Home > Reviews > OSTWIND: ZUSAMMEN SIND WIR FREI – Annette Focks


ostwindOriginal Review by Jonathan Broxton

Ostwind: Zusammen Sind Wir Frei is one of those films which, had it been made in America, would have been made by Disney. It tells the story of a rebellious teenager, Mika, who is sent to stay with her stern grandmother, a former champion show jumper, on the family countryside stud farm, in order to “straighten her out”. There she encounters Ostwind, a temperamental old horse whose lack of discipline and bad temper led to the end of Grandmother’s competition career. Naturally, Mika and Ostwind bond, leading to reconciliations all round. The film is directed by Katja von Garnier, stars Hanna Binke, Marvin Linke, Cornelia Froboess and Tilo Prückner, and has a lovely original score by Annette Focks.

Like Night Train to Lisbon, Ostwind is fully orchestral too, although this score has a much more optimistic, upbeat sound, and even some hints of “spaghetti western” music in keeping with the film’s story about the bond between man and beast. The first cue, “Opener”, introduces the score’s core idea, combining rolling percussion and subtle electric guitar accents with more classically orchestral string themes, representing the sound of urban Deutschland as it collides with the more stately pace of life in the tranquil countryside. This concept continues on through cues such as “Mika Verwüstet Ihr Zimmer”, the more rock-inflected “Treckerfahrt”, the dreamy “Erste Annäherung”, and the central motif for “Mika”, which combine electric guitars and hopeful, searching string writing and a lilting piano motif.

As the score progresses the more lushly, romantic, pastoral music becomes a little more prominent. The gorgeous “Ostwind Flieht” and the determined-sounding “Reitunterricht” have a real sense of openness and freedom. “Sehnsucht” unexpectedly introduces a faraway-sounding female vocal performance in to the palette, which is quite lovely. “Einsam” presents Mika’s main theme in an attractive setting for a delicate piano. Conversely, “Standritt” brings the guitar and rock elements back in full force in a standout cue, and everything builds up to a powerful finale, which includes such excellent pieces as “Grenzenlose Freiheit”. With this score, and Night Train to Lisbon, Annette Focks may have finally started making a few in-roads into the consciousness of more mainstream film music fans – and not before time!

Buy the Ostwind soundtrack from the Movie Music UK Store

Track Listing:

  • Opener (2:51)
  • Mika Verwüstet Ihr Zimmer (2:04)
  • Wut Und Trauer (2:43)
  • Zugfahrt (1:29)
  • Treckerfahrt (1:52)
  • Erinnerungsfotos (1:54)
  • Erste Annäherung (3:01)
  • Eine Nacht Bei Ostwind (1:18)
  • Fütterung (1:12)
  • Mika (4:06)
  • Mika Striegelt Ostwind (3:15)
  • Ostwind Flieht (1:52)
  • Pferdeschlächter (1:07)
  • Sehnsucht (2:39)
  • Im Stall (1:30)
  • Reitunterricht (2:51)
  • Auf Dem Gipfel (1:47)
  • Abendessen (0:55)
  • Turnier (2:42)
  • Strandritt (2:35)
  • Ostwind ist Krank (2:37)
  • Betrug (1:23)
  • Einsam (3:07)
  • Vakuumgefühl (0:33)
  • Trauer (2:08)
  • Abfahrt (2:16)
  • Das Wiedersehen (2:09)
  • Ostwind Und Mika (2:43)
  • Grenzenlose Freiheit (2:52)
  • Farewell (2:08)
  • Up In the Air (3:25)
  • Mika Findet Ostwind Nicht (2:50)

Running Time: 71 minutes 57 seconds

Alhambra CD-A9014 (2013)

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