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Section Header
The Peacemaker
1997 Dreamworks

2000 Bootleg

2014 La-La Land

Composed, Arranged, and Co-Produced by:
Hans Zimmer

Additional Music and Co-Conducted by:
Gavin Greenaway

Orchestrated by:
Bruce L. Fowler
Ladd McIntosh
Y.S. Moriarty

Co-Conducted by:
Harry Gregson-Williams

Co-Produced by:
Adam Smalley

Vocals by:
Mamak Khadem

Labels and Dates:
Dreamworks Records
(September 9th, 1997)


La-La Land Records
(May 20th, 2014)

Also See:
Crimson Tide
Beyond Rangoon
The Rock
Muppet Treasure Island

Audio Clips:
1997 Album:

1. Trains (0:30):
WMA (193K)  MP3 (238K)
Real Audio (147K)

3. Sarajevo (0:30):
WMA (195K)  MP3 (243K)
Real Audio (151K)

4. Chase (0:30):
WMA (197K)  MP3 (243K)
Real Audio (151K)

5. Peacemaker (0:30):
WMA (197K)  MP3 (243K)
Real Audio (151K)

The 1997 Dreamworks album is a regular U.S. release. The bootlegs of the recording sessions began circulating around the secondary soundtrack market in 2000. The expanded 2014 La-La Land Records set is limited to 3,000 copies and available primarily through soundtrack specialty outlets for an initial price of $25.


The Peacemaker
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Buy it... on any of its album presentations if you appreciate the extremely masculine and often brutal synthetic and organic blend that defines Hans Zimmer's action sound of the era.

Avoid it... on the commercial album if you seek a coherent presentation of the score, for the definitive 2014 set paints a far more balanced and impressive picture of Zimmer's composition by offering both the film's original cues and the composer's preferred arranged suites.

The Peacemaker: (Hans Zimmer) While The Peacemaker didn't involve producer Jerry Bruckheimer or directors Michael Bay or Tony Scott, most regular moviegoers could easily have been fooled. Directed actually by "E.R"'s Mimi Leder and receiving input from Steven Spielberg, who had, in part, chosen this project as the debut of his new Dreamworks studio, the 1997 film follows many of the same formula techniques that Bruckheimer productions had introduced very popularly to the world but with a slightly deeper dramatic reach. A story of international diplomatic intrigue is wrapped around an old-fashioned American pursuit of a stolen Russian nuclear weapon. A distraught Bosnian diplomat to the United Nations, in grief over the loss of his family in the warfare of Sarajevo, seeks to smuggle the weapon into New York and exact his revenge. The acting of George Clooney and Nicole Kidman elevated the film's mainstream appeal outside of military buffs in much the same way that Crimson Tide had accomplished two years earlier. Leder's direction offered a somewhat more stylish and poignant take on what the Bruckheimers, Bays, and Scotts of the industry could muster, a few densely spectacular scenes floating the picture above the usual testosterone-fest. One of the most obvious direct connections between the Crimson Tide and The Peacemaker was the music by composer Hans Zimmer, who was in the process of revolutionizing the sound of the bombastic blockbuster score and influencing his numerous assistants in the same direction. For Zimmer, The Peacemaker was an opportunity to forget the contentious circumstances over the production of music in both Crimson Tide and The Rock. In Crimson Tide, Zimmer had to battle with Bruckheimer over the use of the choir, and in The Rock, Zimmer was forced into an uncomfortable position of serving as a ghostwriter for Nick Glennie-Smith when Bruckheimer refused some of Glennie-Smith's music. Interestingly, however, Spielberg was an enormous fan of the score for Crimson Tide (which is always amusing to consider given how vastly different its tone is from the usual John Williams score), and he specifically encouraged Zimmer to carry over one of the swinging rhythm action figures from that score into The Peacemaker.

Zimmer was much more insistent that he was confident in his approach for The Peacemaker, and Leder and Spielberg extended him far greater courtesy in allowing him space to write what he felt was correct for the film, starting with his usual "concept suite" of ideas. The resulting score is a culmination of ideas that were arguably more satisfying for Zimmer than his previous work in the genre. "In Peacemaker, I managed to finish off all the ideas that I didn't quite get right in Crimson Tide. How many sunflowers scenes did Van Gogh paint before he was happy?" Zimmer stated just after the score's completion. "Sometimes it's nice to go over old ground just because you learn something. In film scoring, there's revolution and there's evolution." He was likely doing both at once, though Zimmer would joke about how the sound he created for Crimson Tide and perpetuated in The Peacemaker caught on so furiously with other composers. His music for The Peacemaker definitely draws connections to the earlier, superior score, but it also stands on its own with no less than eight distinct themes and its own strikingly powerful and often dissonant style. The ensemble would be different for this score as well. Most of the sound effects and choral employment in Crimson Tide carry over directly to The Peacemaker, but Zimmer's electronics and the choir would be aided by over 100 orchestral players this time around. With the composer's usual technique of merging the synthetic and organic, though, the live players exist at an inherent disadvantage. In fact, some casual listeners will likely interpret most of the score as entirely synthetic, a trait of recording and mixing habits that would prove bothersome to some Zimmer fans for years to come. Even when a score like The Peacemaker makes use of the full ensemble, the arrangement of that recording with synthetic percussion, among other samples and backing of bass elements, causes the entire mix to take on a harsh, electronic edge with a heavy emphasis on the bass region. This soon-to-be trademark Zimmer sound represents both the best and worst of the composer's divisive appeal, depending on your taste for ultra-masculine film music. In retrospect, it's refreshing to hear that Zimmer had not yet dropped the woodwinds and other treble elements, ferocious flute lines accenting the train hijack sequence and violins often wildly hyperactive in their upper ranges during several cues as well.

To say that The Peacemaker features eight themes is a bit misleading, because only three of them receive significant and/or meaningful airtime and only four can be traced back to unique characters of other elements in the film. The most memorably obvious thematic element exists for the tragedy of Sarajevo and the diplomat's sorrow, and it is this theme that Zimmer identifies as his only lingering personal favorite from the score. In reference to this tragic element, Zimmer stated, "I liked one theme... Because it was inspired. We all have craft, we all have technique. But the moments of inspiration, that's where it really happens for composers." The ethnicity of the instrumentation and the voice of Mamek Khadem in these portions serve as a fascinating bridge between Beyond Rangoon and Gladiator in Zimmer's career, and the general tone and classically-inclined progressions of the theme merge well with the performances of Frederic Chopin music that the diplomat's character performs on piano in the film. Together, this combination of melancholy music from Zimmer and Chopin would provide audiences with their most vivid musical memories of The Peacemaker. Demand for both "Nocturne Opus 55 No. 1 in F Minor" (which the young girl performs in the story) and "Nocturne No. 20 in C Sharp Minor" (which the diplomat/teacher performs in memory of his slain family) experienced a popular increase due to their obvious and beautiful use in the widely viewed film. The more powerful of the two sequences offers Nick Glennie-Smith's performances on piano, eventually overtaken by the orchestral ensemble with remarkable class. In context, the Sarajevo theme by Zimmer and the use of Chopin are at complete odds with the remainder of the score, and these sequences beckon you to your editing software to create a suite of seven or eight minutes of this material alone. The remainder of The Peacemaker, by comparison, is all brute force and little elegance, and this contrast is the simple reason why the lovely music described above is the downright highlight in the film and on album. Of the remaining three themes, the two representing the nuclear weapons and the corrupt Russian general stealing them for a profit intertwine on several occasions. While you can clearly delineate the robust Russian march for General Kodoroff, the theme for the bombs is far more sinister and obtuse. That idea is a suspense motif that reinvents itself throughout the score but receives its clearest performances in the lowest registers of the first three minutes of the film's early train-loading sequence.

The march for the Russian general is a stoic, metal-clanging series of short bursts for brass that accompanies the train as it departs and figures into a few later scenes. Zimmer recorded a two-minute suite-like rendition of this theme (not available on the commercial album) that also explores the bombs' theme. A later adaptation of the theme places it in the instrumentation of the Sarajevo material, a natural transition point in the story and a highlight of the score. The final major theme in The Peacemaker is actually the primary idea for the film, ironically, and it is most commonly associated with Clooney's agent character and the heroic actions of the American military. You first hear this somewhat swashbuckling theme dramatically and at a very slow pace in the scene when the agent boards one of three helicopters to pursue the stolen bombs, and the momentum of the theme is heightened considerably throughout the following chase sequence in which one of the choppers is shot down by a Russian missile. After the Americans recover all but one of the bombs, the scene ends with a prototypical, muscularly harmonic announcement of the theme in heroic fashion. The film's finale offers a softer, mournful variation on this theme before the opening of the end credits lets rip with it at full force. This end title sequence was re-arranged and placed at the end of the "Chase" cue on the commercial album. It is in the rhythmic introduction to this theme that Zimmer pulls the exact same introductory phrase from the start of his main theme for Crimson Tide, with equally satisfying results. The downside of The Peacemaker is that the majority of its action sequences feature stock Media Ventures-era material that fails to impress. In fact, much of it is so obnoxious in its pounding clumsiness that the score requires significant personal editing to collect the compelling portions into a lengthy suite. Some of this issue relates to the abrasive nature of Zimmer's dissonant, staccato ensemble hits during so much of the action. Among the more irritating cues is "Devoe's Revenge," a spectacular scene in the film that unfortunately contains an inarticulate mess of rhythmic bombast contributed by conductor Gavin Greenaway. The commercial album for The Peacemaker does its best to emphasize both sides of the score, but Jeff Rona's arrangement (which he considered among his best) still fails in that it forces the music into the suite-emphasized mold that Zimmer prefers to write for and hear himself. His disdain for short cues unfortunately translates into an album that, like Crimson Tide, diminishes the work's highlights by hiding them in 10+ minute suites dominated by the ear-splitting bombast.

1997 Album:
Only $5.99
It's nearly impossible to reference the action in The Peacemaker by using the original 1997 commercial album from Dreamworks, and luckily for genre junkies, an inevitable 2-CD bootleg of recording sessions floated around the Internet so long that MP3's of it were to be found practically everywhere. The bootleg, which runs over 100 minutes with the commercial album's "Peacemaker" suite thrown in for good measure (that music never appeared in the film intact given that it was the early concept suite), illuminates the themes with far better presentations. This includes the Russian general's theme in "Kodoroff" and "The Frontier," the bomb's theme in "The Real World," the heroic title theme for the Americans in "I Must Go" and "Peacemaker," and portions of the Sarajevo theme spread throughout. The film version of one of the Chopin pieces (in "Piano Sereno") is included as well. For Zimmer fanatics, the bootleg was absolutely required listening. Thankfully, the score finally received what Zimmer dreads to see: a vastly expanded edition featuring the mass of music recorded for the film. The limited 2-CD set from La-La Land Records in 2014 is a nice combination of the two albums, taking the same very short cues featured on the bootleg and combining them three or four to a track, yielding accessibly arranged cues that contrast to Rona's longer suites and the bootleg's short bursts. Listeners accustomed to the bootleg may not hear much difference in sound quality (the early portions of the score are still far too bass heavy for their own good, even on the La-La Land mix), and the contents are largely the same. For those still relying upon the Dreamworks album's suites decades later, you will be rewarded by the expanded presentations' better representation of not only the themes but the instrumental diversity that struggles to shine in The Peacemaker but at least it exists amongst all the ruckus. On the other hand, the actual score for the film doesn't emphasize the Khadem performances as much as the original album did (the film only allows them to really shine twice), perhaps enticing Zimmer collectors to turn to Ofra Haza's similar vocals in The Prince of Egypt the following year to scratch that itch further. Some of the Sarajevo theme's tragic melody carries over to that excellent score as well. A Lisbeth Scott alternate bonus track on the 2014 set is curious but badly synchronized. Despite the often dissonant and obnoxious action pounding in The Peacemaker, its intelligent nuances make it a continued recommendation. This score is all over the map in terms of quality, but it remains a highlight of pure Media Venture action era, and collectors will be well served by the 2014 set, the perfect tool of comparison for both the film and album arrangements of the music. Price Hunt: CD or Download

    Music as Written for the Film: ****
    Music as Heard on the 1997 Dreamworks Album: ***
    Music as Heard on the Bootlegs and 2014 La-La Land Set: ****
    Overall: ****

Bias Check:For Hans Zimmer reviews at Filmtracks, the average editorial rating is 2.98 (in 89 reviews)
and the average viewer rating is 3 (in 266,330 votes). The maximum rating is 5 stars.

 Viewer Ratings and Comments:  

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   Alternative review at Movie Wave
  Southall -- 8/10/14 (1:38 p.m.)
   2014 album complaints
  Dawson A -- 8/9/14 (6:53 p.m.)
  Levente -- 3/1/09 (3:26 a.m.)
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 Track Listings (1997 Dreamworks Album): Total Time: 54:43

• 1. Trains (13:53)
• 2. Devoe's Revenge (5:15)
• 3. Sarajevo (8:42)
• 4. Chase (17:07)
• 5. Peacemaker (9:44)

 Track Listings (2000 Bootleg): Total Time: 103:22

CD1: (66:14)
• 1. Bosnia (0:46)
• 2. Train (6:01)
• 3. Chase - Film Version (7:43)
• 4. Nuclear Foult (1:38)
• 5. Kodoroff (1:49)
• 6. Is Alive (0:36)
• 7. Evidence (0:40)
• 8. Password (2:34)
• 9. Outside Line (2:04)
• 10. The Real World (0:58)
• 11. Sarajevo (0:54)
• 12. Piano Teacher (0:55)
• 13. The Frontier (0:52)
• 14. Impass (0:21)
• 15. I Need More Time (3:24)
• 16. Davoe's Revenge (5:49)
• 17. I Never... (2:24)
• 18. Your Need People Need You (1:00)
• 19. I'm Not a Monster (2:43)
• 20. Piano Sereno (1:13)
• 21. I Must Go (2:37)
• 22. Russia's Dangerous (0:45)
• 23. Peacemaker (11:27)
• 24. Encounter (1:58)
• 25. Family (1:29)
• 26. Inflection Point (3:34)
CD2: (37:08)
• 1. La Guardia (1:42)
• 2. Searching (1:10)
• 3. Where? (4:58)
• 4. The Target Missing (1:21)
• 5. You Can't Stop This (9:41)
• 6. Prelude (1:38)
• 7. 00:00:59 (3:25)
• 8. You Okay...? (1:19)
• 9. Finale/End Title (2:07)
• 10. Chase (9:47)

 Track Listings (2014 La-La Land Set): Total Time: 152:01

CD 1: (74:08)
• 1. Voice of God/Vassily's Dilemma (6:49)
• 2. Hijack (7:46)
• 3. It Wasn't an Accident/Exporting Good Will/Smoke Screen (3:55)
• 4. Bombs on the Move/Alexsander Kodoroff/Kodoroff's Alive (5:11)
• 5. Good Guys/Bad Guys/Dusan's Village (1:51)
• 6. Keep On Truckin'/Head of Transportation/Hasselhoff/Escape (4:38)
• 7. Car Chase - composed by Gavin Greenaway (5:51)
• 8. Forty-Four E/Dusan's Confession (3:24)
• 9. Truck Convoy/License Plate (2:46)
• 10. Nocturne in C# Minor - composed by Frederic Chopin (1:15)
• 11. Get Me Authorized - performed by Mamak Khadem (2:38)
• 12. Checkpoint/Helicopter Chase (12:11)
• 13. One Unaccounted For/Dusan Gets Bomb/Dusan's Speech (5:06)
• 14. He's Going to New York/F.B.I. N.Y./Swiss Flight #1204 (4:37)
• 15. Dusan's Flashback - performed by Mamak Khadem (6:18)

CD 2: (77:53)
• 1. Dusan With Bomb/Dusan in Church (11:18)
• 2. Dusan Kills Himself (3:28)
• 3. Dr. Kelly is O.K./Dr. Kelly Got 10 More (3:28)

Bonus Tracks: (59:40)
• 4. Trains (Original Album Version) (13:54)
• 5. Devoe's Revenge (Original Album Version) (5:16)
• 6. Sarajevo (Original Album Version) (8:43)
• 7. Chase (Original Album Version) (17:06)
• 8. Peacemaker (Original Album Version) (9:45)
• 9. Get Me Authorized (Alternate Vocals) - performed by Lisbeth Scott (2:42)
• 10. The Peacemaker Trailer Music - composed by Harry Gregson-Williams (2:18)

 Notes and Quotes:  

The Dreamworks album's insert includes a list of musicians, but no extra information about the score of film. That of the 2014 La-La Land set contains extensive notation about both. The bootlegs feature many different variations in artwork.

  All artwork and sound clips from The Peacemaker are Copyright © 1997, 2000, 2014, Dreamworks Records, Bootleg, La-La Land Records. The reviews and other textual content contained on the site may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without the prior written authority of Filmtracks Publications. Audio clips can be heard using RealPlayer but cannot be redistributed without the label's expressed written consent. Page created 9/11/97 and last updated 8/9/14. Review Version 5.1 (PHP). Copyright © 1997-2015, Christian Clemmensen (Filmtracks Publications). All rights reserved.