Soundtrack Review: Maleficent

Soundtrack Review: Maleficent

Maleficent Soundtrack Review: This is a review of the film score Maleficent by James Newton Howard.

At a glance:

22 tracks
68 minutes of score
Geek Score: 93.6
Total Minutes Of Excellence: 58.72
Album Excellence: 86%
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How are the scores calculated and what does it mean?

Maleficent is a welcome return or should I say collaboration between Disney and James Newton Howard. It’s been a long time coming and usually the result is spectacular. It opens in spectacular fashion with ‘Maleficent Suite’ which starts mysterious and brooding but then opens up in glorious fashion. If this is a taste of what’s to come, I have to say that James Newton Howard is back with a score that could very well be the best he has ever created. Currently I hold “The Last Airbender” as his number one solo score and I can really feel its presence in the opening cue.

There are themes aplenty here, but my favorite one is perhaps found in ‘Maleficent Flies’ around 1:35 with the beautiful choral piece before going into a very bittersweet section. What is important to note here is that melody and themes is back and there’s lots of choral and orchestral moment to wow you throughout the score. It feels good, it feels really great actually to have scores like these in the middle of the Zimmer revolution. The battle cry factor is high with bombastic action cues like ‘Battle Of The Moors’ and ‘Path Of Destruction’ and it sounds terrific. A special mention to ‘Maleficent Is Captured’ an over-the-top awesome action cue with high jinks and themery while being bombastic, but not going all Zimmer either. It’s brilliant!

Maleficent is an incredibly strong score and will possibly be on some people’s top 10 list at the end of the year. The biggest criticism I have is that the score isn’t brilliant from start to finish. I was honestly expecting that after listening to the samples, but sadly I was mistaken. There are some cues I can happily remove for a better listening experience and that’s a shame. Other than that, Maleficent is really James Newton Howard back in top form for the most part. I feel that this score eclipses his Snow White score for example, but is never close to touching “The Last Airbender”. It’s a great score that should be in everyone’s collection.

1. Maleficent Suite
2. Welcome To The Moors
3. Maleficent Flies
4. Battle Of The Moors
8. The Christening
9. Prince Phillip
10. The Spindle’s Power
11. You Could Live Here Now
12. Path Of Destruction
13. Aurora In Faerieland
14. The Wall Defends Itself
15. The Curse Won’t Reverse
17. The Army Dances
18. Phillip’s Kiss
20. True Love’s Kiss
21. Maleficent Is Captured
22. The Queen Of Faerieland

GD Star Rating
Soundtrack Review: Maleficent, 9.0 out of 10 based on 29 ratings


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