Posts Tagged ‘Clint Mansell’

Best Scores of 2017 – United Kingdom, Part I

December 11, 2017 Leave a comment

The first installment in my annual series of articles looking at the best “under the radar” scores from around the world concentrates on music from films from my home country, the United Kingdom. There has been a wealth of riches from all four parts of the country – England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland – and this first set of reviews encompasses a rich and varied set of scores from Oscar winning favorites and talented newcomers, dramas, documentaries, comedies, and even a groundbreaking animation. There will be more to come from the UK later! Read more…

Best Scores of 2016 – United Kingdom

January 14, 2017 1 comment

The fifth installment in my annual series of articles looking at the best “under the radar” scores from around the world concentrates on music from films and television from my home country, the United Kingdom. This year’s crop of British beauties includes a lovely animation score from a respected veteran, an exciting drama score from an increasingly impressive talent, and several outstanding scores for television. Read more…

NOAH – Clint Mansell

April 2, 2014 1 comment

noahOriginal Review by Jonathan Broxton

The story of Noah, in terms of the Christian bible, is a fairly simple one: having become displeased with the corruption and cruelty of mankind, God makes the decision to essentially ‘wipe the slate clean’ and destroy humanity by way of a great flood. In order to preserve some semblance of life, God tasks Noah with building an enormous wooden ark into which he can fit a male and female specimen of every animal and bird on the planet – every creeping thing that creeps – so that life may begin again once the flood subsides. According to the story, which originally appears in the book of Genesis, it rains for forty days and forty nights, all of the evil of the world of washed away, and humanity began again anew. Darren Aronofsky’s visually staggering, theologically progressive film builds on the original biblical story and adds more action and fantasy elements, including a vicious antagonist who rebels against God and wants to take the ark for himself, and featuring a race of beings known as The Watchers, fallen angels cursed to be bound in a stony prison. Russell Crowe headlines the cast as Noah himself, with support from Jennifer Connelly, Anthony Hopkins, Ray Winstone and Emma Watson. Read more…

BLACK SWAN – Clint Mansell

December 7, 2010 Leave a comment

Original Review by Jonathan Broxton

An intense psycho-sexual drama which touches on a number of themes ranging from parental oppression and body dysmorphic disorder to sexual repression and the search for perfection, Black Swan is the latest film from the challenging director Darren Aronofsky, the man behind films such as Requiem For a Dream, The Fountain and The Wrestler. Natalie Portman stars in a tour-de-force performance as Nina, a young and talented ballerina in the New York City ballet, whose personal life is dominated entirely by her overbearing mother Erica (Barbara Hershey), herself a former dancer. Artistic director Thomas Leroy (Vincent Cassel) decides to promote Nina to the leading role in their new production of Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake, as the expense of prima ballerina Beth (Winona Ryder), but Thomas is concerned as to whether the naïve and virginal Nina has enough ‘dark side’ to play both the White Swan and the Black Swan on stage. Into this mix comes the free-spirited and sexually adventurous Lily (Mila Kunis), a transfer from the San Francisco ballet; before long, Nina and Lily embark on a dangerous relationship which is part-friendship part-rivalry, which threatens to shatter Nina’s already tenuous grasp on her sanity. Read more…

MOON – Clint Mansell

June 12, 2009 2 comments

Original Review by Jonathan Broxton

An existential sci-fi drama written and directed by Duncan Jones (formerly known as Zowie Bowie, and son of rock icon David Bowie), Moon stars Sam Rockwell as Sam Bell, an employee of Lunar Industries who is coming to the end of his three year stint working at a gas production facility on the moon. As the sole employee of the lunar station, and with limited communication possible with Earth, Sam spends most of his time conversing with GERTY (voiced by Kevin Spacey), an intelligent super-computer programmed to attend to his needs. However, after Sam is knocked unconscious in accident, he awakens to find that he is no longer alone on the moon, and slowly begins to realize that his world is not what he thought it was. Read more…

THE WRESTLER – Clint Mansell

December 19, 2008 Leave a comment

Original Review by Jonathan Broxton

A critically acclaimed, Award-winning drama about the life of a washed-up former wrestler struggling to salvage what’s left of his dignity, The Wrestler is directed by Darren Aronofsky and features a career-changing performance by Mickey Rourke as Randy “The Ram” Robinson, an aging professional wrestler decades past his prime, who now barely gets by working small wrestling shows and as a part-time grocery store employee. As he faces health problems that may end his wrestling career for good he attempts to come to terms with his life outside the ring, trying to reconcile with the daughter (Evan Rachel Wood) he abandoned in childhood, and forming a closer bond with a stripper (Marisa Tomei) for whom he has romantic feelings. Read more…


February 15, 2008 Leave a comment

Original Review by Jonathan Broxton

A pleasant-natured romantic comedy starring Ryan Reynolds, Isla Fisher, Abigail Breslin and Rachel Weisz, and directed by Adam Brooks, Definitely Maybe tells the story of a political speech-writer (Reynolds) recounting the stories of how he met his ex-wife, and some of his other earlier romances, to his precocious and inquisitive daughter, Maya (Breslin).

It’s one of those nice, warm-hearted movies in which everyone has a happy ending, and in order to capture the contemporary flavor of the story, the director turned to composer Clint Mansell for the music – an unusual choice, considering Mansell’s background as a musical with the band Pop Will Eat Itself, but one which turns out well. Read more…

SMOKIN’ ACES – Clint Mansell

January 26, 2007 Leave a comment

Original Review by Clark Douglas

Yet another Tarantino-inspired crime flick, Joe Carnahan’s “Smokin’ Aces” is one of the more wildly diverse motion pictures I’ve seen this year. It’s like channel surfing, and the only thing all the channels have in common is that they are violent and full of profanity. Otherwise, the tone flops all over the place… broad comedy, subtle comedy, brutal action, morality tale, anti-morality tale, mystery, drama… ultimately, the movie shoots off it’s climax too early and becomes too confused for it’s own good. Despite solid turns from the likes of Ryan Reynolds and Jeremy Piven, and an otherwise strong supporting cast, it’s just a big mess of a movie. Read more…

THE FOUNTAIN – Clint Mansell

November 22, 2006 Leave a comment

Original Review by Jonathan Broxton

The Fountain is the latest film from director Darren Aronofsky, whose debut film Pi was a cult success in 1998, and whose 2000 follow up Requiem for a Dream earned massive critical acclaim, as well as an Oscar nomination for actress Ellen Burstyn. The Fountain, in terms of scope, is his most ambitious effort yet. It stars Hugh Jackman, Rachel Weisz and Ellen Burstyn (again) and is about nothing less than quest for immortality. Jackman stars as pharmaceutical drug developer Tommy Creo, who is desperately trying to save his wife Izzy (Weisz), who is afflicted with an inoperable brain tumour. Izzy is a writer, and has been researching a book about a medieval quest to find the fabled Fountain of Youth, with Queen Isabel (Weisz) sending a Conquistador (Jackman) to New Spain to find it. Intercut with these two stories is a third timeline which takes place in the 26th century, and focuses on a man named Tom (Jackman), who is taking a space trip in the company of a giant tree. Yes, you did read that last sentence correctly. Read more…

SAHARA – Clint Mansell

April 8, 2005 Leave a comment

saharaOriginal Review by Jonathan Broxton

British composer Clint Mansell has had an interesting career arc. Beginning as a vocalist/guitarist/keyboard player with the 1980s electro-rock band Pop Will Eat Itself, he went on to produce and arrange music for a variety of bands in the 1990s, including Nine Inch Nails, before making his film debut in 1998 with the low-budget sci-fi cult Pi. Further projects, notably Requiem for a Dream, The Hole and Murder By Numbers, brought him further into the limelight, and he briefly received attention when his theme from Requiem for a Dream was re-orchestrated and used in the trailer for The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers in 2002, but nothing in his back catalogue gave even the merest hint that he was capable of writing something like Sahara, which is possibly one of the most engaging and – for want of a better word – cool action scores in quite some time. Read more…