James Horner

Troy [Music from the Motion Picture]

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Epic films of the summer variety tend to be accompanied by soundtracks that include either forgettable pop songs or a wholly forgettable score; Wolfgang Petersen's Greek popcorn flick Troy has both. Originally composed by Gabriel Yared -- his score was axed after it was deemed too "old-fashioned" at a test screening -- the music that accompanies Achilles and Hector through their many trials and tribulations is predictably reminiscent of Gladiator, incorporating Middle Eastern female vocalists into hypnotic string cues and thunderous percussion over endless action sequences. When replacement composer James Horner isn't mining the Mideast, he's riding into the sunset on a decidedly non-Trojan horse. To his credit, the talented veteran had very little time in which to write and prepare let alone produce Troy, but his take on the Greek legend feels more like a Western, and not a very good one either -- it would be interesting to hear Yared's "old-fashioned" version against this. It's not an awful score, and some of the themes resonate with the subject matter, particularly "The Temple of Poseidon," which blends the two styles successfully, but memorable? No. Also, the inclusion of "Remember Me," a duet between Josh Groban and Tanja Tzarovska, deserves mention, as it is the audio equivalent of the gag reflex.

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