Valerian And The City Of A Thousand Planet Soundtrack Review: This is a review of the film score Valerian And The City Of A Thousand Planet by Alexandre Desplat.
At a glance:
Geek Score: 86.9
Total Minutes Of Excellence: 30
Album Excellence: 42.2%
Valerian And The City Of A Thousand Planet is a 2017 French science fiction film directed by Luc Besson and starring Dane DeHaan, Cara Delevingne & Clive Owen. The film is based on the French science fiction comics series Valerian And Laureline. In the 28th century, special operatives Valerian (Dane DeHaan) and Laureline work together to maintain order throughout the human territories. Under assignment from the minister of defense, the duo embarks on a mission to Alpha, an ever-expanding metropolis where diverse species gather to share knowledge and culture. When a dark force threatens the peaceful city, Valerian and Laureline must race against time to identify the menace that also jeopardizes the future of the universe. The score is composed by Alexandre Desplat.
Well, I’m firmly on the Valerian hype train along with a lot of people. I’m a huge fan of the 1997 film The Fifth Element and Besson in general so this could be something very special. When Desplat is in the mood, he can deliver great music for science fiction and fantasy and so my hopes are high that he delivers a great score. It’s usually Eric Serra that has done most of the scoring for Besson films, but I’m sure that Desplat also can come up with something exciting and fun. The opening cue ‘Big Market’ however is definitely not what I hope the score sounds like in general, unless it’s a cartoon marketed at 4-7 year olds. It sounds so forced and simple, doesn’t sound good at all apart from a nice sequence in the second half of the cue. His next cue ‘Bus Attack’ sound a lot better. It has an evil sounding action theme, like the sound of a monster. It’s still not great, and it has to do with timing, percussion and the general feel of weight behind the music. It’s just not there… yet. Still, it’s promising, very promising. I particularly like the few embellishment of flute in between the percussion heavy music.
Wouldn’t it be great if the opening cue was the worst on the score? In fact, it actually is, by a massive country mile. The music seems to go from infancy to grown up phase the further on we go. The fist time I really feel the excitement of science fiction is with ‘Spaceship Chase’. It is very exciting and this is what I had hoped the score would sound like. The first 4 cues are sandwiched in between songs from artists such as David Bowie, Wyclef Jean and Julien Rey, but from cue 14 and onwards it’s all Desplat and all score until the end. It’s lovely how the music opens up with cues like ‘Pearls On Mul’, a space romantic piece, over 7 minutes long. The disappointing opening cue is almost forgotten now as the score comes into it’s own with a mix of lovely lyrical space opera music and exciting action pieces. There’s a nice Valerian theme that you can hear in various cues like ‘Flight Above The Big Market’ and it’s a decent if forgettable theme. Valerian has a lot going for it musically, but it’s also not impressing much. It won’t be a classic any time soon. I expected more, but maybe it will grow on me in the coming years.
11. Spaceship Chase
15. Pearls On Mul
16. Reading The Memo
28. Pearl’s World
30. I Am A Soldier
31. Pearls Power