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Courage Under Fire
(1996)
Album Cover Art
Composed, Conducted, Orchestrated, and Produced by:
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LABEL & RELEASE DATE
Angel Records
(July 30th, 1996)
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ALBUM AVAILABILITY
Regular U.S. release, but out-of-print as of 1998.
Awards
AWARDS
None.
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   Availability | Viewer Ratings | Comments | Audio & Track Listings | Notes
Buy it... only if you are a devoted collector of James Horner's works and would be interested in hearing a preview to the action and drama techniques that would mature in several subsequent Horner scores.

Avoid it... if an underachieving pair of respectful themes and one short burst of instrumental and synthetic creativity don't warrant a compilation of mundane Hornerisms.
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EDITORIAL REVIEW
FILMTRACKS TRAFFIC RANK: #364
WRITTEN 9/24/96, REVISED 5/20/07
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Horner
Horner
Courage Under Fire: (James Horner) Director Edward Zwick would collaborate with Denzel Washington and much of the same crew from the 1989 film Glory for a refashioning of the concepts of Akira Kurosawa's 1950 classic Rashomon in Courage Under Fire. The story depicts the actions of a female helicopter pilot in the first Gulf War, and the differing accounts of her actions that leave Washington's character unsure about whether his office should make her the first ever female recipient of the Congressional Medal of Honor. We see essentially the same set of circumstances repeated four times, each from the account of surviving witnesses from the battle in question. Much of the hype surrounding the film at the time was the casting of romantic movie veteran Meg Ryan as the pilot, though she handles the various role shifts quite well. As with many of Zwick's films, Courage Under Fire would be extremely fine in its technical qualities, and he would once again hire composer James Horner to provide the music for his vision. Coming off of the extraordinary span of a year in which he had composed Braveheart, Apollo 13, and Legends of the Fall, among others, James Horner suffered somewhat of a lapse in his production during 1996 until Titanic would forever change his career the following year. Even the highly acclaimed, barely known score for The Spitfire Grill existed outside of the large-scale production quality of his music from the previous year. In retrospect, the score for Courage Under Fire makes much more sense than it did at the time. Seemingly uninspired when it debuted, the work was deemed adequate, but somewhat aimless, lacking in the emotional pull that Horner listeners had become accustomed to. In sum, the score was flat. But on a technical level, Courage Under Fire would prove to be a compilation of styles that Horner would eventually develop in his later scores. From the outside, it would sound as though he was testing a number of thematic and stylistic elements in this score for possible elaboration at a later date, and there is plenty of evidence to back that theory up.



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VIEWER RATINGS
1,070 TOTAL VOTES
Average: 3.07 Stars
***** 211 5 Stars
**** 226 4 Stars
*** 254 3 Stars
** 189 2 Stars
* 190 1 Stars
  (View results for all titles)

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COMMENTS
5 TOTAL COMMENTS
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Review at Movie Wave
Southall - August 16, 2015, at 1:14 p.m.
1 comment  (303 views)
My all-time favorite Horner score
Nick - March 13, 2008, at 1:34 p.m.
1 comment  (2369 views)
This Is a Beautiful Score!   Expand >>
Craig Richard Lysy - March 13, 2008, at 7:56 a.m.
3 comments  (3878 views)
Newest: March 23, 2009, at 7:42 p.m. by
David Lounsberry
More...


Track Listings Icon
TRACK LISTINGS AND AUDIO
Audio Samples   ▼
Total Time: 54:25
• 1. Hymn (3:39)
• 2. Al Bathra/Main title (10:12)
• 3. Friendly Fire/Ilario's Story (3:07)
• 4. The Elegy (3:46)
• 5. Courage Under Fire (6:38)
• 6. Monfriez's Suicide (3:21)
• 7. Night Mutany (2:58)
• 8. The Betrayal (3:10)
• 9. Playing Back the Tape (2:55)
• 10. The Medal of Honor/A Final Resting Place (14:39)

Notes Icon
NOTES AND QUOTES
The insert includes no extra information about the score or film.
Copyright © 1996-2017, Filmtracks Publications. All rights reserved.
The reviews and other textual content contained on the filmtracks.com site may not be published, broadcast, rewritten
or redistributed without the prior written authority of Christian Clemmensen at Filmtracks Publications. All artwork and sound clips from Courage Under Fire are Copyright © 1996, Angel Records and cannot be redistributed without the label's expressed written consent. Page created 9/24/96 and last updated 5/20/07.
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