Newest Major Reviews:.This Month's Most Popular Reviews: Best-Selling Albums:
. 1. Beauty and the Beast
2. The Boss Baby
3. Logan
4. The Lego Batman Movie
5. Fifty Shades Darker
. . 1. Star Wars: Force Awakens
2. E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial
3. Titanic
4. Avatar
5. Nineteen Eighty-Four
6. Gladiator
7. Star Wars: A New Hope
8. Animal Farm
9. LOTR: Fellowship of the Ring
10. Harry Potter: Sorcerer's Stone
. . 1. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
2. Fantastic Beasts/Find Them
3. Willow
4. The Ghost and the Darkness
5. An American Tail
Filmtracks On Cue


On Cue for April, 2009:





4/30/09Entrapment: (Christopher Young) - Expanded Review
Buy it... if you are a fan of Christopher Young's attempts to emulate the 1990's action styles of Jerry Goldsmith, even if those endeavors are marginally successful.
Avoid it... if you expect the score to avoid the same coherency problems that plague the film itself, for Young's music has no central personality.
Rating:**   Read the entire review


4/29/09End of Days: (John Debney) - Expanded Review
Buy it... if you like your apocalyptic bombast to feature the resounding depth of a large orchestra, ethnic instrumentation, choral solos and ensembles, and a variety of finely tuned electronics.
Avoid it... if you require a straight-forward "Carmina Burana" style of harmonic force that is largely betrayed by John Debney's insertion of harsh industrial tones into this score.
Rating:****   Read the entire review


4/28/09The Deep End of the Ocean: (Elmer Bernstein) - Expanded Review
Buy it... if you seek a soft, nostalgic, and sensitive tribute by Elmer Bernstein to the introverted personal style common to his early Golden Age years.
Avoid it... if you have no affinity for Bernstein's two most similar scores during the last eight years of his career, Frankie Starlight and Far From Heaven.
Rating:****   Read the entire review


4/27/09Deep Blue Sea: (Trevor Rabin) - Expanded Review
Buy it... if you hold a soft spot for the stereotypical Media Ventures blockbuster scores of the late 1990's, this one being among Trevor Rabin's most impressive entries.
Avoid it... if you expect more substance than gloss, for Rabin's music is highlighted by simplistic harmonic structures that strive for attractive rendering rather than intellectual development.
Rating:***   Read the entire review


4/26/09Crusade (Babylon 5): (Evan H. Chen) - Expanded Review
Buy it... only if you have absolutely come to terms with the spin-off show and know exactly what you're asking for.
Avoid it... if you're looking for anything remotely close to being an extension of Christopher Franke's better known and vastly superior sound for the rest of the "Babylon 5" franchise.
Rating:FRISBEE   Read the entire review


4/25/09The Cider House Rules: (Rachel Portman) - Expanded Review
Buy it... if you mourn the loss of Georges Delerue in the world of romantically dramatic film score writing or seek Rachel Portman's most consistent entry in that genre during the height of her career.
Avoid it... if you expect the creativity in thematic diversity or instrumentation that Portman would provide to nearly the same sound in The Legend of Bagger Vance.
Rating:****   Read the entire review


4/24/09Bowfinger: (David Newman) - Expanded Review
Buy it... if you appreciate 1970's retro funk in the mould of Lalo Schifrin, for Bowfinger uses it almost constantly to carry its cheesy attitude.
Avoid it... if you're a traditional David Newman fan curious about the magnificent three-minute orchestral finale cue that is available on a compilation elsewhere.
Rating:**   Read the entire review


4/23/09The Bone Collector: (Craig Armstrong) - Expanded Review
Buy it... if you like your scores for urban thrillers to feature an intelligent, edgy blend of orchestral power, choral beauty, and a sophisticated industrial edge.
Avoid it... if you've never been impressed by the general style of Craig Armstrong's scores, for The Bone Collector is among the most typical of his career in terms of instrumental and rhythmic style.
Rating:****   Read the entire review


4/22/09Body Shots: (Mark Isham) - Expanded Review
Buy it... if a bleak environment of mostly subdued techno-erotic electronica is your idea of a good time.
Avoid it... if you require anything more than a cold and dark synthetic environment, devoid of personality or thematic and instrumental cohesion.
Rating:*   Read the entire review


4/21/09Bicentennial Man: (James Horner) - Expanded Review
Buy it... if you seek a test of your James Horner knowledge, for you can consider yourself a true fan of the composer if you can identify no less than ten (yes, ten!) previous Horner scores that are merged to form the music for Bicentennial Man.
Avoid it... if the above prospect is as dreaded as those old standardized tests for school.
Rating:***   Read the entire review


4/20/09Batman Beyond: (Shirley Walker/Various) - Expanded Review
Buy it... only if you are a loyal fan of the show itself, which in and of itself indicates that you have the kind of character to actually enjoy such vicious, hard rock trash.
Avoid it... if you have ever remotely entertained the thought of using an assault weapon against a group of fellow human beings.
Rating:FRISBEE   Read the entire review


4/19/09At First Sight: (Mark Isham) - Expanded Review
Buy it... if you're among the vast majority that will seek the album for its easy-going collection of Louis Armstrong and Ella Fitzgerald songs.
Avoid it... if you expect any truly compelling drama to come from the 20+ minutes of Mark Isham's mundane score on the album's first half.
Rating:**   Read the entire review


4/18/09Angela's Ashes: (John Williams) - Expanded Review
Buy it... if you are moved by all of John Williams' scores of immense weight for historical dramas, despite the potentially cold atmosphere necessitated by Angela's Ashes' grim, unglorified story.
Avoid it... if you seek vibrant instrumental solos or distinctive vocals in your dramatic Williams scores of the 1990's, or if you're potentially bothered by the fact that the composer's theme is highly derivative of others in his career.
Rating:****   Read the entire review


4/16/09The 13th Warrior: (Graeme Revell/Jerry Goldsmith) - Expanded Review
Buy it... if you like getting slapped across the face for an hour by some of the most ambitious and uncomplicated action material ever produced in Jerry Goldsmith's career.
Avoid it... if you expect any true sense of ethnic diversity or thematic nuance, in which case you'd be better served by the bootlegs of Graeme Revell's rejected score for the film.
Rating:****   Read the entire review


4/15/09Michael Kamen's Opus: (Compilation) - Expanded Review
Buy it... if you seek a competent survey of mostly Michael Kamen's more obscure works, including re-orchestrated performances of some old favorites as well.
Avoid it... if you're bothered by the lack of many of the composer's best scores in the selections, in addition to the surprisingly new identities of cues orchestrated so differently that they lose their original personality.
Rating:****   Read the entire review


4/13/09The Living Daylights: (John Barry) - Expanded Review
Buy it... if you're looking for one John Barry score from the James Bond franchise to start a collection with, for The Living Daylights is the ultimate maturation of the composer's work for the concept.
Avoid it... if the addition of synthesizers and drum loops to the jazzy orchestral tradition of the franchise could be just as obnoxious to you here as it was in A View to a Kill.
Rating:*****   Read the entire review


4/12/09Ffolkes: (Michael J. Lewis) - Expanded Review
Buy it... if you want a campy and fun (but occasionally impressive) alternative to the James Bond scores.
Avoid it... if a heroically pompous and borderline trite variant on the elite British military concept isn't serious enough in its intent to contend with the franchise that inspired it.
Rating:***   Read the entire review


4/9/09Close Encounters of the Third Kind: (John Williams) - Expanded Review
Buy it... on the 1998 Arista album with reservations, because despite being the best presentation of the score, it features far more of the atonal ambience that John Williams wrote for the first half of the film.
Avoid it... on any of the releases of the original score before 1998, for their sound quality is significantly inferior (and they might contain a horrendous disco version of the title theme).
Rating:****   Read the entire review


4/8/09Wide Awake: (Edmund Choi) - Expanded Review
Buy it... if you're game for what sounds like a late-1990's John Debney interpretation of John Williams' famous children's score for Home Alone.
Avoid it... if the grace and charm of a full orchestral ensemble and boy's choir are not an attraction unless they hit you repeatedly over the head with obvious thematic statements.
Rating:***   Read the entire review


4/7/09What Dreams May Come: (Michael Kamen) - Expanded Review
Buy it... if one of Michael Kamen's most robust orchestral scores can lure you away from the popular rejected score by Ennio Morricone for the film.
Avoid it... if you expect the straight forward romanticism that defined some of Kamen's more impressive love themes and accompanying songs.
Rating:****   Read the entire review


4/6/09The Thin Red Line: (Hans Zimmer) - Expanded Review
Buy it... if you appreciated the restrained and brooding atmosphere of the music as you heard it in the film, for The Thin Red Line is not a score to effectively approach without context.
Avoid it... if you are in search for more than just one short Melanesian song featured in the film, many of which were compiled onto a separate soundtrack album.
Rating:***   Read the entire review


4/5/09Small Soldiers: (Jerry Goldsmith) - Expanded Review
Buy it... if you have an affinity for the parody style of Jerry Goldsmith's The 'Burbs and don't mind hearing several of the composer's famous scores pulled together for a robust, militaristic barrage of comedy.
Avoid it... on the commercial album from Varese Sarabande if you're in search of a piece of music you heard in the film itself, for it offers only one third of the music recorded for the production.
Rating:****   Read the entire review


4/4/09Shakespeare in Love: (Stephen Warbeck) - Expanded Review
Buy it... if you seek a charming souvenir from the film, with consistently pleasant tones that competently mirror the enthusiastic and lightweight drama on screen.
Avoid it... if you expect to hear more than two performances of the score's famous, bubbly title theme, which, along with the other themes, is poorly developed and ultimately unsatisfying in its brevity.
Rating:****   Read the entire review


4/2/09Saving Private Ryan: (John Williams) - Expanded Review
Buy it... only if you are a true John Williams collector, for Saving Private Ryan is among the maestro's least enjoyable stand-alone listening experiences.
Avoid it... if you expect the dramatic weight of the music for Schindler's List or the dynamic, engaging appeal of Williams' other famous scores for Steven Spielberg's films.
Rating:***   Read the entire review


4/1/09Ronin: (Elia Cmiral) - All New Filmtracks Review, Replacing a Donated Review
Buy it... if you are attracted to both the edgy orchestrations of Elliot Goldenthal's thrillers and the slashing techno-inspired rhythms of Eric Serra's action.
Avoid it... if you expect the substantial chase music to adequately merge with the solemn title theme for duduk and strings, because Elia Cmiral's score never adequately blends the lines of its two distinct halves.
Rating:***   Read the entire review







Page created 4/18/09, updated 4/19/09. Version 2.1 (Filmtracks Publications). Copyright © 2009, Christian Clemmensen. All rights reserved. "Real Audio" logo and .ra are Copyright © 1996, Real Audio (www.realaudio.com). "Academy Awards" and the Oscar statue are ® AMPAS, 1996.