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Justice League
(2017)
Album Cover Art
Composed and Produced by:

Conducted by:
Rick Wentworth

Orchestrated by:
Steve Bartek
Edgardo Simone
David Slonaker
Ed Trybek

Additional Music by:
T.J. Lindgren
Geoff Zanelli
Pinar Toprak
Labels Icon
LABEL & RELEASE DATE
WaterTower Music
(December 8th, 2017)
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ALBUM AVAILABILITY
Regular U.S. release, the CD album less expensive initially than the download option. Also available on vinyl.
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AWARDS
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   Availability | Viewer Ratings | Comments | Track Listings | Notes
Buy it... if you have always longed to hear a composer combine classic superhero themes with the propulsive, muscular style of the genre's contemporary sound, Danny Elfman achieving a solid merging of the techniques for this ensemble film.

Avoid it... if you simply cannot watch your DC Comics characters conduct a proper ass-kicking without overbearingly brutal and oppressive, bass-heavy music, a sound clearly rejected for this film.
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EDITORIAL REVIEW
FILMTRACKS TRAFFIC RANK: #1,742
WRITTEN 12/29/17
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Elfman
Elfman
Justice League: (Danny Elfman) After nurturing its rebooted properties throughout the early 2010's, the DC Comics cinematic universe was finally prepared to follow its Marvel sibling into the ensemble cast realm by throwing a bevy of its established characters into one flick. In the case of 2017's Justice League, however, several new characters are introduced in the film, causing justified complaints about the lack of development for each in the rather thin plot. The story revolves around Batman and Wayne Manor as the glue that holds the fledgling group together as they attempt to resurrect Superman. Primary billing goes to Batman and Wonder Woman as they lead the "Justice League" against famed DC super-villain Steppenwolf, who intends to collect a number of "Mother Boxes" with which he can rule the Earth. The story of Justice League is an absolute mess, in part because too many DC elements were explored all at once for one script, and in part because of significant post-production changes that required extensive rewrites and reshoots. Director Zack Snyder, sidelined late in the process by a family tragedy, turned the production over to writer and genre veteran Joss Whedon, who in turn took over as director during the final stages of production. While the movie still grossed well enough at the box office, it was received poorly by critics and failed to match the prior DC films of the era in returns. Depending on your perspective, however, Justice League is an opportunity to correct a disturbing trend towards sound design in the soundtracks of its movies, a decision guided by Snyder and composer Hans Zimmer since Man of Steel for the former and Batman Begins for the latter. While the Marvel films have preferred more dynamic, traditional orchestral scores built upon heroic leitmotifs, the DC alternatives have supplied Zimmer and his crew of associates' preferred style of morbid brooding consistently until Rupert Gregson-Williams' Wonder Woman earlier in 2017. With Zimmer claiming to bow out of superhero scores after Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, Tom Holkenborg ("Junkie XL") was set to reunite with Snyder to provide the music for Justice League. With Whedon taking the helm, however, the composer of choice was switched to superhero music guru Danny Elfman, whose hiring caused a polarizing stir amongst concept fans.

For enthusiasts of the Zimmer and Holkenborg approach to bass-dwelling force of simplicity and darkness for the DC universe, the hiring of Elfman for Justice League represented a frustratingly backwards move toward a nostalgia that no longer applies to the tone of modern superhero films. After all, it was Zimmer who declared Elfman's classic Batman score of 1989 to be irrelevant in the newer generation of more depressingly divisive superhero depictions. There remains debate about the validity of this claim, though scholars of music can argue well that the tone and style of any musical identity can be altered to fit any circumstance. Thus, something as noble as John Williams' 1978 Superman theme can be shifted in chords and instrumentation to serve a gloomy purpose quite easily. The same can be said of Elfman's Batman theme, which was already rooted in intelligently conflicted battle between major and minor modes from its inception, a technique that makes far more sense for the Wayne/Batman duality than anything Zimmer and his team conjured for the character. Not surprisingly, after his arrival on Justice League, Elfman jovially poked Zimmer in the eye (though the two men are reportedly on friendly terms) by stating that there has only ever been one true Batman theme for the big screen, and that his 1989 identity would return in this score. Not only that, but Williams' Superman was also to be adapted, and fandom pandemonium broke loose both in support and against the decision. Lost in all the commotion is the plain fact that Elfman's writing chops in this genre remain outstanding regardless of thematic attributions, his music for the original Spider-Man gaining in reputation as reboots of that character continue to fall short of Elfman's 2002 original and his contributions to 2015's Avengers: Age of Ultron highly memorable. Regardless of the themes used, Elfman's style of writing in Justice League is simply superb, almost entirely organic as he appropriately addresses each emotional point of interest with a keen sense of orchestral and choral potential. Possibly the most impressive aspect of this score is Elfman's ability to adapt his writing style, much like Patrick Doyle did in the 2010's, to the prevailingly pounding, bass-heavy, minor-third rhythm environment made popular by Zimmer for this universe. Elfman's score is heavy on the bass region and churns through rhythms mercilessly to ensure that the ballsy force of the Zimmer sound isn't entirely lost in the comparatively non-processed rendering.



Ratings Icon
VIEWER RATINGS
195 TOTAL VOTES
Average: 3.68 Stars
***** 55 5 Stars
**** 69 4 Stars
*** 38 3 Stars
** 20 2 Stars
* 13 1 Stars
  (View results for all titles)

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COMMENTS
4 TOTAL COMMENTS
Read All Start New Thread Search Comments
Bias against Hans Zimmer?   Expand >>
Ds - January 2, 2018, at 5:57 a.m.
3 comments  (807 views)
Newest: February 9, 2018, at 3:38 p.m. by
HM
Danny Elfman's wonderful expulsions!
Singing Poop Emoji - December 31, 2017, at 4:10 p.m.
1 comment  (362 views)
More...


Track Listings Icon
TRACK LISTINGS
Total Time: 101:31
CD1: (75:47)
• 1. Everybody Knows - performed by Sigrid (4:25)
• 2. The Justice League Theme - Logos (0:48)
• 3. Hero's Theme (4:17)
• 4. Batman on the Roof (2:34)
• 5. Enter Cyborg (2:00)
• 6. Wonder Woman Rescue (2:43)
• 7. Hippolyta's Arrow (1:16)
• 8. The Story of Steppenwolf (2:59)
• 9. The Amazon Mother Box (4:33)
• 10. Cyborg Meets Diana (2:36)
• 11. Aquaman in Atlantis (2:39)
• 12. Then There Were Three (1:10)
• 13. The Tunnel Fight (6:24)
• 14. The World Needs Superman (1:00)
• 15. Spark of the Flash (2:18)
• 16. Friends and Foes (4:14)
• 17. Justice League United (1:24)
• 18. Home (3:24)
• 19. Bruce and Diana (1:06)
• 20. The Final Battle (6:14)
• 21. A New Hope (4:36)
• 22. Anti-Hero's Theme (5:35)
• 23. Come Together - performed by Gary Clark Jr. and Junkie XL (3:13)
• 24. Icky Thump - performed by The White Stripes (4:14)

CD2: Bonus Tracks: (25:44)
• 1. The Tunnel Fight (Full Length) (10:58)
• 2. The Final Battle (Full Length) (12:57)
• 3. Mother Russia (1:45)

Notes Icon
NOTES AND QUOTES
The insert includes extensive photography from the recording sessions but no extra information about the score or film.
Copyright © 2017-2018, 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 Justice League are Copyright © 2017, WaterTower Music and cannot be redistributed without the label's expressed written consent. Page created 12/29/17 (and not updated significantly since).
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