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Licence to Kill
(1989)
Album Cover Art
American Cover
European Cover
Album 2 Cover Art
Composed, Conducted, and Produced by:

Performed by:
The National Philharmonic Orchestra
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LABEL & RELEASE DATE
MCA Records
(June 19th, 1989)
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ALBUM AVAILABILITY
Regular U.S. release.
Awards
AWARDS
None.
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   Availability | Viewer Ratings | Comments | Audio & Track Listings | Notes
Buy it... if you want a cheap souvenir from the film and are focused on the unmemorable opening and closing songs.

Avoid it... if you seek a remotely satisfying presentation of Michael Kamen's basically sufficient but flawed score on an album that butchers it to pieces with poorly executed edits and arrangement.
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EDITORIAL REVIEW
FILMTRACKS TRAFFIC RANK: #1,577
WRITTEN 6/16/10
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Kamen
Kamen
Licence to Kill: (Michael Kamen) Tough times fell upon the James Bond franchise at the end of the 1980's. Its 16th entry, Licence to Kill, was a fiscal disappointment and years of legal wrangling over the rights to the character caused a delay in the production of the subsequent feature, Goldeneye. The first Bond film to earn a PG-13 rating in America was indeed Licence to Kill, with greater violence and a refusal to adhere to the formula of the series by cutting back on the charming elements usually inherent in these movies. In the plot, Bond angrily leaves the secret service to avenge a Latin American drug lord's attack on his CIA contact and friend, Felix Leiter. The story is decidedly low tech and personal, befitting well Timothy Dalton's more serious interpretation of the character. Just as Dalton was beginning to repair the damage that Roger Moore had done to Ian Fleming's famed spy (a circumstance leading to generally positive initial reviews of the film), the legal dispute that delayed the series' continuation ushered in the massively successful Pierce Brosnan era, further relegating Licence to Kill to obscurity. Production nightmares involving the film were many, extending all the way up to the title of the film; a last minute change from Licence Revoked caused a disastrous promotional campaign. Equally problematic was the soundtrack situation with Licence to Kill, which is about as dissatisfying as any in James Bond history. Originally, John Barry was to return once again to build upon his legacy with a follow-up to his highly regarded The Living Daylights. Additionally Eric Clapton was to collaborate with original series guitar favorite Vic Flick to provide a new interpretation on Monty Norman's classic theme for the title song. Throat surgery, however, did not allow Barry to fit the film into his schedule, and a last minute removal of Clapton yielded a title song performed by Gladys Knight that suffered from attribution problems. The score was subsequently handed to Michael Kamen late in production, too. Kamen had proven himself in Hollywood with his music for Lethal Weapon and Die Hard, among others, and he had collaborated with pop artists before in producing mainstream songs. Still, he was at a significant disadvantage in terms of time and coordination, and his resulting work, while basically sufficient, is usually forgotten in the larger scene of James Bond music.

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VIEWER RATINGS
120 TOTAL VOTES
Average: 2.85 Stars
***** 18 5 Stars
**** 22 4 Stars
*** 30 3 Stars
** 24 2 Stars
* 26 1 Stars
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COMMENTS
1 TOTAL COMMENTS
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2 tracks are switched
Mark Malmstrøm - August 15, 2010, at 3:15 p.m.
1 comment  (734 views)
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Track Listings Icon
TRACK LISTINGS AND AUDIO
Audio Samples   ▼
Total Time: 45:32
• 1. Licence to Kill - performed by Gladys Knight (5:13)
• 2. Wedding Party - performed by Ivory (3:53)
• 3. Dirty Love - performed by Tim Freehan (3:45)
• 4. Pam (3:50)
• 5. If You Asked Me To - performed by Patti LaBelle (3:58)
• 6. James & Felix on Their Way to Church (3:53)
• 7. His Funny Valentine (3:26)
• 8. Sanchez in the Bahamas/Shark Fishing (2:06)
• 9. Ninja (6:03)
• 10. Licence Revoked (9:11)

Notes Icon
NOTES AND QUOTES
The insert includes no extra information about the score or film. The American and European pressings contain different cover art.
Copyright © 2010-2015, 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 Licence to Kill are Copyright © 1989, MCA Records and cannot be redistributed without the label's expressed written consent. Page created 6/16/10 (and not updated significantly since).
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