Get Carter

Get Carter is possibly Roy Budd’s most famous film composition, starring Michael Caine, John Osborne, Britt Ekland, and written and directed by Mike Hodges. Recognised as a cult classic, Get Carter is a violent gangster film, with a terrific raging Michael Caine, aiming to revenge his brother’s death. Roy’s music superbly accentuates the calculated escalation of the violence in the film.

Roy can be seen here playing along with the opening scene of the film:

The 2000 re-make of Get Carter, starring Sylvester Stallone with Mickey Rourke, Alan Cummings and Michael Caine (doing a cameo for fun) used Roy’s very recognisable original sound tracks, rearranged by Tyler Bates. The theme can often be found sampled, as in the 1983 album ‘Dare’ from ‘The Human League’. Most recently, an arrangement has featured on the award winning ad for Honda:


On the DVD release of Roy’s final film score for The Phantom of the Opera, you can watch an interview with Mike Hodges, discussing his experience of filming Get Carter, and working with Roy.





Desert Island DiscsOn the 11th of March, renowned philosopher John Gray was interviewed by BBC presenter Kirsty Young for an edition of the popular programme Desert Island Discs. Among the pieces chosen by Gray as his favourites was Roy Budd’s theme from Get Carter. “I myself, although I came to self-awareness in the late 60s, preferred the 70s because they had a harder edge. The art and the film were closer to the truth of the matter than before or after. Get Carter, the film, doesn’t pull any punches. It doesn’t end with any redemptive significance and yet it’s a beautiful film. It’s a film in which there’s great poetry and a certain kind of lyricism which is in the music. But it’s certainly not an optimistic film.”