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To Gillian on Her 37th Birthday
(1996)
Album Cover Art
Composed, Orchestrated, Conducted, and Produced by:
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LABEL & RELEASE DATE
Epic Soundtrax/Sony Music
(October 1st, 1996)
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ALBUM AVAILABILITY
Regular U.S. release, but the album quickly disappeared from stores due to a limited pressing and was difficult to find in stores during the 2000's.
Awards
AWARDS
None.
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   Availability | Viewer Ratings | Comments | Audio & Track Listings | Notes
Buy it... only if you regularly relax to James Horner's most introverted and contemplative character-centered scores that feature plenty of solo performances of lonely melodies.

Avoid it... if you demand any kind of excitement or interesting instrumental and thematic development in your scores, for this is an auto-pilot effort of little originality.
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EDITORIAL REVIEW
FILMTRACKS TRAFFIC RANK: #804
WRITTEN 9/24/96, REVISED 11/8/11
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Horner
Horner
To Gillian on Her 37th Birthday: (James Horner) Adapted by David E. Kelley from a play and directed by Michael Pressman in 1996, To Gillian on Her 37th Birthday is a prolonged story about one man's grief over the death of his wife. Becoming a recluse on Nantucket Island with his 16-year-old daughter, the man suffers so much in the two years that follow a boating accident that he imagines his wife's ghost in conversations with her along the beach outside their home. Maybe that's what happens when you marry and then lose Michelle Pfeiffer. But the film's unoriginal, drawn out story follows predictable paths of the daughter's coming of age and the nosey sister-in-law/aunt who attempts to first set up the ailing father on a blind date before eventually trying to steal custody of the girl. For a survival story, To Gillian on Her 37th Birthday is an exercise in a familiar sense of boredom, the kind of discomfort you might feel at family gatherings with the in-laws that you try to avoid because the routine is always the same. The film suffered from a slap-down in unenthusiastic reviews and disappeared from theatres not song after its mainly arthouse debut. For composer James Horner, To Gillian on Her 37th Birthday came on the heels of a last minute job for The Spitfire Grill, another arthouse film with similar explorations of coming of age and survival, and arguably one that is just as unsuccessful. On Horner's part, however, the quality of the two scores could not be further apart. While the circumstances surrounding Horner's surprising involvement with The Spitfire Grill, along with its more engrossingly developed personality, gained that score considerable attention in autumn of 1996, the music for To Gillian on Her 37th Birthday has fallen off the radar just as badly as the film itself. Although his soundtrack for the later film is certainly functional, Horner's contribution lacks emotional depth and melodic inspiration while being minimally rendered. This may be a fault directly correlated to the film's demeanor, but then again, you get the impression with To Gillian on Her 37th Birthday that Horner had once more shifted into auto-pilot, going through all the usual motions for a small scale character drama without taxing his abilities at any moment.



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VIEWER RATINGS
215 TOTAL VOTES
Average: 2.78 Stars
***** 30 5 Stars
**** 41 4 Stars
*** 48 3 Stars
** 44 2 Stars
* 52 1 Stars
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Track Listings Icon
TRACK LISTINGS AND AUDIO
Audio Samples   ▼
Total Time: 37:09
• 1. A Far Away Time/Main Title (3:52)
• 2. The Boating Accident (2:14)
• 3. Gillian (3:58)
• 4. The Lighthouse (2:17)
• 5. Fond Hopes... Distant Memories (2:05)
• 6. Rachel's Dream/Gillian's Visit (6:47)
• 7. The Decision to Leave Home (3:11)
• 8. Saying Goodbye/End Title (12:40)

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NOTES AND QUOTES
The insert includes no extra information about the score or film.
Copyright © 1996-2017, 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 To Gillian on Her 37th Birthday are Copyright © 1996, Epic Soundtrax/Sony Music and cannot be redistributed without the label's expressed written consent. Page created 9/24/96 and last updated 11/8/11.
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