Even though Charles Fox composed, conducted, and produced Foul Play's musical menagerie, it is the heightened vocals of Barry Manilow that are gleefully extolled. A veteran soundtrack composer, Fox' many musical credits include Barbarella, Nine to Five, and the classic tearjerker The Other Side of the Mountain. Here he provides a detective-like backdrop utilizing frantic orchestration and silky ballads for this romantic comedy starring Chevy Chase and Goldie Hawn. The centerpiece is the sentimental anthem "Ready to Take a Chance Again," showcasing Manilow's escalating vocal zest, resulting in an Academy Award nomination for best original song. "Houseboat," "Love Theme," and "End Title" all play off the main theme, exploring delicate variations using animated strings and horns. The remaining instrumentals range from "Gloria Falls for Trap," a slowly creeping, then hacking, '50s-style police theme, to "Foul Play-Disco," an expected dance creation with a familiar beat frozen in time. Boldly announced on the front cover, "Copacabana" appears on the soundtrack, but it's shorter than the definitive version that Manilow recorded for his Even Now and Greatest Hits albums. The upbeat dance classic garnered a Grammy Award for best male pop vocal performance, and years later became an all-time karaoke favorite.
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AllMusic Review by Craig Curtice