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Comments about the soundtrack for The Sword and the Sorcerer (David Whitaker)

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Filmtracks Sponsored Donated Review
• Posted by: Jon Turner   <Send E-Mail>
• Date: Monday, June 16, 2008, at 8:13 p.m.
• IP Address:

(The following donated review by Jon Turner was moved by Filmtracks to this comment section in June, 2008)

The Sword and the Sorcerer: (David Whitaker) It's somewhat funny that a gem can be found under a pile of dirt. The Sword and the Sorcerer was one of the very worst movies I had ever seen in a long time (if not at all), due to its excessive scenes of gore and blood(!), contrived (and extremely poor) story development(!!) and completely dislikable characters(!!!). However, if there is one thing I can praise about it, it could be its musical score, which is quite superior. It has got all the spark, pizazz, and magic a fantasy film like The Sword and the Sorcerer should have been.

I remember listening to the original LP release of this soundtrack so many years ago, and I remember enjoying it very much. The music itself is an exciting adventure, with a certain playful flair. The first track in particular is quite exciting and impressive. However, there are some moments in the soundtrack when the music gets dark and foreboding, particularly "Main Title/Tomb Island/Xusia Stabbed", and "Xusia's Cave", which are extremely spooky enough to create horrifying visions, which is ironically, what the film succeeds in doing as well. It should be noted in these songs that we hear the theme for one of the film's characters, the bad-tempered sorcerer, Xusia. His theme is a descending two-note third interval, which is emphasized in a loud, explosive sort of way, as if to symbolize that he has a nasty temper, respectably.

The music is basically boomy and militaristic, but there is one beautiful track that helps ease the tone. "Alana's Theme" and the Love Theme are both ravishing and relaxing, even though, like the rest of this music itself, it is rousing. The battle themes also have a lighthearted flair, with a heavy use of percussion and brass march notes. The most rousing of these battle songs are the final one, "Fight To The Death/Aftermath". It's not fast, but it's really furious, which is what makes this final battle cue stand out.

Unfortunately, some of the tracks are badly mislabeled. For example, "Talon vs Cromwell/The Fight in the Water" is actually "Elizabeth's Death", and "The Bordello" actually has the first part of the "Castle Chase" cue. However, this is only a minor glitch in this otherwise superior release soundtrack. Only those who own the LP release and have seen the film (which I'm embarrassed to admit that I did see it) will recognize it. Others might not even care. Overall, this is a terrific musical score, one which I highly recommend, but don't make the same mistake I made in thinking that the film would be this good. Although the score is rousing and entertaining, the movie it is from, unfortunately, is not. ****

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