Making a list? Checking it twice? Here are some guidelines to keep befuddled spouses, parents of teenagers and others on the right track.

**** VARIOUS ARTISTS, "Romeo & Juliet" soundtrack, Capitol. Like "Purple Rain" and "Dead Man Walking," this is one of the few soundtrack albums able to transcend the visually arresting movies themselves. The sounds are eclectic, ranging from gospel and R&B; to trip-hop, but it all makes sense.

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Albums and other items in the Gift Guide are rated on a scale of one star (poor), two stars (fair), three stars (good) and four stars (excellent).

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