John Ottman

Cellular [Original Motion Picture Soundtrack]

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After scoring so many lowbrow Hollywood thrillers, it's somewhat inevitable that John Ottman would begin repeating himself -- listening to Cellular, it's difficult to shake the sense that the composer is simply going through the motions, even if the complexity and craftsmanship of his approach remain crystal clear. A dark, mysterious score that accelerates with each successive theme, Cellular boasts a few unique touches, most notably the mobile-phone keypad rhythms that snake in and out of the music, but Ottman is forced to operate in such a limited emotional and stylistic context that there's little here that wouldn't fit just as comfortably in likeminded schlock such as Gothika or Hide and Seek. Ottman's mastery of the suspense score is indisputable -- the question is whether or not he can thrive in other genre environments, and Cellular does absolutely nothing to settle the debate.

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