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Ghosts of the Deep South...
on May 7, 2005
If anyone needed to be reminded of the importance music can have on the emotional and contextual impact of a movie, they would only need listen to this soundtrack after seeing the film that inspired it.
An ocean of ink has been used to vilify the sloppy obviousness of the script, the ham-handed direction, and the disservice done in the adaptation of Nelson deMille's military-based thriller. Nearly most of its shortcomings, however, are truly redeemed by a brooding, chilling score by Carter Burwell that is so damn good, it seems like it belongs in another film.
But the watershed moments come courtesy the stylings of Greg Hale Jones, who sampled Library of Congress recordings of Black spirituals, field songs, children's patty-cake style cadences ("She Began To Lie") and mixed them with synthesizer and electronic drum lines that effectively underscore and highlight the film's themes of murder, betrayal, dishonor and retribution so much better than the script; like ghosts from the past of the Deep South that constantly permeate and haunt the lives of its native sons and daughters, and most especially throughout the events that take place in the film.
The result is so memorably effective, you're almost better off listening to it while reading the source material in lieu of watching the movie. Absolutely one of the most underrated scores of the last decade (equalled only by the remarkable RAVENOUS score by Michael Nyman and Damon Albarn.)