“Back in Time” by Pitbull: Men in Black 3’s theme song

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Will Smith isn’t doing the theme song for Men in Black 3. Instead, it’s Pitbull, with a track called “Back in Time.” It’s nowhere near as good as the Huey Lewis and the News song, but at least it’s better than the song from The Legend of Bagger Vance (some guy snoring in a mostly empty theater). Give it a listen here:

You no doubt noticed the sample from “Love is Strange” by Mickey & Sylvia, which makes me think that the original song may play a part in the film. Hopefully it involves Young Agent K and an alien reenacting the above scene from Dirty Dancing. Or maybe Young Agent K and Old Agent K. I also noticed shades of Swedish singer Günther in the spoken parts, which makes me think of Günther doing an MIB theme. It would have been superior to this, the music glistening with kitsch and sweat.

I understand the impulse to sample the 1956 song, especially for a movie about time travel. The end result, however, is haphazard; nothing really coheres. “Back in Time” sounds less like a theme song and more like background; it’s movie music for moments when you’re not supposed to pay attention to the music, and mere filler for the soundtrack album. But to quote Carl Wilson from his great 33 1/3 book on Celine Dion’s Let’s Talk About Love: “Maybe ‘filler’ is just the name we give to the songs aimed at the members of the audience who are least similar to us.”

After the cut, the two previous MIB songs as points of comparison; also just for kicks, one of my favorite DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince songs.

[Via The Playlist]

“Men in Black” by Will Smith

“Black Suits Comin’ (Nod Ya Head)” by Will Smith

“Summertime” by DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince

Hubert Vigilla
Brooklyn-based fiction writer, film critic, and long-time editor and contributor for Flixist. A booster of all things passionate and idiosyncratic.