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Sleeping with the Enemy
1991 Sony/Columbia

2011 La-La Land

Composed, Conducted, and Produced by:
Jerry Goldsmith

Orchestrated by:
Alexander Courage

Labels and Dates:
Sony Music Entertainment/Columbia
(February 12th, 1991)

La-La Land Records
(September 13th, 2011)

Also See:
Love Field
Basic Instinct
Not Without My Daughter
Star Trek: Insurrection

Audio Clips:
1991 Album:

1. Morning on the Beach (0:30):
WMA (202K)  MP3 (254K)
Real Audio (179K)

2. The Funeral (0:32):
WMA (213K)  MP3 (269K)
Real Audio (189K)

6. The Ring (0:27):
WMA (179K)  MP3 (224K)
Real Audio (158K)

7. A Brave Girl (0:30):
WMA (193K)  MP3 (239K)
Real Audio (168K)

The 1991 Sony/Columbia album was a regular U.S. release. The 2011 La-La Land album is limited to 3,500 copies and was made available through soundtrack specialty outlets at an initial price of $20.


Sleeping with the Enemy

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Sales Rank: 153498

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Buy it... if you have a soft spot for Jerry Goldsmith's airy, delicate themes of innocence performed by solo woodwinds over lofty strings and tingling electronics, regardless of the genre in which they flourish.

Avoid it... if you prefer your thriller scores to actually thrill you, for the synthetic suspense material in this one is completely generic and unmemorable compared to the delightful beauty of the many lightly melodic portions.

Sleeping with the Enemy: (Jerry Goldsmith) Movies about sexual obsession and formulaic stalkers have rarely started as well as Sleeping with the Enemy does in its opening scenes. In her first major role after Pretty Woman, a timid Julia Roberts is emotionally and physically brutalized by her financier husband. He flaunts her beauty at parties while abusing her as a servant at home, and the early beachfront scenes in the film are filled with the promise of a dramatic and thoughtful plot. But after the wife flees several states away, tries to change her identity, and is confronted by the terror of her husband coming after her, the film unfortunately morphs into one of those cheap thrillers that hopes you actually believe the villain is dead when he's got one last stab to go. Despite directing a few cult favorites in previous years, Joseph Ruben missed the mark with Sleeping with the Enemy, providing a stereotypical plot reminiscent of Fatal Attraction and filled to the brim with outrageous fallacies of logic. After being shunned by critics, the movie still made impressive returns due to its star power. One element of the film that was arguably somewhat awkward in the finished product was Jerry Goldsmith's mostly upbeat score. The legendary composer had transformed his horror scores from the grand scope of the Poltergeist and The Omen franchises into electronically assisted, less obvious variations for the smaller, more seedy horror projects he would accept in the early 1990's. Surprisingly, despite the film fitting this mould quite well, Sleeping with the Enemy has little to do with the prevailing attitudes of scores like Malice and Basic Instinct that were composed at roughly the same time. The narrative of the 1991 movie required its fair share of suspenseful moments and thud-inducing horror twists, but it is, at its core, a melodic work that seems to indicate that Goldsmith was feeding off of the beauty and hopefulness of Roberts' character rather than the literally dark shades of Patrick Bergin's anger as his character conducts his creepy pursuit.

As a result of the constant pull of the innocence of Roberts' character on Goldsmith's attention, Sleeping with the Enemy is a score with conflicting personalities. The dominant theme that Goldsmith provides for the wife is as consistently charming as any the composer had ever written. That is, for a drama or a children's film. And he doesn't try to fool you with its personality. The lofty woodwind solos over tingling electronics and high strings (and other lightly pulsating woodwinds) are just as gorgeous and soothing in the opening scenes as they are in "A Brave Girl" and at the finale of the picture. The theme and its instrumentation are absolutely trademark 1990's Goldsmith in style, and the simplicity of the melody, along with its repetitive use, will cause it to remain in your head long after the score is over. Some listeners are likely to associate its instrumental tone with the love theme from Star Trek: Insurrection. Goldsmith sometimes allows a slight variant of this woodwind theme to be carried solely by string layers, as in the middle portions of "The Funeral," and the dramatic progression of these performances will remind you of John Barry's shamelessly consistent dramatic techniques of the early 1980's (with similarities to High Road to China, coincidentally). The same cue also begins with a token nod to Bernard Herrmann's classic Cape Fear score, one of the greatest stalking/thriller entries ever in its effectiveness, including meandering, rising string lines, the tolling of chimes, and eerie pulsations from muted brass (seemingly French horns pushed to their highest ranges rather than the more conventional trumpets). The chimes in particular are an interesting device of cohesion in the score, mixed prominently and heard frequently at the forefront of the mix in the suspense sequences as perhaps a spooky reminder of broken marriage vows. Unlike Goldsmith's straight horror scores, in which the drums and brass often punctuate horror jabs with rowdy hits, the moments of horror in this circumstance are treated to abrasively groaning electronic clanging instead, with "The Carnival" and "Remember This" relying on uncomfortable textures from Goldsmith's synthetic library that he would rarely utilize in his other scores.

1991 Album:
Only $9.99
The challenging cues in Sleeping with the Enemy by no means represent Goldsmith's better half of suspense or horror scoring; in fact, you'll likely forget the ten minutes of suspense writing in the latter portions of the score, cues like "Home Alone" offering nothing of interest for the listener. The only exception may be "The Ring," which does stoke a fair amount of panic in its rhythmic figures, dissonant layers, and harsh tones. The final cue returns to the deliberate beauty of the opening sequence, but with an even faster and thicker bed of electronics. One aspect of the theme that deserves special mentioning is the composer's ability to write subtle differences into its statements to solicit important changes in performance emphasis from the ensemble. In cues like "Spring Cleaning" and "The Disguise," you can hear the theme literally become tired, a technique of pacing and instrumentation that shouldn't go lost in the score's overall flow. On the other hand, the husband's music is smartly static, synthetic, and uniform, "Thanks Mom" and "The Towels" conveying the various thumping sound effects for his character that really don't develop beyond their necessary, primordial duties. On both the 1991 Sony and 2011 La-La Land albums representing the score, you'll be able to pull at least fifteen minutes of great main theme performances for your carefree enjoyment. You'll have to put that material on a compilation completely exempt from the horror genre, however, due to its counterintuitive insistence upon unfettered beauty. For those long familiar with the 1991 album, the expanded 2011 product subtracts the Van Morrison song but includes a decent rounding out of the narrative in its newly released material, some of it (like the horn counterpoint to the theme in "No Problem") pleasantly surprising. While the sound quality has always been crystal clear with this score, the La-La Land product seems to exacerbate a tinny aspect to the mix of the electronics and piano in a few cues ("A Brave Girl" for the former, "Remember This" for the latter), yielding an occasionally treble-heavy sound. Overall, Sleeping with the Enemy will defy the expectations of those approaching it blindly. It's a mixed bag in the film due to its understated and synthetic handling of the suspense portions, but the considerable airtime for the primary theme makes either album a safe investment for Goldsmith collectors. **** Price Hunt: CD or Download

Bias Check:For Jerry Goldsmith reviews at Filmtracks, the average editorial rating is 3.26 (in 113 reviews)
and the average viewer rating is 3.26 (in 138,505 votes). The maximum rating is 5 stars.

 Viewer Ratings and Comments:  

Regular Average: 3.58 Stars
Smart Average: 3.41 Stars*
***** 304 
**** 302 
*** 249 
** 137 
* 73 
  (View results for all titles)
    * Smart Average only includes
         40% of 5-star and 1-star votes
              to counterbalance fringe voting.
   An excellent score!
  Mathias Sender -- 6/23/06 (5:37 a.m.)
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 Track Listings (1991 Sony/Columbia Album): Total Time: 41:30

• 1. Morning on the Beach (2:33)
• 2. The Funeral (3:24)
• 3. Brown Eyed Girl* (3:06)
• 4. Thanks Mom (4:26)
• 5. Spring Cleaning (2:30)
• 6. The Ring (2:09)
• 7. A Brave Girl (3:50)
• 8. Fears (2:56)
• 9. What Did He Do (2:28)
• 10. The Storm (3:13)
• 11. The Carnival (2:54)
• 12. Remember This (7:57)

* original recording performed by Van Morrison

 Track Listings (2011 La-La Land Album): Total Time: 55:33

• 1. Morning on the Beach (2:32)
• 2. No Problem* (0:52)
• 3. Fears (2:55)
• 4. Roses/You Want Something/Happy Days* (2:29)
• 5. The Storm (3:16)
• 6. Broken Window* (1:02)
• 7. The Funeral (3:22)
• 8. A Brave Girl (3:48)
• 9. Spring Cleaning (2:28)
• 10. Broken Light* (1:05)
• 11. The Ring (2:04)
• 12. Sarah Waters* (1:01)
• 13. It Never Started* (1:21)
• 14. Home Alone* (0:51)
• 15. What Did He Do? (2:55)
• 16. The Disguise* (0:47)
• 17. Thanks Mom (4:25)
• 18. Don't Worry/Wrong Man/School's Out* (1:25)
• 19. The Towels* (1:10)
• 20. The Watcher/He Was Here* (2:01)
• 21. The Carnival (2:51)
• 22. Remember This (7:58)

Bonus Tracks:
• 23. You Want Something (Alternate Mix)* (1:07)
• 24. The Carnival (Alternate Mix) (1:59)

* previously unreleased

 Notes and Quotes:  

The insert of the 1991 Sony/Columbia album includes no extra information about the score or film. The 2011 La-La Land album's insert includes an extensive analysis of both the score and film.

  All artwork and sound clips from Sleeping with the Enemy are Copyright © 1991, 2011, Sony Music Entertainment/Columbia, 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 6/1/98 and last updated 9/26/11. Review Version 5.1 (PHP). Copyright © 1998-2015, Christian Clemmensen (Filmtracks Publications). All rights reserved.