Posts Tagged ‘Marco Beltrami’

THE THING – Marco Beltrami

October 19, 2011 2 comments

Original Review by Jonathan Broxton

Director Matthijs van Heijningen Jr.’s The Thing is a prequel to the popular and influential 1982 film of the same name, which was directed by John Carpenter and starred Kurt Russell and Wilford Brimley. The first few moments of that film show a Norwegian man in a helicopter shooting at a dog barreling across the frozen wastes of the Antarctic; the next 20 minutes reveal that the Norwegian was part of a scientific team, all of whose members have been gruesomely killed, and their research station burned to the ground. This film looks at the circumstances leading up to that awful discovery – who the Norwegians were, what they found buried deep beneath the ice, and more importantly, what killed them. The film stars Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Joel Edgerton, Ulrich Thomsen, and a whole host of Norwegian character actors in the smaller roles, and has an original score by Marco Beltrami, who spends part of his time channeling Ennio Morricone, and the rest of the time drawing upon his considerable horror movie music experience. Read more…

DON’T BE AFRAID OF THE DARK – Marco Beltrami and Buck Sanders

September 1, 2011 Leave a comment

Original Review by Jonathan Broxton:

Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark is a creepy horror movie co-written produced by Guillermo Del Toro, and directed by Troy Nixey. It’s a remake of a 1973 TV movie of the same name, and stars Katie Holmes and Guy Pearce as Alex and Kim, a young couple who have just moved into an old, rambling house, Blackwood Manor, which Alex – an architect – is intending to renovate. However, when Alex’s daughter from a previous relationship, Sally (Bailee Madison) comes to stay, things start to happen in the house in the dead of night. Left alone to investigate the macabre history and dark corners of the estate, Sally begins to hear rasping voices whispering from the basement, who promise her understanding and friendship, who are so very hungry and would like to be set free… Read more…

SOUL SURFER – Marco Beltrami

May 6, 2011 2 comments

Original Review by Jonathan Broxton

Soul Surfer tells the true story of Bethany Hamilton, a champion youth surfer from Hawaii who, while out on an early morning surf with her best friend, had her life forever changed when her left arm was bitten off by a tiger shark – she was just 13 years old at the time. Despite suffering this horrific injury and hovering close to death, Bethany recovered enough to be able to return to competitive surfing just months later with only one arm, and went on to win the National Scholastic Surfing Association National Championships in 2005. The film, which is directed by Sean McNamara, stars Anna Sophia Robb as Hamilton, features Dennis Quaid, Helen Hunt and Carrie Underwood in supporting roles, and has a superb and highly original score by the versatile Marco Beltrami. Read more…

KNOWING – Marco Beltrami

March 20, 2009 Leave a comment

Original Review by Jonathan Broxton

Knowing is a hugely impressive, enjoyable and thought-provoking sci-fi drama directed by Alex Proyas and starring Nicolas Cage as MIT professor John Koestler. Recently widowed and with a young son named Caleb (Chandler Canterbury), John spends much of his spare time staring into the bottom of a whisky glass, until a time capsule, buried 50 years ago by the class of 1959, is opened at Caleb’s school, and Caleb inadvertently becomes the recipient of a sheet full of seemingly meaningless numbers, scribbled onto the sheet by a strange little girl named Abby half a century ago. After finding the paper in Caleb’s bag, John discovers to his horror that the paper has accurately predicted the date, place and number of deaths of every major human disaster in recent history – and also seemingly shows where the next ones will take place. To reveal what takes place next would do the film a disservice – suffice to say that as the story develops it raises a number of interesting theological and sociological questions while presenting several visually spectacular, emotionally visceral action sequences that are as technically impressive as they are awe-inspiring. Read more…

MAX PAYNE – Marco Beltrami and Buck Sanders

October 17, 2008 Leave a comment

Original Review by Jonathan Broxton

The latest video game to become a big-budget action movie, Max Payne is directed by John Moore and stars Mark Wahlberg as the eponymous lead character, a DEA agent whose family was slain as part of a conspiracy who, while investigating the shadowy criminal underworld whi may be responsible for his wife’s murder, teams up with a sexy assassin (Mila Kunis), who is herself trying to avenge her sister’s death. While the video game received a superb noir score from Finnish composers Kärtsy Hatakka and Kimmo Kajasto, Max Payne’s cinematic cousin is scored by Marco Beltrami in collaboration with his long-time assistant and sound designer Buck Sanders. Read more…

THE EYE – Marco Beltrami

February 1, 2008 Leave a comment

Original Review by Jonathan Broxton

The remake of a very good Thai horror movie from 2002, directed by David Moreau and Xavier Palud, The Eye stars Jessica Alba as a young woman named Sydney Wells, blind from birth, who undergoes a revolutionary new surgical procedure to transplant her corneas, which successfully restores her eyesight. However, before long, Sydney begins to realize that, in addition to having to readjust to life in a sighted world, she has something else to cope with: she can see ghosts.

The film, which also stars Alessandro Nivola, Parker Posey and Rade Serbedzija, features an original score by Marco Beltrami, who is very good at this sort of thing. It begins with a contemporary main title for guitars, strings and voice Read more…

3:10 TO YUMA – Marco Beltrami

September 7, 2007 Leave a comment

Original Review by Clark Douglas

There haven’t been many western films in the past couple of decades, something that many fans of cinema (including myself) have bemoaned. The few westerns that have appeared, good as they may be, seem to be carrying a lot of weight on their shoulders… they have the pressure of “reviving the cinematic western” hanging over them. With “3:10 to Yuma”, we are given an extraordinarily rare sort of western film… one that doesn’t seem to realize that the western is dead. It’s a lively, sad, rousing, funny motion picture that provides intelligent, but unpretentious entertainment from start to finish. Read more…

CAPTIVITY – Marco Beltrami

July 13, 2007 1 comment

Original Review by Jonathan Broxton

Despite being reviled by pretty much every film critic who saw the film, Captivity nevertheless managed to become a popular and successful underground hit, and a memorable entry in the ‘torture porn’ sub-genre of horror films. Somewhat unexpectedly, the film is directed by Roland Joffé, the Oscar-winning filmmaker of The Mission and The Killing Fields, and stars Elisha Cuthbert as Jennifer Tree, a popular tabloid Hollywood starlet who awakens to find herself a prisoner in a grubby cellar, being systematically tortured by an attacker whose motives are unclear. And, basically, that’s it. Young Miss Cuthbert spends the movie enduring one sickening physical and psychological attack after another, until the movie ends. And this is what passes for entertainment these days? Read more…

LIVE FREE OR DIE HARD – Marco Beltrami

June 29, 2007 Leave a comment

Original Review by Jonathan Broxton

A rather belated fourth entry into the Die Hard franchise, 12 years after the last installment (Die Hard With a Vengeance), Live Free or Die Hard sees Bruce Willis back as John McClane in the role which made him an 80s action star. Here, McClane is an aging NYPD cop with a teenage daughter who is forced to do battle against an Internet-based terrorist organization who is systematically shutting down the technological capabilities of the entire United States, plunging the country into crisis.

The film also stars Timothy Olyphant, Justin Long and Hong Kong action star Maggie Q, and features a bombastic score from Marco Beltrami. The late, great Michael Kamen’s musical fingerprints were all over the first three movies in the Die Hard franchise Read more…

THE INVISIBLE – Marco Beltrami

April 27, 2007 Leave a comment

Original Review by Clark Douglas

Let’s just take a moment to be frank and honest here. I’m having a heck of a time trying to figure out how to start this review. I’ve got a few things to say about “The Invisible”, but I’m not really sure how to start saying them, or how to string them together in a particularly interesting way. I suppose the first thing that my mind is pondering is what led David S. Goyer to direct this film. For those of you who haven’t heard of the man, he’s been involved as a writer, director, and/or producer on such films as “Batman Begins”, the “Blade Trilogy”, “Ghost Rider”, “The Crow: City of Angels”, “Dark City”, and he’s currently writing “The Dark Knight” and “The Flash”. He’s an action movie/superhero guy. What on earth possessed him to make a moody teenage ghost story like “The Invisible”? *the critic paused, and decided to abandon that train of thought*. Read more…

THE OMEN – Marco Beltrami

June 9, 2006 1 comment

Original Review by Jonathan Broxton

When Marco Beltrami was asked to score director John Moore’s remake of The Omen, it’s difficult to know whether he jumped for joy, or groaned in dismay. Jerry Goldsmith won his one and only Academy Award for his score for the original Omen in 1976, and in doing so added a new dimension to the way horror movies are scored: the ‘Latin Chant’ has become so-over used these days that it’s almost a cliché, but back in the day when Goldsmith first used them, they were groundbreaking. Beltrami is, of course, a former student of Goldsmith’s at USC, and so stepping into his great teacher shoes must have been a daunting prospect indeed. The wonderful news is that, ultimately, Beltrami has produced a wonderful modern horror score which is original to Beltrami’s musical sensibility, but can also stand as a loving homage to his mentor. Read more…


December 17, 2004 Leave a comment

flightofthephoenixOriginal Review by Jonathan Broxton

Marco Beltrami, by popular consensus, has enjoyed the most fruitful year of his career in 2004. Having already written excellent sci-fi scores for Hellboy and I Robot, he finishes the year with a score for director John Moore’s re-make of the classic 1965 disaster thriller Flight of the Phoenix. The original was directed by Robert Aldrich, starred Jimmy Stewart and Richard Attenborough, and featured a good score by Frank De Vol. The new version stars Dennis Quaid, Giovanni Ribisi and Miranda Otto, but the basic stories are the same: a group of contractors from an oil company are forced to make a crash landing in the Mongolian Gobi desert after the plane taking them home runs into a huge sandstorm. Hundreds of miles from civilization, and with virtually no hope of rescue, the disparate group of survivors are forced to put their trust in the least trustworthy member of the group – a mysterious and insecure man who claims to be an engineer, and who says he can rebuild their wrecked plane and return them safely home. Read more…

I, ROBOT – Marco Beltrami

July 16, 2004 Leave a comment

irobotOriginal Review by Jonathan Broxton

Marco Beltrami was a late addition to the creative team of I Robot, following the dismissal of original composer Trevor Jones by director Alex Proyas. Beltrami had just nineteen days to write and record his replacement score – no mean feat to accomplish in such a short space of time, and with the added pressure of knowing that the film was one of 2004’s most anticipated summer releases. His success is nothing short of remarkable, and it’s quality is testament to his increasing stature as one of film music’s true emerging talents. Read more…

HELLBOY – Marco Beltrami

April 2, 2004 Leave a comment

hellboyOriginal Review by Jonathan Broxton

Comic books seem to be Hollywood’s most fertile breeding grounds for new stories these days; after exhausting the Batman, Spider-Man and Superman franchises, some lesser-known works have been adapted recently – and so hot on the heels of Daredevil and The Punisher comes Hellboy, adapted from the work of Mike Mignola by my old drinking buddy Pete Briggs, and directed by Guillermo Del Toro. Hellboy is the story of a demon (Ron Perlman), conjured up by a team of Nazi scientists to help their failing cause at the end of World War II. Rescued, while still a baby, by the kindly Professor Bruttenholm (John Hurt), Hellboy grows up to be a member of the FBI Bureau of Paranormal Research and Defense, whose motto is “There are things that go bump in the night – we are the ones who bump back”. Hellboy is called into action when the Russian mad monk Rasputin (Karel Roden) – who originally summoned Hellboy all those years ago – is resurrected, and attempts to open a portal between Earth and the Netherworld, which will allow all manner of unspeakable evil to pass through. Accompanied by rookie FBI agent Myers (Rupert Evans) and fellow BPRD “freaks” Abe Sapien (Doug Jones) and Liz Sherman (Selma Blair), Hellboy sets off to track down Rasputin and his minions, unaware that he has a larger part to play in the scheme of things… Read more…

THE WATCHER – Marco Beltrami

September 8, 2000 Leave a comment

thewatcherOriginal Review by Jonathan Broxton

I’m starting to get worried by the way Marco Beltrami’s career is progressing – or isn’t progressing, as the case may be. When Beltrami first burst onto the scene five years ago with the arrival of Scream, it seemed as though a great new talent in the soundtrack world had arrived. A composer with talent, a gift for melody, and who knew how to write for a big orchestra. A dozen or so movies later, and Beltrami is still scoring more horror movies than anything else, and herein lies the problem. With just a couple of exceptions – like the disco drama 54 and the Emmy Award winning Tuesdays With Morrie – the vast majority of the Italian-American’s work has been in the horror and thriller genres, and if he’s not careful he’s going to end up in the same situation Chris Young was in ten years ago: a great composer stuck in a pigeonhole from which he can’t escape. Read more…