The Tango! (True Lies)

I’ve been searching hard for the Tango song used in True Lies when Arnold is dancing with Carrera with no luck. I know it’s a very generic and popular piece so the search has been quite tough. Couldn’t find anything on imdb either.

Any dopers know where I could find the exact song used for the movie (I believe the same song used in the beginning of Schindler’s List also)? Best bet is to find it on iTunes, which is what I prefer, but no luck. Oh the agony.

Thanks in advance

It is an instrumental version of “Por una cabeza”. iTunes has a brazillion versions of it by every imaginable singer. This is the ultimate tango cliche. I am sure you will find one to your liking. If you are looking for one with the vocals, allow me to recommend you find it sung by “Carlos Gardel”, of course.

I am not sure who the composer is, but some googling point to William Schimmel.

Por Una Cabeza. Familiar part comes in around 1:10.

Who shot the piano player? Still, beautiful…


And here is the actual scene from the film Scent of a Woman

If you’re curious, like I was, that other “tango song”, the one that goes “dun DUN dun dun… duh da da da dun da - dun DUN dun dun” etc… is “La Cumparsita”.

:smiley: That is a pretty good rendering of it.

Carlos Gardel wrote the tune for “Por una Cabeza” & Alfredo Le Pera wrote the lyrics. I was pretty sure–Wikipedia says I was right. And also points out that the song is now copyright free–therefore, especially attractive to producers.

Here’s Gardel himself

I love that tune, and it is indeed Gardel’s “Por Una Cabeza.” The song’s on the soundtrack albums of neither *Scent of a Woman * nor True Lies, IIRC, but I found it on iTunes by The Tango Project. The performance is either the exact same one used in the movies, or damned close. Check it out.

I’m surprised you couldn’t find anything on I posted to a True Lies thread about the tango there awhile back; it’s a recurring question.

linky no worky:

I am amazed that there is a wiki entry for a single song.

Thanks for fixing the Wikipedia link! The song entry was apparently begun by Wikiproject Uruguay–perhaps by a Uruguayan wishing to claim El Rey del Tango for his own country? (Gardel said he was born in France, but there’s also a story it was Uruguay. Of course, he lived most of his life in Argentina.)

Here’s an interesting bit of the legend from Wikipedia.


The Obamas danced the tango in Argentina to “Por Una Cabeza”:

Here’s the scene from True Lies: