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Oliver Twist Soundtrack
|Price:||CDN$ 14.94 & FREE Shipping on orders over CDN$ 25. Details|
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Listening to Rachel Portman's score, you find yourself wondering if she misread the assignment sheet and thought she was working for an adaptation of the Dickens classic made by Masterpiece Theater, not one by troubled, thoughtful cinéaste Roman Polanski. The music here is lovely. Portman, whose other works include Nicholas Nickleby and Emma, is very skilled at evoking 19th-centure ambiance without falling into pure mimicky of that period's classical composers. But "lovely" isn't necessarily what one might expect from Oliver Twist. It's all very quiet. How could something titled "Escape from Fagin" be that subdued?
And yet so it is. "The Murder" reprises similar themes with the same results. The Prague Philharmonic (a popular orchestra who's recorded everything from Dr. Strangelove: Music from the Films of Stanley Kubrick to the heavy strains of black metal band Dimmu Borgir) does its best, but one wishes for more depth throughout. Polanski is never afraid to stare straight into the darkness; Portman should have felt empowered to do the same. --Elisabeth Vincentelli
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
What we have in Oliver Twist is pretty much the Rachel Portman we've always known, only now she's reached into unfimiliar territory for many of her listeners: dark, brooding themes and lots of minor key tonal centering. The score features a few notable themes, but only two are central to the score: Oliver's Theme and Fagin's Theme. Both of these themes are juxtaposed against one another effectively to create quite the wonderful English-sounding musical backdrop to Dickens' dark yet quirky character tale.
Portman's sensibilities towards strings and winds remain as strong as they ever have been, only this time she relies much more on use of the double basses and lower wind instruments to create carefully brooding textures for the more gloomy sections of the score. Her rhythmic action motifs are repetitive but effective and the simpler portions of the score are exquisitely well done and precisely orchestrated.
Overall, this is one of the biggest film score surprises of the year and I heartily recommend it to all Portman fans and especially to film music fans who have been disappointed in the 2005 film score year on the whole. This is a score to be long remembered and one to which Dickens himself would, I believe, give his approval.
If you've seen the movie, the soundtrack that goes with it (as well as the movie itself) is phenomenal.
If you're like me, a John William's fan, you'll be able to follow the movie through with this soundtrack alone. It is that good. Listening to it on a quiet afternoon or on the airplane, wherever you may be, can totally take you to that place in London back in the 19th century.
A lovely album. Must-buy.
"I'll Do Anything"
"Consider Yourself Part of the Family"
"Where Is Love?"
"Who Will Buy My Flowers"
Heck, the album cover doesn't even include a still from the film. What a ripoff. And what a shame that the actual soundtrack is unavailable.