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Album Cover Art
1985 Polydor
1997 P.E.G.
Album 2 Cover Art
2013 Intrada
Album 3 Cover Art
Composed, Conducted, and Produced by:

Orchestrated by:
Herbert Spencer
Billy May

"Gravity" Performed and Produced by:
Michael Sembello
Labels Icon
Polydor/Polygram, 827 041-2

P.E.G. Recordings/Polygram, PEG013 CD
(September 10th, 1997)

Intrada Records
(October 28th, 2013)
Availability Icon
The 1985 and 1997 albums were regular U.S. releases, but both fell completely out of print and fetched prices ranging from $75 to $250. The 2013 Intrada album is a limited product of unspecified quantities, originally available through soundtrack specialty outlets for $20.
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Decorative Nonsense
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   Availability | Viewer Ratings | Comments | Audio & Track Listings | Notes
Buy it... if you have always relaxed to James Horner's more lushly fluid dramatic themes but have never ventured back to his first official entry in that genre, one that has remained affably accessible in demeanor through time.

Avoid it... if even Intrada Records' expanded and remastered 2013 album for the score, which finally solves its lingering sound quality issues, is not worth hearing music that was largely regurgitated many times in the subsequent ten years by Horner.
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WRITTEN 10/8/97, REVISED 12/24/13
Cocoon: (James Horner) Despite starting in just his twenties, Ron Howard's reputation as a bankable director of "feel good" movies in the 1980's was aided significantly when he took over the reigns of Cocoon after production difficulties showed Robert Zemeckis the door. A lovable parable about the fountain of youth, Cocoon starred older actors and actresses in roles far more prominent that usual, allowing their discovery of rejuvenation to turn them as giddy as teenagers. This group of retirement home dwellers stumbles upon a ship of aliens collecting the cocoons of their dead comrades from the ancient colony of Atlantis and is given the choice of immortality in return for their assistance and acceptance. The movie was a significant hit in 1985, garnering Academy Award attention and leading to an unsuccessful sequel three years later. Howard's collaboration with composer James Horner began with Cocoon and would lead to several tremendous successes before the director turned to Hans Zimmer as his regular partner in the 2000's. In the mid-1980's, Horner was immersed in a period of his career when fantasy and science fiction were the norm, this outstanding body of work ranging from his two Star Trek scores to Aliens and Brainstorm. Unlike his other mainstream projects at the time, Cocoon was an opportunity to take a swim in the pool of drama, and in the process of exploring a more fluid and graceful thematic identity, he wrote what is commonly considered his first great dramatic theme. In the context of the more developed dramas that Horner was destined to tackle in subsequent years, Cocoon may seem somewhat predictable and conservative, but the score was a discovery in 1985. Horner's set of primary themes for Cocoon established a style that has led to countless successes in following years, so even if you can't appreciate the score on a technical level, there is a sense of affection towards it that remains intact several decades after its recording. For much of its history, the two most distinguishing factors of Cocoon's score were the somewhat sparse recording mix of its ensemble as initially available and the rarity of its extremely early CD release. The flat sound quality continued to detract from the score's appeal for some listeners until an excellent remastering and release by Intrada in 2013, a product that not only revealed the original quality of the recording but finally eliminated the score from remaining lists of soundtrack collectibles.

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Average: 3.76 Stars
***** 310 5 Stars
**** 224 4 Stars
*** 153 3 Stars
** 79 2 Stars
* 66 1 Stars
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Track Listings Icon
Audio Samples   ▼
1985/1997 Polydor Albums Tracks   ▼Total Time: 44:28
• 1. Through the Window (2:54)
• 2. The Lovemaking (4:21)
• 3. The Chase (4:27)
• 4. Rose's Death (2:10)
• 5. The Boys Are Out (2:35)
• 6. Returning to Sea (4:13)
• 7. Gravity - performed by Michael Sembello (4:52)
• 8. Discovered in the Poolhouse (2:45)
• 9. First Tears (1:49)
• 10. Sad Goodbyes (2:22)
• 11. The Ascension (5:55)
• 12. Theme From Cocoon (6:03)
2013 Intrada Album Tracks   ▼Total Time: 62:12

Notes Icon
The 1985 and 1997 albums feature blank inserts. The 1997 album's cover has a purple tint to the film's artwork, whereas the 1985 album featured the original blue tones. The insert of the 2013 Intrada album offers notes about the film, score, and recording. The track "The Ascension" also appears on the "Ron Howard Passions and Achievements" retrospective compilation from 1997.
Copyright © 1997-2020, Filmtracks Publications. All rights reserved.
The reviews and other textual content contained on the 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 Cocoon are Copyright © 1985, 1997, 2013, Polydor/Polygram, 827 041-2, P.E.G. Recordings/Polygram, PEG013 CD, Intrada Records and cannot be redistributed without the label's expressed written consent. Page created 10/8/97 and last updated 12/24/13.
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