Godzilla Soundtrack Review - Mania.com

Soundtrack Review

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  • Composed By: Alexandre Desplat
  • Distributor: WaterTower Music
  • Original Year of Release: 2014
  • Series:

Godzilla Soundtrack Review

Up from the depths

By Robert T. Trate     May 23, 2014
Source: Mania.com

Godzilla Soundtrack by Alexandre Desplat
© WaterTower Music
I really do need to hang my head in shame. When I picked up the Godzilla Soundtrack, I had no clue who Alexandre Desplat was. The Parisian-born composer is only a Golden Globe and Grammy Award winner, as well as a six time Academy Award nominee. I pride myself in being able to pick out certain cues and themes with composers. It wasn’t as if I had never heard Desplat’s work before. The man recently composed Philomena, Zero Dark Thirty, Argo, The Monuments Men and The Grand Budapest Hotel, to say nothing about finishing out the last two-part Harry Potter films. Perhaps that is where Desplat’s brilliance lies. It is easy now to pick out a John Williams or Danny Elfman score. If one looks at their choice of films it is easy to pick up on their movies, too. There is very little in common with Desplat’s recent work and that of Godzilla. The one note they do have in common is the sympathetic tone to everything involved. If you can believe it, it exists here in Godzilla as well. 

A Godzilla Soundtrack has to be as grand as the beastie involved. Yet, what can be so easily forgotten are the smaller moments. The tones set before the destruction. The opening title track, “Godzilla!”, sets an incredible pace for what is about to happen. In listening, without seeing the film, I was taken to a far-off island in the Pacific and the fear of Godzilla was instilled in me. In watching the opening titles with the piece, Desplat sets a rich history for the film. All this happened before and it will happen again, right before our eyes. 

In listening to the entire score, I found that it did borrow from some of the great scores of the past. Desplat’s “Back to Janjira” set a pace that was reminiscent of John Williams’ Jaws. The strings work overtime to get there, but it is the woodwind instruments interrupting that transported me back to my Pacific island. This isn’t the tale about a great white shark. This is the tale about the King of Monsters. 

“Following Godzilla” takes you back to the quiet before the storm and then Desplat unleashes his beast of a score with “Golden Gate Chaos”. “Last Shot” is the perfect culmination of all the film’s themes literally playing at a frantic pace and then subduing them for one final punch. Yet, it is “Godzilla’s Victory” that allows you believe the big guy rises again. My absolute favorite track is “Airport Attack” when Desplat put his own spin on the Ligeti Requiem by Gyorgy Ligeti. For me, that piece of music, cinematically, is synonymous with Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey. When the monolith is approached by Moon-Watcher and the requiem begins with its chorus, it sets a mood for all that is known and unknown. Never did I think that moment, or that music, in any film could be different for me. Here in Godzilla, and in the trailer, it complements the mood perfectly. These characters are facing the unknown. The future is uncertain and their lives will never be the same again. The requiem compliments the score and the world inside the film. 

This is a great soundtrack for a summer blockbuster. It pays the proper respect to where Godzilla originated, yet brings something completely fresh to the genre. It looks as if the days of rock-in-roll flavor of the month summer soundtracks are gone. With a score this good, we don’t need them anymore.

The Godzilla track list is as follows:
  1. Godzilla!
  2. Inside The Mines
  3. The Power Plant
  4. To Q Zone
  5. Back to Janjira
  6. Muto Hatch
  7. In The Jungle
  8. The Wave
  9. Airport Attack
  10. Missing Spore
  11. Vegas Aftermath
  12. Ford Rescued
  13. Following Godzilla
  14. Golden Gate Chaos
  15. Let Them Fight
  16. Entering The Nest
  17. Two Against One
  18. Last Shot
  19. Godzilla’s Victory
  20. Back To The Ocean
Sample the music or order the soundtrack on WaterTower Music.com.
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ultrazilla2000 5/24/2014 9:50:33 PM

Good soundtrack!  I especially enjoy #6, Muto Hatch...very chaotic and cool sounding.



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