Error processing SSI file
Error processing SSI file

July 2001 Film Music CD Reviews

Film Music Editor: Ian Lace
Music Webmaster Len Mullenger

index page/ monthly listings /July01/



Varèse Sarabande’s Great Film Composers Compilation:
George DELERUE  
  VARÈSE SARABANDE VSD-6223   [153:47]

Georges Delerue

Music from:-


  • Platoon -Theme
  • Rich and Famous - Suite
  • Her Alibi –End Title
  • Beaches - Friendship
  • Exposed - Suite
  • Biloxi Blues - Main Title
  • Steel Magnolias – Suite
  • Interlude – Theme
  • The Escape Artist – Suite
  • The Pick Up Artist – Theme
  • Man, Woman and Child – Theme
  • Memories of Me – Suite
  • Something Wicked This Way Comes – Suite


  • Homage à Françoise Truffaut
  • Shoot the Piano Player
  • Love at 20
  • Jules and Jim
  • The Soft Skin
  • Two English Girls
  • Such a Gorgeous Girl Like Me
  • Vivement Dimanche
  • Day for Night
  • The Woman Next Door
  • The Last Metro
  • Maxi – End Title
  • House on Carroll Street - Theme
  • A Little Sex - Suite
  • Maid to Order – Theme
  • Crimes of the Heart – Suite
  • Man Trouble – End Title
  • A Little Romance – Main Title
  • Rich in Love – Suite
  • Agnes of God – Suite
  • Black Robe - Suite

This is a welcome return, in a double CD helping, of two separate albums recorded in 1989, in London, by Varèse Sarabande with the French composer conducting a fine contract orchestra at Abbey Road Studios. It is a wonderful collection, full of very agreeable and enchanting melodies - for that was Delerue forté, creating beautiful, memorable tunes. A look at the list above confirms the diversity of his talent; but he is mainly remembered for those lush tunes that lifted such romantic dramas as Beaches, Steel Magnolias and Rich and Famous.

An important component of the collection is the 12-minute suite, ‘Homage to François Truffaut’ that contains some of his best music for some notable French films like Jules and Jim and Shoot the Piano Player. Delerue, of course, excelled in creating an authentic French or Parisian atmosphere and he could also present music of a darker hue avoiding the usual clichés – for instance, Exposed has shadier Parisian colourings as well more sophisticated material for the elegant beautiful woman of the story. Another darker, more heavily instrumented score is Delerue’s devilish music intended for Something Wicked This Way Comes (based on the Ray Bradbury fantasy) but in the event it was not used due to dissension amongst the film’s producers. Delerue adroitly catches the twisted evil carnival and fairground atmosphere and the moods of exotic temptations, again side-stepping clichés. One cannot help thinking that such music would undoubtedly have helped to boost what turned out to be a disappointing production. His historic scores were beautifully crafted too, The Black Robe (Georges last score) was an outstanding contribution convincingly mixing the historic with the religious (The story was set in 17th Century Quebec and was about a Jesuit Priest’s attempt to colonise the native tribes.) Agnes of God, another moving score, cloistered and introspective and emotionally revealing, won Delerue an Academy Award nomination in 1985.

Although some of Delerue’s work may be said, with some justification, to have a certain ‘sameness’, it is so charming, that in an age starved of really good tunes/ themes, this is a relatively small sin.

Ian Lace


Return to Index

Reviews from previous months

You can purchase CDs, tickets and musician's accessories and Save around 22% with these retailers:


Error processing SSI file