55 of 58 people found the following review helpful
on August 31, 2002
Probably the biggest compliment I can give this Soundtrack is that it is one of two movie soundtracks that I have ever bought. The other was The Godfather. I NEVER get excited enough over a movie's score to go out and buy it. Even if I really like the way it works in the movie, I don't buy it. In fact, under almost NO circumstances do I buy movie soundtracks, they don't usually do anything for me. But I'm being redundant...
When I saw Requiem for a Dream, the very first thing that struck me about it was the music. When I heard "Summer Overture" in the first few minutes of the movie, I loved it. LOVED it. I knew at that moment that I had to buy this soundtrack, and only hoped that they had released one. And that was before I had heard the best parts of the soundtrack, like Lux Aerterna, Meltdown, and Winter Overture. But really all the songs on here are outstanding. Yeah like many people said, they are all pretty short, but really that only makes you like it more. Have you ever seen a movie that you felt ended way too soon, and you wanted to see more of it? Well, that makes you just want to go watch it even more, right? Same with this soundtrack. The fact that the tracks are so excrutiatingly short makes you listen to them over and over. The sound of that violin (you know what I mean if you've heard it) is so haunting, yet so beautiful, and yet again it is so damn catchy! You'll have it stuck in your head for days. You'll be whistling it as you go about your daily routine. I personally often find it stuck in my head while at work, and when I get home I pop this CD in and can't help buy smile as I hear those first sounds of the bass of Summer Overture.... Trust me, buy this and you will NEVER regret it.
36 of 38 people found the following review helpful
on July 1, 2001
It roughly goes: if you like the film, you'll love the soundtrack. Many soundtracks sound great when mixed with the film but feel emotionally empty when simply played on a CD. Other soundtracks, great soundtracks, are able to stand alone from the film and help you to remember those moments from said flick that grabbed you. Listening to Clint Mansell's score for Darren Aronofsky's drug-addled nightmare "Requiem For A Dream", I still get shivers in my remembering the tragic events of the film via Mansell and the Kronos Quartet's wonderful work.
Like the film, soundtrack is divided into three parts: Summer, Fall and Winter. Summer contains 15 songs, none of them over three minutes long (Track 10, "High On Life", lasts a full eleven seconds) and all of them bearing ominous warnings for what's to come, key standouts being the tentative "Ghosts Of Things To Come" and the forboding "Hope Overture", the latter being a mixture of strings and beats that wouldn't sound out of place on Bjork's "Homogenic" album. Fall has 9 songs, and it is here where Mansell lays heavier programming onto the Quartet's stuff, as heard on the first track "Cleaning Apartment", and hints at the film's near-insanity at this point with the menacing mounting of "Arnold" and, particularly, "Sara Goldfarb Has Left The Building" (advice: listen to the latter extremely loudly). The Winter section starts with a jolt with the 19 seconds of "Winter Overture", and never lets up. Amongst the insane screams of "The Beginning Of The End" and "Meltdown" (subtle titles if I do say so myself), however, some slower, sadder stuff seeps through, particularly on "Ghosts Of A Future Lost", a theme built throughout the three sections that ends here on an emotional high, and "Lux Aeterna".
Mansell and the Quartet are content with using many musical themes throughout the soundtrack, as the distinct string arrangements that begin as early as "Summer Overture" continually reappear throughout the CD. This is also rather more obviously identified in the repetition in titles, examples being "Dreams", "Ghosts" and "Tense". But each track is given a tweak via Mansell's subtle mixing that contrasts with what is essentially the same song that has gone before. As for the congas: well, unless you've seen the film, you won't appreciate them as much as you would by simply listening to them cold (they sound like something Vic Reeves and Bob Mortimer would do!) Fan of the film: buy the soundtrack. Fan of diverse new composers: buy the soundtrack.
32 of 35 people found the following review helpful
In the spirit of Laurie Anderson and John Cage, Clint Mansell makes his own minimalist statement here. He provides the perfect mentalscape for a movie which twitches and writhes, boogies at times, rolls and gently rocks. Dark night of the soul stuff, but also choppily foreward bound. The main theme is entirely memorable and will be repeating itself in your head for days, weeks, years to come!
Kudos of course to the always on the mark Kronos Quartet. What can't these musicians play? If this is your initiation into their music, you must check out their huge output of CDs, everything ranging from traditional African music, baroque, to the most progressive modern composers. They are one of our national treasures!
If you're prone to nightmares, however, you might want to play this CD in the light of day, not the really early AM hours. Like the movie, it has a certain fatalistic quality about it. Suicide Hotline soundtrack, perhaps? For that matter, if you're feeling down in the dumps, don't go near the movie, either. It will just convince you that there is no point. Hang it up!
But if the life force is with you and you actually enjoy a little melancholy edge now and again, this may very well be your background music!
29 of 32 people found the following review helpful
on July 30, 2001
First of all, you need to have seen the movie to truly appreciate and understand the soundtrack. All the songs have an eerie type of feel that only heightens as you listen. Really abstract, if you ask me.
Unfortunately, the entire thing is compiled by where it occured in the movie. I bought this cd mainly because of the overture, and it's dissected and cut on and off throughout the cd. Hardly like a complete piece. Some parts of the soundtrack are quiet and repetitive, whereas others are completely out of context (that is, if you're listening without track-skipping).
If you liked EVERY piece of music composed for 'Requiem For a Dream' and you don't mind hearing bits and pieces of each at a time, then this cd is for you. Don't get me wrong, the music is good... I just never felt like I could really get into the mood its trying to convey since the soundtrack switches constantly and abruptly.
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on December 21, 2000
When I went to see Requiem for a Dream, my friends and I were about five minutes late. Therefore, when we entered the theater, the first thing we heard was "Summer Overture". I remember thinking to myself, "Man, this movie is going to be disturbing." And so it was.
This soundtrack is, by far, the most poignant, beautiful, absolutely terrifying score I've ever heard. Make sure you've got your wits about you if you're going to listen to it, or it will eat you alive. Just to psych myself out, I listened to "Summer Overture" and "Dreams" while driving on a badly lighted street at night. Then I turned my headlights off. I got so scared that I nearly crashed into a tree. This soundtrack is dangerous! It gets in my dreams. It makes me feel like I've experienced things that I've never experienced. I never thought a conga could be so utterly frightening. Watch out.
15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
on December 12, 2002
I immediately purchased this soundtrack a day after seeing the film. As soon as I heard the music for the opening credits, I remember saying to myself, "I'm getting this soundtrack tomorrow." And I did, and since then I have lost track of the number of times I have listened to it.
Composed by Clint Mansell, with the Kronos Quartet and their great violin playing and such, "Requiem for a Dream" is an outstanding score that really gets into your head. It's a score full of dread, sorrow, pain, sadness, fear, and paranoia. Its got an industrial quality mixed with haunting violins to enhance it even more. (Imagine music by Trent Reznor with violins added to the mix.) A lot of the tracks are short and some are repetitive, but I had no problem with that. Yes, it might've been nice to hear some of the tracks extended, but I really like the overall layout of the tracks and how they appear in the order as the do in the movie.
Although the entire album is amazing, my favorite tracks are as follows: summer overture, ghosts of things to come, hope overture, tense, cleaning apartment, marion barfs, supermarket sweep, sara goldfarb has left the building, winter overture, southern hospitality, ghosts of future lost, meltdown, and lux aeterna. As good as the entire album is, the overtures really steal the show. (Especially "summer overture.")
Of course you'll most likely appreciate it more if you have indeed seen the film, but I can see people who haven't seen the movie enjoying this well-composed soundtrack as well. It's really great music, and you'll never look at music scores in the same way ever again. "Requiem for a Dream" definitely gets added to my list of favorite scores. In fact, this may become my overall favorite. Only time will tell. All I can say is that I am loving every bit of it right now, and I hope that Clint Mansell does more haunting scores like this one. Don't let this remarkable score pass you by. You'll regret it if you do.
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on January 11, 2001
This is one of the most incredible CD's I have ever listened to. The music is captivating, exciting, sad, tense and enjoyable all at the same time. I can't get it out of my head. If you saw the movie, you should definetly buy this, I don't know how you couldn't. If you haven't seen the movie, buy it and you will be in the movie theater a week afterwards. The Kronos Quartet adds the incredibly volatile sound of violins to Clint Mansell's incredible blend of tweaked out beats. This is one of the best CD's I have ever purchased, the movie was probably the best I have ever seen, and I bought the book and hope to have a chance to read it soon. If you liked the movie or if you just want to hear some incredible instrumental music, buy this CD. It has no lyrics, the only lyrics are the ones that you hear in your head if you've already seen the movie, because it causes a vivid picture of each scene to rise up within your mind. It progress from foreshadowing, lighter music(Summer) to very heavy, powerful music( fall, winter, etc.). Definetly worth the money, go for it.
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on October 1, 2002
As you can see below, I already wrote a review for this soundtrack. However, after seeing both One Hour Photo and the trailer for Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers, I had to make a short addition to what I already said. Mainly, the main theme from this soundtrack (which pops up in almost every track, including Summer Overture, Winter Overture, and perhaps best in Lux Aeterna) is used in BOTH of these movies. Perhaps that is the biggest compliment that can be given to Clint Mansell and the Kronos Quartet. How often is it that a score is so brilliant that it is used in two films (one of which is part of the biggest epic trilogy in history) only two years after the original movie it was written for comes out? That has never happened.
This is the most emotionally powerful score in history. Peter Jackson knows this, John Williams knows this, anyone who has heard it cannot fail to know this. You need this music.
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on February 20, 2001
I just recieved this disc in the mail. I'm already in love with it! To tell you the truth, I haven't even seen the movie, but if it's half as good as the CD, then I'm in for a treat.
My favroite track is #31 "Meltdown". It shows such raw, emotional power, that you can't help but be stunned. Other highlights are "Lux Aeterna", "Marion Barfs", "The Beginning of the End", and "Summer Overture" to name only a few.
I enjoy music that shows emotion. And Clint Mansell's score is powerful, grating, edgy, and nerve-racking. I enjoy it immensely. A very good point of the CD is that it gets progressivly darker as it goes on. "Summer Overture" isn't all too cheery, but it holds a glimmer of hope. And by "Meltdown", you've been hurled into a world of nervous breakdowns, schizophrnia and catatonia. Or at least that's how I envision it.
Definitly worth the money even if you haven't seen the film. It's definitly the most powerful score I've ever listened to. And one of the most beautiful.
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on August 16, 2003
I give it a generous 4 stars because yes, I DO like this music very much. However, they left out arguably the MOST IMPORTANT piece...the "warm up" of Kronos Quartet that can be heard in the beginning of the movie when Harry goes home to take his mom's television. They later play that when Ty meets Brody.
It's totally integral to the movie. Without it, the CD is not a true reflection of what the movie represents. At least, that's the way I see it.
In addition, I think the music in the film is more enjoyable than simply hearing it on CD without the visuals.
However, this CD does not contain any more music than you hear in the film. This is not the CD to Gattaca, where there are full orchestrations. Requiem for a Dream CD contains "snippets" as short as those you hear in the film.
Enjoyable, although a bit lacking unfortunately.