Ottman seems to thrive on action movie scores with a dark edge. For this
tall tale about a giant crocodile menacing a lake (yes, ironically named
Placid) he has created a monster of a score utilising a huge orchestra with
a massive array of percussion instruments.
Although he does not achieve the stomach-churning terror that John Williams
created with his infamous Jaws motif, Ottman comes close enough with his
powerful and quote varied musical shock effects. He uses considerable resource
and ingenuity. The swirling currents, the watery patterns of light and shade,
and the murky depths of the lake are very vividly evoked together with a
hidden presence of danger that you feel will leap out at you at any second.
Ottman uses deep tuba, fluttering higher brass, numerous swift-stated, staccato,
dotted rhythm chords, twisting, curling, gyrating figures on harp and strings,
clanking metallic and dead wooden block strokes to evoke water disturbed
by the giant beast, its swift, silent passage and its sudden, deadly attacks.
Some relief is given with a brief love theme for strings, piano and harp
but the 40 minutes or so of this disc is largely made of horrific aquatic
figures which begin to pall at length. As vivid as it is, this album will
really only appeal to those who want a memento of the movie. I do not think
it will be visiting my CD tray very often.