccessful Notting Hill bookstore owner who meets Anna Scott, the world’s most beautiful woman and best-liked actress, in his shop.
A little later, he William runs into her again – this time spilling orange juice over her. Anna accepts his offer to change in his nearby apartment, and thanks him with a kiss, which seems to surprise her even more than him.
Eventually, Anna and William get to know each other better over the months, but being together with the world’s most wanted woman is not easy.
The song is played in the scene which Hugh Grant walks through Notting Hill Market through the four seasons in one shot. It is a masterpiece of scene choreography making it difficult to spot the edits. One point to notice is that at the start of the scene there is a pregnant woman looking at dresses at a stall, by the end of the scene she is seen holding a baby whilst buying flowers.
Another less interesting fact is that the apartment that William lived in was home to Richard Curtis some years previously.
Its a film full of great performances and captures Notting Hill Cafe culture beautifully