Friday, July 8, 2016

Score Sample: Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country

When it comes to Star Trek the movie franchise has a pretty impressive legacy. Jerry Goldsmith knocked it out of the park with Star Trek: The Motion Picture and followed it with the excellent score to The Final Frontier a decade later. In between James Horner brought us to tears with The Wrath of Khan and to thrills with The Search for Spock. Now we have Michael Giacchino giving us top notch scores for Star Trek (2009) and Star Trek into Darkness.

But there have been a couple of other composers who got to tackle a single movie. They tend to get lost in the shuffle, and I wanted to spotlight the work of one of them today: Cliff Eidelman and his music for Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country. His score is much different from the ones that preceded it. Instead of starting with a bombastic fanfare he gives us a dark brooding opening theme that builds and builds in intensity until it erupts into a barrage of notes at the end. it does a great job of setting us up for the darker movie we had coming our way. But I also want to share Eidelman's cue Sign Off which acts as a wonderful farewell to the cast. The heroic theme plays as each cast member's signature appears on the screen before erupting into the classic Star Trek theme for Shatner's name. Eidelman composed one of the best scores of the series, and deserves some recognition for it. So please enjoy two samples, the Overture and the Sign Off cue from Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country.


Sign Off


  1. Nice mix of originality and nods to the past in the score. I always thought the title of VI was a curious one. By "the undiscovered country," Hamlet means death after all.

    1. Yeah he did a really fine job with this one. Not only did he reference the original theme quite a few times, but he also used James Horner's Spock theme as inspiration for his Spock theme. It could almost be a variant of it.