August 2002 Film Music CD Reviews

Film Music Editor: Ian Lace
Music Webmaster Len Mullenger

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  VARÈSE SARABANDE VSD-6357   [57:06]


A combination of synthesised and orchestral music with the emphasis squarely on foreboding and atmosphere.

The 'Opening Titles/Blood Drips' is very low key, bleak and ominous and is really no more than background music and there are many subsequent tracks that fit this mould; 'Fog', 'The Dead Dog' etc. But fortunately there is more to the score than atmospherics and the first major theme to be heard is introduced on 'The Glacier', a melodic, poignant piece that becomes darker and more forbidding as it develops. This motif is also heard to fine effect on 'Kay's Funeral' and in a subtle variation on 'Ellie's Theme' before a more expansive version appears on the 'Closing Titles'. The other central theme of the score is first encountered on 'Call to Hap's Window', a mournful piece that is perhaps too subtle for its own good. But it gets better treatment on a number of other cues like 'Will's Confession', 'Walter's Lake House' and '"Let Me Sleep"'. It has to said though that there is little in the way of action, the closest to it being the slightly energetic 'Kay's Bag', recalled briefly on 'Walter's Apartment' and although these pieces work quite well, a few more up-tempo tracks would have made the score rather more engaging.

A mood piece that has an accumulative effect, but will not be to everyone's taste due to the insistence on droning synths and introspective suspense building. However, the score does possess a darkly insidious quality that I at least found quite appealing and I'm certain it will make a strong impression in the film itself.

Mark Hockley


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