The Magnificent Seven (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)
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The Magnificent Seven (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)
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About the Movie
Director Antoine Fuqua brings his modern vision to a classic story in The Magnificent Seven. With the town of Rose Creek under the deadly control of industrialist Bartholomew Bogue (Peter Sarsgaard), the desperate townspeople, led by Emma Cullen (Haley Bennett), employ protection from seven outlaws, bounty hunters, gamblers and hired guns Sam Chisolm (Denzel Washington), Josh Farraday (Chris Pratt), Goodnight Robicheaux (Ethan Hawke), Jack Horne (Vincent D Onofrio), Billy Rocks (Byung-Hun Lee), Vasquez (Manuel Garcia-Rulfo), and Red Harvest (Martin Sensmeier). As they prepare the town for the violent showdown that they know is coming, these seven mercenaries find themselves fighting for more than money. The Magnificent Seven opens in theaters nationwide on September 23.
About the Music
The score has been composed by James Horner (1953-2015) and completed by Simon Franglen after Horner s death.
Having composed the music for more than 130 film and television productions, including dozens of the most memorable and successful films of the past three decades, James Horner was one of the world s most prolific and celebrated film composers. Horner earned two Academy Awards® and two Golden Globe® Awards for his music from James Cameron s Titanic (Best Original Score and Best Original Song My Heart Will Go On ), eight Academy Award® nominations, five Golden Globe® nominations, and has won six Grammy Awards®. Known for his stylistic diversity, his film credits include Titanic (the largest selling instrumental score album in history, selling more than 27 million copies worldwide), Avatar, A Beautiful Mind, Apollo 13, Braveheart, Legends of the Fall, Glory, Field of Dreams and Star Treks II and III.
Simon Franglen is a Grammy®-winning and Golden Globe®-nominated composer and producer. His credits include four of the top grossing films of all time and six of the top selling albums. He is known for handling complex, demanding scoring projects, in particular the marriage of orchestra and electronica in innovative ways. He received a Grammy Award® for Record of the Year for his production of the smash hit single My Heart Will Go On from James Cameron s Titanic, and received Golden Globe®, Grammy Award® and World Soundtrack Award nominations for his work on Cameron s Avatar.
Top Customer Reviews
Simon Franglen is a longtime collaborator of Horner and he (along with Simon Rhodes) finished preparing Horner's ideas so they could be presented to the director. The director was obviously surprised to have any material at all and gave the green light for Franglen to finish the project based off the available ideas developed by Horner. Who is Franglen in the first place? He has worked with Horner, as well as, numerous other composers in the film industry. Usually you'll find him in the credits as a producer, instrumentalist, and/or arranger. He has worked with Horner on films like "Titanic", "Avatar", "Southpaw", "The Amazing Spider-Man", and "Wolf Totem". What does an "arranger" do? Well, sometimes they don't get the credit they deserve in my opinion. They do quite a bit! Let's say that a composer writes a melody on the piano and wants to use that for a particular scene in a movie. The arranger is the one who takes that piano melody and turns it into something that a larger orchestra can play. They sometimes decide what instruments will be playing what parts, the tempo changes, dynamics, style changes, and other musical "decorations" that will be used. The arranger presents this material to the composer and work continues. Usually, you'll find a strong relationship between composers and arrangers with their work carrying over throughout several projects. Once an arranger can understand the style and creative expectations of a composer, a dependable collaboration between the two can produce some great work.
Obviously, there are some composers who scratch out every detail themselves, but in today's frantic pace in developing movies/TV shows, arrangers help composers move from one project to another quickly. So, how much of this score is actually Horner's? That would be hard to say without comparing Horner's original work (musical sketches) to what we have here. I can tell you, that as a longtime listener of film scores, I definitely can hear James Horner coming through in some of these pieces.
If I were compiling a short list of my favorite scores, the majority of them would be those from Westerns. It's a time period that has fascinated me since I was a kid and the memories I have of watching these films are priceless. Even before I began listening/collecting film scores, the music from these films would carry over into my backyard adventures as a child. "The Magnificent Seven" is one of those classic movie treasures with a score developed by the legendary Elmer Bernstein. The 1960 film was actually based off of one of Japan's highest grossing films ever, "The Seven Samurai" produced in 1954 and directed by Akira Kurosawa. It's a great story and one that should be presented again for a new generation to enjoy. I hope they do it justice and it is one that I will demand life to release me so I can go spend a few hours to enjoy it in the theatre next week. I can imagine that Horner, like any composer, would feel a bit hesitant in trying to develop music for such an iconic classic such as this...especially since Bernstein's score is so popular. Some of you have probably seen the ridicule Marco Beltrami received for "Ben Hur". Knowing that they will face that kind of heat surely isn't something they look forward to. So, what do you do? Recreate the same score...throw in a few musical references...or just develop something entirely new? I would say that this score for "The Magnificent Seven" is in the "develop something new with a few musical references" category.
As an arranger, Simon Franglen knows what instruments to use in order to create a musical landscape for a western. There is no doubt that when listening to this score, you'll find yourself surrounded by the instrumentation and stylistic musical interpretations of that which we typically associate to the days of the six shooter, cowboy boots, and the untamed land. Spanish guitar, darting flute, church bell, and various percussion instruments blend in the score to take you right there. There are pieces that gallop along like "Faraday's Ride" (track 21) and other tension building showdown cues like "Takedown" (track 12). The score surrounds us with the sounds of the wild west but I also find it to be a darker and gritty vision as well. Bernstein's original score was brighter, epic, and very large. Horner & Franglen's score is definitely more ambient at times and less thematic for sure. While the score does have some classic sweeping movements like in "Volcano Springs" (track 4), there seems to be a larger focus on putting a more emotional context in the musical as these gangs of individuals face off. The heroes in the story are probably considered to more anti-hero and the music seems reflect this at times. Pieces like "Street Slaughter" (track 5) and "House of Judgement" (track 24) incorporate vocals that really amp up the visuals of devastation and triumph over evil within their selected moments of the story as well. The inclusion of the vocal pieces (not songs or lyrics...just vocalized notes) really add a lot to the cues.
Your probably wondering if Bernstein's theme is within the score. It is referenced in some pieces like "Lighting the Fuse" (track 3), "Volcano Springs" (track 4), and in a much larger way in "Seven Riders" (track 25). When you do hear it referenced early on in the score, you'll hear the rhythm of the theme expressed mostly through percussion. This percussive treatment of the popular theme is very unique and creative indeed. Sometimes you'll hear a brief portion of the melody come out in the background in a slightly different key but enough to be recognized. Bernstein's theme is treated in a more distinguished way on the last track ("Seven Riders") however with brief but highly recognizable references as the heroes ride off in the distance. I've noticed that the digital version of this score contains Bernstein's original theme as an extra track. The CD version does not contain this.
Don't expect to be listening to a grandiose, sweeping, and classic western score here. In the CD's liner notes, Franglen says that Horner "knew that the language of that older film was not going to work in this modern retelling". It's quite obvious that Franglen kept that vision consistent within this score because it is a darker depiction of the west and this intense battle with overwhelming odds. If I want to listen to the classic score...I'll just put that one on. I'll take this score for what it is. Darker? Yes. But there are moments where Horner captures the heroic side of the old west, as well as, the adventurous. Horner can be found within this music for sure. Take a listen to those echoey trumpets that appear every now an then throughout the score....like in "Horne Sacrifice" (track 22). Doesn't it remind you a little bit of "Star Trek II and III"? Maybe it's just me.
The CD contains 25 tracks with a running time of 1 hour and 17 minutes. The digital version contains the extra Bernstein track of the original theme. There is a 12 page insert that contains photos from the film (mostly Denzel Washington and Chris Pratt), track listings, a note from Simon Franglen, and production credits. The CD is released through Sony Classical.
The score is growing on me with each listen. I did have to suppress my desire to hear a classic western score and enjoy this one as a new take on an iconic story. I have no doubt that the music will fit right into the visuals and emotions of the film's story. Favorite piece? Probably "House of Judgement" (track 24) because of the really great vocal piece added making it a very moving cue indeed. I can't help but to smile when listening to the final "Seven Riders" (25) because of the tribute to Bernstein's theme too.
even at Faraday's ride i think it could have been better that i could enjoy the track more... just the mood goes off too soon... i really hope James Horner could have done all of it.
Willow, A Beautiful Mind, Apollo 13, Glory, and I think even Titanic makes an appearance.
That does NOT bother me. I actually bought this for the James Horner-cues.
What caught my ear is the "Thunderheart" track, while watching "The Magnificent Seven(Remake)." Literally. On the way home, I shopped on Amazon Prime to purchase this score. I won't tell you which track or what scene. If you're a James Horner fan, you'll know what I'm talking about.