Joseph Kosma

La Grande Illusion (Film Score)

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The original score to Jean Renoir's classic 1937 film epic La Grande Illusion is a standard for cinema soundtracks of the era. Kosma's stark, dramatic sonic evocation of World War I France is a study in close harmony, dissonance, and brilliant if moody dynamics. War songs from the era -- "It's a Long Way to Tipperary" as well as popular café numbers such as "Si Tu Veux Margueritte" -- are woven between original titles, bits of film dialogue, incidental music, and compositions. The editing job by the Soundtrack Factory leaves a little to be desired, but the effect is nonetheless riveting.

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