Perfect for anyone fond of grand, sweeping music from large-scale film romances based on classic sources (Shakespeare, Jane Austen, and the Bronte sisters, for the most part, though there's a nod to The English Patient and to Thomas Hardy). Conductor Kenneth Alwyn takes the COPP through their paces on selections that take their inspiration from many times and places, ranging from mediaeval music to contemporary orchestral ensemble writing -- this does result, mind you, in the Nino Rota suite from Romeo And Juliet sounding rather confused at times. Particularly striking are Patrick Doyle's contributions from Much Ado About Nothing and Hamlet (the album provides a chance to contrast the latter against Ennio Morricone's main theme from the Franco Zeffirelli version). Overall, despite being an album of score excerpt remakes, Cinema's Classic Romances is a worthy set that provides yet more ammunition for the argument that film underscore should be accepted in classical circles.
AllMusic Review by Steven McDonald