Deepwater Horizon Soundtrack Review: This is a review of the film score Deepwater Horizon by Steve Jablonsky.
At a glance:
Geek Score: 87.6
Total Minutes Of Excellence: 21.9
Album Excellence: 37.8%
Deepwater Horizon is a 2016 American biopic disaster film directed by Peter Berg and starring Mark Wahlberg, Kurt Russell & Douglas M. Griffin. It is based on the 2010 Deepwater Horizon explosion and oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. On April 20, 2010, the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig explodes in the Gulf of Mexico, igniting a massive fireball that kills several crew members. Chief electronics technician Mike Williams (Mark Wahlberg) and his colleagues find themselves fighting for survival as the heat and the flames become stifling and overwhelming. Banding together, the co-workers must use their wits to make it out alive amid all the chaos. The score is composed by Steve Jablonsky.
I’ve heard one or two things about this score. One thing’s for certain, most reviewers hated it and it is near the bottom of the critics chart for 2016. That doesn’t scare me though because I have a sneaking feeling that all those critics could be wrong and it wouldn’t be the first time. I think it’s all about the expectations and usually Jablonsky has a problem going in. Not with me though, some of his music is great and I hope this is the case with Deepwater Horizon. The score opens with ‘Taming The Dinosaurs’ a lovely little “power” theme, kind of retro sounding. It reminds me a bit of his score for “Pain & Gain” which had it’s moments. This cue has a softness to it, it has a lot of heart. As you would expect from Jablonsky it is highly reliant on electronic music, but as long as you are OK with that, you shouldn’t have a problem. ‘The Rig’ seems to use the same theme, but in a darker way. Lots of ostinato and slow build up. This is definitely a more sinister feel to it than the opening. I expect most of the score will have dark undertones. I’m really enjoying the opening two cues. Minimalistic but evocative.
Now it is not so typical for Jablonsky to dwell into the darker ambient side of things. He did so partly in “Lone Survivor” but this is taking it to a new level. ‘The Monster’ for example, the pulsating electronic “growl” sounds that keep building up and repeating, is something I wouldn’t normally expect from Jablonsky. Not sure I love it though, but it’s interesting. This is the crux of the score though, the one thing you’ll find in abundance with one exception, and that’s the final cie ‘Home’. I can see why it doesn’t score high with most of the critics. This is a score that would please the Reznor & Ross crowd. I haven’t been a fan in the past, but this isn’t bad, not bad at all. More interesting than fantastic, but I see myself having some random listens to this in the future.
1. Taming The Dinosaurs
2. The Rig
9. Stop The Crane
12. Roll Call