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Water for Elephants
(2011)
Album Cover Art
Composed and Co-Produced by:

Co-Orchestrated and Conducted by:
Pete Anthony

Co-Orchestrated by:
Conrad Pope
Jeff Atmajian
John Kull

Co-Produced by:
Jim Weidman
Labels Icon
LABEL & RELEASE DATE
Sony Classical
(April 19th, 2011)
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ALBUM AVAILABILITY
Regular U.S. release.
Awards
AWARDS
None.
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ALSO SEE




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   Availability | Viewer Ratings | Comments | Audio & Track Listings | Notes
Buy it... if you wonder where the vintage dramatic styles of James Horner and Thomas Newman went, for James Newton Howard has managed to find them and restate their beauty for the benefit of nostalgia.

Avoid it... if you expect a well-rounded and passionate dramatic romance score, because Howard seems a bit too comfortable understating his nebulous ideas throughout this safely pleasant but not really engaging music.
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EDITORIAL REVIEW
FILMTRACKS TRAFFIC RANK: #1,544
WRITTEN 6/8/11
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Howard
Howard
Water for Elephants: (James Newton Howard) Films with the old-fashioned dramatic narrative of 2011's Water for Elephants have become a rarity in Hollywood over the past twenty years. The adaptation of Sara Gruen's bestselling novel was a moderate fiscal success despite protests stemming from accusations that the leading elephant in the production was shown beaten by its handlers in hidden camera footage shot prior to the film's shooting. The elephant is key to a plot that involves a young man who runs off with a traveling circus in 1931 and becomes the group's veterinarian. He embroils himself in the tough relationships between the blow-hard that leads the circus, his stunt-performing wife, and a variety of other performers and henchmen that comprise the group. The ruthless hand of the leader is a convenient foil for the budding romance between his wife and the young newcomer. The elephant plays a pivotal role in assuring the protagonists' bid for freedom and a life with the famed Ringling circus. Mixed reviews resulted mainly because of very poor chemistry between lead actors Reese Witherspoon and Robert Pattinson. Playing the film from a relatively safe angle is composer James Newton Howard, with whom director Francis Lawrence had collaborated for I Am Legend. Howard's attachment to Water for Elephants is a welcome change for a composer who has largely avoided straight forward dramatic music in recent times, despite his proven ability in the genre. His score would share screen time with a number of period-appropriate songs, and these mostly jazzy pieces of the puzzle are provided a very wet mix and intermingled directly with the score cues on the album. For the amount of dramatic character activities in Water for Elephants, Howard's relatively conservative approach to the score is both intriguing and disappointing. It's the kind of music that predictably touches upon a number of possible temp-track inspirations, almost constantly reminding you of works by other respected composers in the genre. The resulting score is certainly adequate and, at times, exceptional, but it gives you the somewhat unnerving feeling that you're hearing an arrangement of ideas rather than an original composition.



Ratings Icon
VIEWER RATINGS
254 TOTAL VOTES
Average: 3.2 Stars
***** 50 5 Stars
**** 61 4 Stars
*** 64 3 Stars
** 48 2 Stars
* 31 1 Stars
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COMMENTS
1 TOTAL COMMENTS
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I could not agree more with this review *NM*
Thomas Allen - June 18, 2011, at 6:36 p.m.
1 comment  (787 views)
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Track Listings Icon
TRACK LISTINGS AND AUDIO
Audio Samples   ▼
Total Time: 60:15
• 1. Did I Miss It? (1:49)
• 2. The Circus Sets Up (2:32)
• 3. Circus Fantasy (3:44)
• 4. Jacob Sees Marlena (5:00)
• 5. Button Up Your Overcoat (Excerpt) - performed by Ruth Etting (0:32)
• 6. Prosze, Rosie, Daj Noge (4:12)
• 7. Rosie (3:24)
• 8. Speakeasy Kiss (1:33)
• 9. I'm Confessin' (That I Love You) - written by Doc Daugherty and Ellis Reynolds (1:40)
• 10. Barbara's Tent (1:18)
• 11. Jacob Returns (5:30)
• 12. Don't Tell Him What Happened to Me - written by Lew Brown, BG De Silva, and Ray Henderson (2:02)
• 13. Shooting Star (2:25)
• 14. The Job is Yours (0:57)
• 15. I Need a Little Sugar in My Bowl - performed by Bessie Smith (2:49)
• 16. Stomp Time Blues - performed by Jasper Taylor & His State Street Boys and Johnny Dodds (2:34)
• 17. I Can See Straight Through You (6:00)
• 18. Sanctuary (1:55)
• 19. Baptism/Jacob & Rosie (1:58)
• 20. The Stampede/I'm Coming Home (8:21)

Notes Icon
NOTES AND QUOTES
The insert includes no extra information about the score or film.
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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 Water for Elephants are Copyright © 2011, Sony Classical and cannot be redistributed without the label's expressed written consent. Page created 6/8/11 (and not updated significantly since).
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