The Boy Soundtrack Review: This is a review of the film score The Boy by Bear McCreary.
At a glance:
Geek Score: 83.3
Total Minutes Of Excellence: 8.6
Album Excellence: 18.8
The Boy AKA The Inhabitant is a 2016 American horror film directed by William Brent Bell and starring Lauren Cohan, Rupert Evans and Jim Norton. A young American named Greta (Lauren Cohan) takes a job as a nanny for an 8-year-old boy in a remote English village. To her surprise, Greta learns that the child of her new employers is a life-size doll. They care for the doll as if it was human, which helps the couple to cope with the death of their own son 20 years earlier. When Greta violates a list of strict rules, a series of disturbing and inexplicable events bring her worst fears to life, leading her to believe that the doll is alive. The score is composed by Bear McCreary.
I don’t know about you, but I always found dolls to be scary, although they never became all Chucky on me. Bear McCreary is opening the year with two horror scores, the first one being The Forest and now this one. I’m excited even though I wish The Forest was a little bit scarier. The score opens with ‘The Boy Main Title’ and I have to say the opening few seconds are very nice, almost too nice, but then the music takes a slight dark turn. It’s a lovely piano theme, haunting, but quite subtle as well. You won’t find any scares here, but rather a prelude for what’s to come. It sets up the film and score nicely. Cues like ‘Meeting Brahms’ and ‘The Crying Doll’ are very sophisticated sounding, very classy and very depressive. They are dark, but they are not scary, just lingering, waiting for the right moment to pounce and that moment is ‘The Attic’ which is definitely taking us into a much scarier territory. I love this territory and McCreary likes it here as well, I can tell. The music is not over-the-top scary, but rather living on the edge so you never know which way it goes. It’s exciting. The second part takes a bit of the fun away though with a more action-driven feel to it. It reminds me of McCreary a few years ago when he scored a lot for television like Battlestar Galactica.
There are many ways to score a horror, but as egocentric as I am, I want it to be scored in such a way that it cater to my personal taste. This is good, but I just feel it can be better. I like the piano theme and I like the darkness that linger over it, but I just can’t put myself into the horror which is what I love to do. I just can’t bring myself to completely fall into the “trance” as I like to call it, the place where I am totally immersed into a score. It happens when the music really clicks with me, but sadly this doesn’t. It’s still a good score, very good even, just not something that lives up to my expectations.
1. The Boy Main Title
8. Following Rules