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Saving Private Ryan Soundtrack
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Frequently Bought Together
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|1. Hymn To The Fallen|
|2. Revisiting Normandy|
|3. Omaha Beach|
|4. Finding Private Ryan|
|5. Approaching The Enemy|
|6. Defense Preparations|
|7. Wade's Death|
|8. High School Teacher|
|9. The Last Battle|
|10. Hymn To The Fallen (Reprise)|
What appears on screen during the World War II movie Saving Private Ryan suggests that director Steven Spielberg has studied the hyperviolence of Quentin Tarantino, John Woo, and Stanley Kubrick (think Full Metal Jacket). What you hear, however, assures that Spielberg still collects Norman Rockwell paintings. Composed by Spielberg's long-time musical companion, John Williams, Ryan denies the pair's penchant for ebullience in favor of funereal grace. Rather than mirror the visual kinetics, Williams lends the gunfire a tone-poem aura. Oliver Stone's Platoon makes the best comparison; remember how Barber's Adagio for Strings accompanied its most bloody moments? Williams later worked with Stone on JFK and Nixon, providing scores so somber, they qualified as morose. They remain two of his best, and Saving Private Ryan shares their restraint. --Marc Weidenbaum
Top Customer Reviews
The exception that proves the rule, of course, is the opening track, "Hymn to the Fallen," which is the musical highpoint of the album and gets reprised at the end of the album. Between those two tracks this is a somber musical score and it will take you a while to be able to recognize the individual tracks between the two hymns as being distinct pieces of music. Again, this is not to say that this approach is inappropriate, just that the music enhances the images and without the images the music is lacking.Read more ›
Considering that most of Williams' film scores tend to be very bombastic and energetic (his Star Wars and Indiana Jones music tends to follow the Wagner/Korngold tradition of big orchestras and action-oriented cues), it's refreshing to hear this very prolific (and much-imitated) composer use orchestral restraint where he might have been tempted to utilize strident and Sousa-like marches, as is common in most war movies, especially movies about World War II.
But starting with the reverent-yet-mournful "Hymn to the Fallen" (a piece that is not heard till the End Credits, but is nevertheless an apt start to this album), Williams utilizes musical motifs to highlight the different aspects of the Normandy invasion as experienced by Capt. John Miller (Tom Hanks) and the seven GIs who have been assigned to retrieve Pvt. James Ryan (Matt Damon) from the small airhead held by the 101 Airborne Division on the Cotentin Peninsula in the days following the D-Day landings. This beautiful yet haunting piece sets the proper tone for this album, and is reprised at the end. (Careful listeners will note that this arrangement is not used in the film, however. Williams and Spielberg use a longer version of this music that also incorporates the "Omaha Beach Theme.Read more ›
The CD has 10 tracks, and a playing time of 64 minutes, 13 seconds **** and a half stars.
'Hymn To The Fallen' is definitely the highlight of this CD. An elegy created for those who died during the battle in Normandy. It's very touching, and the notes just flow richly, supported by a chorus that flows along with the orchestra. One of Williams' best themes. It's quite difficult for me to hate this score because you get to like every single note from it. Even those cues where suspense in present such as 'Battle Preparations' and 'The Last Battle', which makes you feel you are in the battle field. Another interesting thing about this movie is that Williams didn't -according to Spielberg in the liner notes of this album -want to write music for the opening sequence in order to avoid sentimentality on a gruesome situation, and I totally agree because I felt that the sound effects carried that scene neatly; a scene where you see bullets leaving soldiers in a blood pool.
John Williams has done it again. One great score that touches our hearts and pays respect to those heroes who fought and died during the wars. One score that stands alone. One that is better than the film for which it was written.
Most recent customer reviews
In writing this review, I thought back on an apparently tin-eared movie critic who criticized John Williams' "gung ho" scoring for "Saving Private Ryan. Read morePublished on Jan. 8 2004 by Paul Bubny
I admit it. I read all the extremely positive reviews, and was duped into thinking that this album was somehow set apart from all other movie soundtracks. Read morePublished on Oct. 17 2003
The soundtrack to Saving Private shows John Williams at his best. The "Hymn to the Fallen" and "The Last Battle" are songs that will be remembered forever as the best pieces of... Read morePublished on July 19 2003 by jason*peralta
I loved Saving Private Ryan. But without this music it is nothing. The music captures the setting and the mood of that scene. Without again it is nothing. Read morePublished on Jan. 2 2003 by K. Kainula
Thank you for the Edith Piaf song you inserted into the soundtrack. I have now listened to other recordings by this artist. Read morePublished on Dec 15 2002 by Robert C. Williams
John Williams, in perhaps his most moving score to date, has delighted the hearts of millions with his score, only they hardly noticed it. Read morePublished on Aug. 15 2002 by Thaddeus Marcum
It's great, but John Williams has had so many better scores. Star Wars, Indiana Jones, Schindler's List and of course, JAWS. Read morePublished on Aug. 3 2002 by ChiefSanch
when i heard the musical score from the movie "saving private ryan", i told myself "i have to get a copy of it !". Read morePublished on Nov. 14 2001 by ricardo tan