They say good things come in small doses. At just over twenty
minutes duration this is certainly true about the small dose and the
music is not at all bad either. The press release that accompanied
this very off-beat but refreshing and welcome recording, states that
"The film weaves five contemporary stories together into a single
tale that examines the dramatic impact people have on one another…the
film crisscrosses in time and and doubles back on itself….[it] offers
an unusual glimpse into each character's past, present and future
in ways that are playful and poignant. The ideas it explores – the
meaning of true happiness, the notion of Karma, the eternal power
of hope –strike with particular relevance in our increasingly frenetic,
disjointed world.". The film stars Matthew McConaughey; John
Turturo; Amy Irving and Alan Arkin. Alex Wurman is an arranger and
composer with both classical training and a background of jazz and
electronic music He has worked with Hans Zimmer on such films as A
League of Their Own, The Lion King and, with Trevor Rabin,
Armageddon. He has now launched out on his own.
Wurman's chosen instrumental ensemble of two harps, recorder
or flutes, piano with various percussion instruments, like the glass harmonica,
and some discrete electronics affords some novel harmonies and unusual colourings.
There are ten tracks; all of which captivate the ear. I have lost track of the
number of times I have listened to them already. He ever-so-subtly quotes one
or two well–known themes, or, mostly, fragments of themes - and one has to concentrate
hard to identify them because they are so fleeting. There is a bit of one of
the West Side Story songs and a fragment of Young at Heart, for
instance, and a lot of that five-note figure that John Williams developed for
Close Encounters of the Third Kind. There are blues and waltzes, music
that is playful ('Cleaning House') or brooding ('The Devil Doesn't Have Horns
and a Tail'); and other music that is icy remote detached like 'The Next Phase'.
Influences are wide and varied but notably Gershwin and the French Impressionists.
A most agreeable promotional disc. Producers should take note
of Mr Wurman's talent.