Dedicated to reviews and news of music for film, TV and games

Wednesday, December 12, 2007


Christopher Lennertz has two new seasonal scores coming out in the States. The first, a live-action/CGI film version of the popular Alvin & The Chipmunks, features a full orchestral score, with the odd choral moment. It's big, action-packed and powerful at times, whimsical at others, and has an appropriate amount of slapstick, with a tender theme for guitar and/or orchestra providing the sentiment. The composer's publicists, Costa Communications, kindly sent me a promo disc of the score, which runs some 36 minutes and would make an enjoyable commercial release, but no news on that front as yet, I'm afraid.
The composer's other score is for the African American ensemble comedy The Perfect Holiday, which stars Gabrielle Union and Morris Chestnut, with narration by Queen Latifah. Again, the music is orchestral, with an appropriate Christmas feel, incorporating sleigh bells and fragments of popular Christmas Carols. Energy is in abundence, but there is of course plenty of sentiment and of course not a little whimsy. There is also some retro-styled caper music, with the feel of Mission: Impossible and The Incredibles about it. The disc, again sent to me by Costa Communications, features some 24 minutes of music which, if that is all there is in the film, makes it unlikely there will be a commerical release, which is a pity, as it's an entertaining listen.
Good job, Mr. Lennertz!

Cinecocktail Calibro 3
Music by Various Composers
Beat Records CDX 1004 (Italy)
22 Tracks 62:06 mins + DVD

This third offering in the entertaining series of compilations of Italian film music of the '70s features music from various police thrillers, a popular genre at the time, but which now are perhaps treated with more reverence than they were back then. Composers represented include the De Angeles brothers, Armando Trovaioli, Riz Ortolani, Gian Franco Plenizio, Carlo Rustichelli, Franco Micalizzi, Ennio Morricone, Lalo Gori, Stelvio Cipriani and Francesco De Masi, in whose name an event was held in June, not only to honour his great work for the cinema, but to celebrate the age of the Italian cop movies and their great scores. A DVD is included in this attractive digipack-housed release, in which many of the composers and musicians that played and sung on their scores remenisce, and there's footage of the event, with Franco Micalizzi conducting a select band of musicians in selections from the scores. Of course, the language spoken is Italian, but English subtitles are provided. Just a couple of small ctiticisms of this otherwise wonderful slice of nostalgia. Firstly, somebody had the not so great idea of giving an aged quality to some of the footage by laying in scratches across the screen, which are very irritating and secondly, those interviewed are not easily identified.
As for the CD itself, there's a good cross-section of music presented from thrilling and dramatic cues, to funky movers, to easy-listening grooves, to jazz-influenced pieces,to those with a more folksy feel, all rhythmic and melodic, and all very '70s. The disc concludes with the infectious song "A Man Before Your Time," that featured in more than one cop thriller of the time.
An accompanying foldout booklet is also included, with notes on the DVD by Daniele De Gemini and plenty of full-colourt poster artwork. All in all a great souvenir and one that is well worth adding to your collection. Visit


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