Patrick Doyle had been working primarily as an actor until director Kenneth Branagh hired him to write the score for a new film version of Shakespeare's Henry V. Doyle has been writing film music ever since, but this first attempt is probably still his best work. Conducted by the highly respected Simon Rattle, this music has all the stately grace and emotional power the script demands. Because so much of the film is spent in battle scenes, the CD has a few too many ominously unmelodic tracks. But when Doyle aims to move and inspire his audience, it's hard not to develop a few goosebumps. "Non Nobis, Domine," a choral hymn led by Doyle himself, is a profoundly stirring epilogue to the battle scenes. And the piece which underscores Henry's St. Crispin's Day speech ranks among the most moving melodies in recent film.
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AllMusic Review by Darryl Cater
|Henry V (1989), film score|