When Galen was here a couple of months ago, I brushed the dust off of my guitar, and she played Leonard Cohen’s Hallelujah while Amy and I sang along. I had heard about the song via kottke a year earlier, when he linked to the “It Doesn’t Matter Which You Heard”: the Curious Cultural Journey of Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah”. It’s good reading, but it wasn’t until we sang with G that I actually heard the song for the first time.
It’s on my mind again because the makers of Watchmen used it as the mood music for the love scene in The Watchmen. I thought it a curious choice; at least one critic thought it cheesy:
Speaking of acts of congress, “Watchmen” features this year’s hands-down winner of the bad movie sex award, superhero division: a moment of bliss that takes place on board Nite Owl’s nifty little airship, accompanied by Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah.” (By the way, can we please have a moratorium on the use of this song in movies? Yes, I too have heard there was a secret chord that David played, and blah blah blah, but I don’t want to hear it again. Do you?)
So, that’s the curious cultural journey of “Hallelujah” in my own life. Like many songs, I liked it best the way I heard it first. In case you haven’t heard it before, here it is, courtesty of YouTube: