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  • Nosferatu: A Symphony Of Horrors (1998 Score To 1922 Film)
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Nosferatu: A Symphony Of Horrors (1998 Score To 1922 Film) Soundtrack


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Audio CD, Soundtrack, February 17, 1998
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (February 17, 1998)
  • Original Release Date: June 3, 1929
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Soundtrack
  • Label: Public Broadcasting Service (PBS)
  • ASIN: B000004BQO
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #116,321 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Overture-Omens Of Nosferatu
2. Hutter And Ellen
3. Ellen's Disquiet
4. Journey To Orlok's Castle
5. In The Castle
6. Ellen Sleep-Walks
7. Hutter's Discovery
8. Loading The Coffins
9. Ellen By The Seashore
10. The Ship Of Doom
11. Orlok's Lair
12. The Plague
13. The Pursuit Of Knock
14. The Power Of Orlok/The Death Of Ellen

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Ray Neslowe on September 27, 2004
Format: Audio CD
Firstly, a couple of errors on the previous reviews. In John Bush's All Music review, he states this was composed for an American release. Not so. Bernard composed this new score for a series of silent films on the BBC's Channel 4. (Carl Davis's score for Chaney's Phantom of the Opera is another one in that series well worth picking up.)
Secondly, Michael from Kent states that there were never scores composed specifically for silent films. Again, not so. Many later silent films--especially the big-budget films--had scores specially commissioned for them and orchestrated for any number of instrumentations. The same score often was written out for orchestra, small bands, and even solo piano or organ, so that it could be played in venues of all different sizes. (The book Film Music by Roy M. Prendergast is an excellent resource on this point.) And, in fact, Nosferatu had a score written specially for it by Hans Erdmann. Now, unfortunately, that "original" score was mostly lost. What fragments that remained were pieced together and filled out with Erdmann's other film music for a disc on RCA conducted by Gillian B. Anderson. The same thing was done with Giuseppe Becce's fragments for Cabinet of Dr. Caligari on Koch, and both are worth seeking out. So, there were "original scores" for silent films, this just doesn't happen to be one.
Finally, the disc itself. For fans of Bernard's work on the Hammer films this is a must have. Far more mature and interesting than some of his earlier work, it nonetheless retains the elements that made his scores so exciting in the first place. I would rank it among his best work in the genre. For fans of more romantic work like Waxman and Rozsa should see if they can find a copy of the Erdmann score.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By caesarrdn on December 12, 2004
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I own three editions of Nosferatu on DVD, with five different soundtracks between them, but none of them come nearly as close to capturing the essence of Murnau's masterpiece as James Bernard's powerful score. I can close my eyes while listening to this CD and visualize the action as it plays along with the music...from Orlok's menace to Hutter's naivete to Ellen's dark foreboding...it's all here! I was impressed with Bernard's work with Hammer films, and he definitely didn't disappoint with this one. Unlike the other scores, the majority of which were anachronistic (using sounds and styles quite out of place set against the 1922 vintage of the film), this one has a credibility...although this is by no means the original soundtrack (which, as someone else here pointed out, has been lost to the ages save for a few fragments), it is surely a candidate for the best score to take its place.

That being said, it is a true shame that there is no edition of Nosferatu out on the market with this soundtrack...this score was composed for a British television presentation of the movie, but I can't seem to find any information as to whether or not this edition of the film was ever released to the public on VHS or DVD. I tried playing it with my Alpha Video version of Nosferatu (which, at 64 minutes, is the only one that matches the length of the CD) but the movie constantly lagged behind the corresponding music). If Kino or Image ever decides to release a newer edition of Nosferatu on DVD, they would do well to lose the avant-garde scores and use this instead.
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Michael J. Chrush on February 8, 2001
Format: Audio CD
It may be taken for granted after seeing a particular copy of a classic film that includes a certain background music that sounds perfect with the film, that one would expect this particular music to be available on CD. Such as not the case with NOSFERATU, but this splendid CD is still worth listening to. As many film collectors know, F.W. Murnau's legendary silent classic NOSFERATU has became available through very many VHS editions, from such distributors as King Video, Vintage Silent Classics, Hollywood Gold, Blackhawk Videos, Republic Pictures Silents, and most recently we have the alleged Ultimate Edition available on DVD. It may be common knowledge that all videos contain a different music score in the background. So in silent films there is no OFFICIAL music score. James Bernard, who has for years been a popular composer of the British Hammer Horror Classics such as THE CURSE OF FRANKENSTEIN and HORROR OF DRACULA. Whereas Bernard's music for THE CURSE OF FRANKENSTEIN is somewhat escalator-ish and at the same time thrilling, the HORROR OF DRACULA score consists of three or four note motifs that bring to full intensity the pure evil of Count Dracula. In both films, they blend perfectly well with Christopher Lee's incredible performances. With this recent release of the NOSFERATU soundtrack, Bernard brings a similar shtick. The opening Overture is at first creepy then gets loud and compelling. Please note, these are all music pieces that we have never heard in any video release known as of yet, so for this reason hearing this CD would be worth it. With the Blackhawk Video release of the opening credits you first hearing a wolf howling, followed by frenzied, chilling music. You can actually feel what kind of a movie you are about to watch.Read more ›
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