Newest Major Reviews:.This Month's Most Popular Reviews: Best-Selling Albums:
. 1. Transformers: Last Knight
2. Cars 3
3. The Mummy
4. Wonder Woman
5. POTC: Dead Men Tell No Tales
. . 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 March, 2009:





3/31/09Return to Paradise: (Mark Mancina) - All New Filmtracks Review, Replacing a Donated Review
Buy it... if you can't pull yourself away from lovely, exotic woodwind and percussion performances that contribute to one of Mark Mancina's most intoxicating dramatic scores.
Avoid it... if you expect a dramatic intensity in the non-thematic cues to match the thought-provoking nature of the film's character dilemma.
Rating:****   Read the entire review


3/29/09The Prince of Egypt: (Hans Zimmer/Stephen Schwartz) - Expanded Review
Buy it... on the commercial album if you seek only a survey of the film's cast songs and half of Hans Zimmer's occasionally epic score.
Avoid it... on all of the commercially available albums if you want a truly loyal representation of the music you actually hear in the film.
Rating:****   Read the entire review


3/28/09Halloween H20 (Portrait of Terror): (John Ottman) - Expanded Review
Buy it... if you're a fan of the Halloween franchise and want to hear the superior original score intended to be heard in the seventh film.
Avoid it... if you're accustomed to the level of orchestral and thematic creativity that John Ottman displayed in Usual Suspects and Incognito.
Rating:***   Read the entire review


3/27/09One True Thing: (Cliff Eidelman) - Expanded Review
Buy it... if you already maintain a collection of Cliff Eidelman's scores for character dramas and are open to his most subtle effort in the genre, one that could play unintrusively while you read or sleep.
Avoid it... if you expect the vibrance that Eidelman usually provides to his themes for these films, or if you expect to hear the Bette Midler song featured in the film.
Rating:***   Read the entire review


3/26/09Mighty Joe Young: (James Horner) - Expanded Review
Buy it... if a Swahili choir, distinctive wood-struck percussion, and synthetic ape sounds can compensate for an otherwise standard James Horner action score.
Avoid it... if you expect the ethnic accents in the music for Mighty Joe Young to feature anywhere near the same attractive flair as those in the just previous The Mask of Zorro.
Rating:**   Read the entire review


3/25/09The Mighty: (Trevor Jones) - Expanded Review
Buy it... if you could accept a score that merges traditional orchestral action, bluegrass rhythms, and Celtic instrumentation into an extremely inspirational and successful whole.
Avoid it... if you prefer your Trevor Jones material to have the straight orchestral might of his other 1998 scores and don't need a harmonica and Irish jigs to spoil the performances of the London Symphony Orchestra.
Rating:****   Read the entire review


3/23/09The Mask of Zorro: (James Horner) - Expanded Review
Buy it... if you truly want to hear James Horner take his trademark style of writing in a splashy and fascinatingly different ethnic direction, resulting in one of the most engaging and flavorful action scores of the digital era.
Avoid it... if you have no love for Latin instrumentation or were not impressed by the more robust and mature variation of this score in The Legend of Zorro.
Rating:*****   Read the entire review


3/22/09Life is Beautiful: (Nicola Piovani) - Expanded Review
Buy it... if you appreciate the lightweight and carefree attitude of Italy's fairly standard romantic comedy sound and want to introduce a Nicola Piovani entry into your American-centered collection.
Avoid it... if you expect the score to meet the hype generated by its Oscar win, for while it's easy to appreciate and enjoy in parts, it's more likely to underwhelm you with its restrained depth, stereotypical rhythms, and marginalized drama.
Rating:***   Read the entire review


3/21/09The Horse Whisperer: (Thomas Newman) - Expanded Review
Buy it... if you are content within Thomas Newman's comfort zone of colorful specialty instruments, understated orchestral themes, and highly personal spirit.
Avoid it... if you demand an epic presence for the setting of Montana and thus might be better served by investigating John Barry's rejected score for the film.
Rating:****   Read the entire review


3/20/09Great Expectations: (Patrick Doyle) - Expanded Review
Buy it... if you have an open mind for Patrick Doyle's most diverse score, ranging from a monumental operatic aria to percussively cool rhythms under alluring female vocals.
Avoid it... if you require a strong sense of cohesion in your scores, because Great Expectations is a stylistic whirlwind.
Rating:****   Read the entire review


3/19/09Deep Impact: (James Horner) - Expanded Review
Buy it... if you enjoy even James Horner's most derivative, mundane, and predictable scores, solid in construct and performance but lacking in originality.
Avoid it... if an abundance of "Hornerisms" and blatant self-references throughout the work, combined with an excruciatingly long album, are a recipe for tedium.
Rating:***   Read the entire review


3/18/09Dangerous Beauty: (George Fenton) - Expanded Review
Buy it... if a gorgeous and lushly dramatic cross between Anna and the King, Shadowlands, and George Fenton's later nature documentary music of the 2000's stands to be a safe addition to your collection.
Avoid it... if you detest unashamed romanticism and lyrical warmth in their most vibrant orchestral forms.
Rating:*****   Read the entire review


3/17/09A Bug's Life: (Randy Newman) - Expanded Review
Buy it... if you're an expressed fan of Randy Newman's predictable, but effectively jazzy scores and songs for animated films.
Avoid it... if Newman's sound for this genre borders on the generic for you, because A Bug's Life follows the composer's technique with precision.
Rating:***   Read the entire review


3/16/09The Avengers: (Joel McNeely) - Expanded Review
Buy it... if you're one of the few, unfortunate souls who actually witnessed this film and agree that Joel McNeely's relatively snazzy blend of orchestral and synthetic style was one of the few redeeming production values.
Avoid it... if the cost of the extremely rare album doesn't merit the surrealistic, unorganized mess that McNeely tried to tie together to form a cohesive musical identity for the film's senseless plot.
Rating:***   Read the entire review


3/15/09Frontiers: (Compilation) - Expanded Review
Buy it... if you consider yourself any remote collector of Jerry Goldsmith's works, for "Frontiers" is an outstanding survey of the composer's science fiction scores in crystal clear, precisely re-recorded sound quality.
Avoid it... if you've never found merit in Goldsmith's music for the Star Trek franchise and have no interest in the composer's obscure sci-fi works of the 1970's.
Rating:****   Read the entire review


3/14/09The Relic: (John Debney) - All New Filmtracks Review, Replacing a Donated Review
Buy it... only if you are a John Debney completist, for his mainstream debut in the horror genre is as pedestrian and underachieving as the film itself.
Avoid it... if you expect Debney to offer something beyond the usual, stock horror slashes and ensemble hits that define the genre's most tiresome cliches.
Rating:**   Read the entire review


3/12/09Poltergeist: (Jerry Goldsmith) - Expanded Review
Buy it... if you appreciate engaging and intelligent horror scores that slowly and brilliantly transform attractive harmony into frightfully atonal terror.
Avoid it... if the famous "Carol Anne's Theme" is too sweet for your palette and the secondary religious motifs in the score are too infrequently utilized to salvage the entirety for your non-horror preferences.
Rating:****   Read the entire review


3/11/09Octopussy: (John Barry) - Expanded Review
Buy it... if you prefer John Barry's more sentimental and conservative James Bond scores of the 1960's and 70's, for Octopussy is one last return to that more traditional style.
Avoid it... if you believe the formula of the early Bond scores by Barry causes them to overlap too often in theme and action rhythms, in which case the two more experimental scores following Octopussy are better suited for you.
Rating:****   Read the entire review


3/10/09Cocoon: (James Horner) - Expanded Review
Buy it... if you have always relaxed to James Horner's more lushly fluid dramatic themes but have never ventured back to his first official entry in the genre.
Avoid it... if the frightfully expensive pair of out of print albums for the score don't merit a mere twenty minutes of redeeming material that doesn't feature comparatively impressive sound quality anyway.
Rating:****   Read the entire review


3/7/09Tomorrow Never Dies: (David Arnold) - Expanded Review
Buy it... if you seek easily the best score of the Pierce Brosnan era of the franchise, with a superior mix of jazzy 1960's style and hard-nosed, techno-thrilling instrumentation.
Avoid it... on all the commercial albums if you want a fair and comprehensive presentation of music from the film.
Rating:****   Read the entire review


3/4/09Titanic: (James Horner) - Massively Expanded Review
Buy it... if you somehow missed the phenomenon when it debuted and you have an open mind about what is commonly considered the most famous and romantic film score of the digital era.
Avoid it... if even the price of $0.01 for the first Titanic album on the used-CD market isn't worth giving the best-selling score album in history a chance.
Rating:*****   Read the entire review


3/2/09Starship Troopers: (Basil Poledouris) - Expanded Review
Buy it... only if you seek the most militaristically brutal and bombastic score of Basil Poledouris' career, an explosive and simplistic series of harsh action cues with little development.
Avoid it... if the poor presentation of the music on the commercial album deters you from expanding upon an already large and representative collection of Poledouris' more intellectually stimulating music.
Rating:***   Read the entire review







Page created 3/20/09, updated 3/21/09. 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.