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Zero Dark Thirty Soundtrack

4.7 out of 5 stars 28 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Soundtrack, December 18, 2012
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Editorial Reviews

For a decade, an elite team of intelligence and military operatives, working in secret across the globe, devoted themselves to a single goal: to find and eliminate Osama bin Laden. Zero Dark Thirty reunites the Oscar® winning team of director-producer Kathryn Bigelow and writer-producer Mark Boal (The Hurt Locker) for the story of history's greatest manhunt for the world's most dangerous man.

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (December 18, 2012)
  • Original Release Date: December 13, 2012
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Soundtrack
  • Label: Madison Gate Records, Inc.
  • Run Time: 0 minutes
  • ASIN: B00AQ8IKFS
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #101,513 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
As this score from Alexandre Desplat is neither bombastic nor feeble, the composer strings together one of 2012's best film scores. The London Symphony Orchestra hums together pieces that emphasize deep bass with a hint of string instruments that make way for unique pieces of music. Juxtaposition is stressed throughout the entire soundtrack as the overlying music creates a dark vibe until Desplat brings in the main musical theme of the score with a wide variety of instruments that makes the score unlike any other. This musical theme, fleshed out with string and harp sounds to an extent quite electronic, but knowing that it came to life through symphonic instruments is the true beauty of it.

Desplat introduces the electro theme, which exerts a Middle-Eastern vibe, yet not as flamboyant as Desplat's 'Argo' film score, in the first track 01. Drive to Embassy. The pounding bass sets the tone for the rest of the score and midway Desplat's theme is introduced. About halfway through the track, Desplat's main theme is introduced, and this theme is evident in about two-thirds of the soundtrack's listings. In my opinion, the composer's decision to exert this theme often makes for a coherent score that does not stray off path. No outliers that disrupt the mood are present and each track feels related in a sense to the other tracks. The string and harp instruments are also used to imprint a sense of resplendence and majesty. The pounding bass would be rather flat without those aspects. Thankfully, the end result is a magnificent and organized musical piece that ranks among Desplat's best work.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I have been waiting for a work by renown French composer Alexandre Desplat that was really notable and worthy of his talent (the final Harry Potter came very close and was quite good) and with his score for Kathryn Bigelow's "Zero Dark Thirty" he has come through. My initial reaction to parts of the score was that this is something John Barry would have done, not faint praise. This is one of the best scores for a film in this broad genre in a long time. Somber and even dark, this is not a light-hearted film; Desplat's music is a solid and complimentary fit. There are serious issues with the film, far beyond the torture scenes which have been blown way out of proportion, it drags, it leaves out or minimizes essential elements of the story while over-selling others and the list goes on, but the score is very, very good. Desplat mixes Middle Eastern motifs without overdoing it and produces a musical background that is tense and at times ominous. The themes are subtle, but he uses several motifs and themes to great effect and gives us a score that works very well on screen and on the soundtrack recording; it is a score that continues to resonate in the memory long after the film is over (note especially "SEALs Take Off") which is one of the signs of a successful score, and that is exactly what this is. Notable performance by the London Symphony Orchestra with solid production values by Sony, but the packaging is just barely adequate.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This is one of the 'darkest' movie soundtracks I've heard. Alexandre's music carry's over to the movies dark theme and character.
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Format: Audio CD
Alexandre Desplat's busy 2012 included two political thrillers set in the Middle East. Argo and Zero Dark Thirty are also top contenders for best picture this year, but which of the two Desplat scores reigns superior in the genre? Definitely Zero Dark Thirty, which showcases Desplat exercising extreme precision in terms of suspense scoring. While I question why Oscar nominees Marco Beltrami and Buck Sanders didn't return to collaborate with Kathryne Bigelow after the best picture winning The Hurt Locker, I cannot dismiss Desplat's excellent execution.

While Argo and Zero Dark Thirty are two different films they do share quite amount of genre similarities. For Argo, which I believe is Desplat's weakest score of the year (but still one of the best overall) he tends to lean heavy on the ethnic sounds and the structure doesn't quite match the editing. Argo's tension and sense of urgency comes directly from its editing. For Zero Dark Thirty you get amazing builds directly from the score, and it's an engrossing listen. He does use some ethnic instruments to establish setting, but it doesn't become the defining aspect of the score. The motifs here are also extremely grounding and ear-catching. I felt an immense amount of character in this score as well, which was what made Beltrami and Sanders' score for The Hurt Locker so memorable. Argo was a more plot-heavy score, which is why I love what Desplat did here much better and why it resonates more. It's an overall engrossing experience that takes the audience on a masterfully executed journey.

Zero Dark Thirty is a fictional political thriller based on actual events. A lot of people are fact checking the film like crazy but need to realize that it's a movie that will take plenty of creative liberties.
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