James Horner has often contributed his most stirring music to small-scale human dramas, and 1989's Dad is no exception -- a warm and tender score notable for its appealingly simple arrangements, it remains Horner's most genuinely affecting effort. Eschewing the thick synthesizers and thudding rhythms for which Horner is so often maligned, Dad employs electronics and strings with the utmost caution, instead favoring piano and woodwinds to create a sensitive but never sentimental evocation of family life. Horner's melodies are heartfelt and original -- the self-cannibalization that hampers so many of his scores is not an issue here, which is somewhat ironic given that one can't help but wish he'd return to this kind of work more often.
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AllMusic Review by Jason Ankeny