Tulip Fever Soundtrack Review: This is a review of the film score Tulip Fever by Danny Elfman.
At a glance:
Geek Score: 82.2
Total Minutes Of Excellence: 7.7
Album Excellence: 17.9%
Tulip Fever is a 2017 historical drama directed by Justin Chadwick and starring Alicia Vikander, Dane DeHaan & Jack O’Connell. It is based on the 1999 novel of the same name by Deborah Moggach. Set in the Netherlands in the 17th century, during the period of the tulip mania, the film tells the story of an artist (Dane DeHaan) who falls for a married young woman (Alicia Vikander) while he’s commissioned to paint her portrait by her husband (Christoph Waltz). The two invest in the risky tulip market in hopes of building a future together. The score is composed by Danny Elfman.
Recently I’ve been watching more and more historical drama, mostly about war and mayhem though so this might be a little bit different than that. I’m curious though and even though this film doesn’t appease the critics, I might give it a go when it arrives on Netflix on day. Danny Elfman is in the mix for this one, and I’m fascinated to hear his take on a historical love drama like this one. The score opens with a theme for Sophia simply called ‘Sophia’s Theme’. It’s a rather calm but foreboding piece of music, and appears a lot more dramatic, specially when Elfman give the orchestra a spin. Maybe not the most convincing of themes, but I feel it fits this kind of historical drama. I would perhaps want a little more complexity in it, but that’s me. ‘Lost’ fares a bit better in themes department with these long beautiful string passages.
I had some hopes that we were in for a sweeping orchestral drama score, but I think the orchestra is really small in this one, maybe 10-15 players. TO be fair, that didn’t stop Edelman and Jones creating an amazing score for "The Last Of The Mohicans". It’s all how you use it, and melody plays a key part. Melody isn’t very powerful here apart from a couple of cues. Mostly it’s just short passages which might have worked with a stronger more cohesive sound. Those are just a few of the reasons why this score can never be more than just decent for me. I applaud Elfman when he breaks out from the pattern with a more aggressive style in ‘Nailed’, but it’s just not happening. It’s a shame because it had promise with ‘Sophia’s Theme’ and it’s follow-up cue ‘Lost’. It’s a score of almost. Even though ‘The Grand Finale’ starts off great, it goes into all sorts of directions later on in the almost 7 minute cue losing it’s values along the way. Almost good enough. What do you think of the score?
12. Maria’s Theme
14. It’s Done
17. Happy Family