The Woman In Black 2 The Angel Of Death Soundtrack Review: This is a review of the film score The Woman In Black 2 The Angel Of Death by Marco Beltrami, Brandon Roberts and Marcus Trumpp.
At a glance:
39 minutes of score
Geek Score: 83.1
Total Minutes Of Excellence: 10.27
Album Excellence: 26%
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The Woman In Black from 2012 was a creepy movie about a haunted place, a haunted house where the mysterious woman in black resided. The score by Marco Beltrami was equally creepy and it quickly became a favorite of mine. The sequel which is premiering in January is set 40 years after the original haunting and the Eel Marsh House isn’t getting any less creepy. This time there’s a bunch of people including children evacuated from WWII London that arrives at the house. There’s a different director in Tom Harper, but the score is still scored by Marco Beltrami, but it’s credited to two other composers as well, Brandon Roberts and Marcus Trumpp. Trumpp is a well-known collaborator with Beltrami in the past, but Brandon Roberts is a new name for me. I have no idea how much Beltrami was involved, but the PR message from Varese Sarabande suggests it was only him. Perhaps the two other names are there for contractual reasons or they did some additional music? Beltrami says “Musically, we built upon the score for Woman In Black. I had the opportunity to collaborate with Brandon Roberts and Marcus Trumpp, who added a fresh take to the creative process.”. So there you have it.
Let the creepiness begin! And does it! ‘Jennet Humfrye Lost Her Baby’ features extremely scary chanting by two little girls with and unnerving nursery rhyme full of death. ‘Angel Of Death’ sound familiar, because it plays on the familiar theme to the woman in black from the original movie. The woman in black has an overwhelming presence, a bit of religious chanting as well, and a subtle but “big” theme in the way that it sounds. It is not a theme I will probably remember. I just had a sneak listen to the original before I started this one. There are some new themes as well starting with ‘Eve’s Theme’. It’s a subtle theme, feels a bit alone and depressed in the beginning, perhaps like the Eve character? It gains some power around 1:25 in, giving a hint that she’s not someone you mess with. Another good theme, but not remarkable. ‘Harry’s Theme’ is to me one of sad destiny. It feels like poor Harry is doomed already.
So far, apart from the opening cue, there hasn’t been many scares, mostly decent themes, but since they are only decent I want to get back to the scary stuff. ‘First Night’ is just what I needed. It starts with a big bang and keeps on the heavy percussion in a steady rhythm with some eerie strings. Beware the first real scare soon with a scream as part of the music. Then it goes into Wojciech Kilar type horror motif for a little while. It get’s decidedly more violent in the second part of the cue. ‘Harry On The Causeway’ is trying to stir up some scares with some chanting, but it’s more like a dark cue from the Harry Potter series of scores, and not scary at all unfortunately. ‘It wasn’t your fault’ is also trying to scary a bit with shrieking violins and some low humming, but still I don’t feel scared. ‘Looking For Edward’ made me jump at that explosive beginning and it kept me on my toes all the way through the cue. I also like the ending of ‘Locked In The Nursery’ which is Beltrami in action horror mode. The most interesting cue must be ‘Under The Causeway’. It has a distinct sound not yet touched upon by this score, a sort of industrial feel to it. A little muffled, yet very powerful, the small violin motif does well. It’s actually a bit reminiscent of The Dark Knight for some reason. The sound maybe? I love it though and there’s like scraping metal sound in the middle that sounds like screaming. The interesting percussion makes me think of what Beltrami said about this score. He made some percussive sounds from artillery shells since this is set in World War II. Maybe the percussions were not used for this cue, but I feel it’s changed somehow, more like a WW2 action cue with horror elements.
It feels like a sequel score, but somehow less exciting that the original. If I listened to this one first, I would probably say that the original is less exciting than it’s sequel score. I got some scares, but not enough, I got some themes, none of them great but this is still a very good score, and Beltrami opens the year very strong.
1. Jennet Humfrye Lost Her Baby
6. First Night
14. Looking For Edward
16. Locked In The Nursery
17. Under The Causeway