Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Movie Music Musing: The Goldsmith Award - 2016

I've mentioned before that Jerry Goldsmith is my favorite film composer. One of his gifts was the ability to take a really poor film and give it a great musical score. It is easy to lose track of how many times the best part of the film was Goldsmith's music. For a while there he was stuck providing the score to poorly reviewed films like The Final Conflict, Link, Congo and First Knight. Now some of these films had some entertainment value, others were just not worth your time or money. But Goldsmith didn't let that stop him. He had a job to do.

The same things happens these days. Hard working composers get pulled into projects that may look good on paper, but just don't pan out with critics or audiences. Somehow these films inspired the composer and we get a great score out of it. So this year, I'll be presenting these scores with The Goldsmith Award of Excellence.

For 2016, there is one movie that pretty much appeared on every "worst of" list of 2016, Gods of Egypt. This fantasy adventure rubbed critics the wrong way and didn't attract much audience attention. I hear that it is probably perfect for a moving riffing night, so I might give it a chance at some point.

But one element that was actually really entertaining was the score by Marco Beltrami. He crafted music that combined classic Hollywood ancient Egypt style, first made popular in Golden Age classics like The Egyptian and The Ten Commandments, and fused it with a modern sound. In fact it reminds me a quite a bit of Goldsmith's music from the 1999 version of The Mummy. That that is a good thing.

So here is a sample of that score, the winner of the 2016 Goldsmith Award of Excellence - The Coronation from Gods of Egypt.


  1. You have to admire the squad that takes that hill even when it is “the wrong war in the wrong place at the wrong time against the wrong enemy” – a common complaint in Korea and repeated elsewhere since. May I suggest playing the Goldsmith score while reading Congo, which is not a bad book even though the movie was dreadfully saccharine. As for Gods of Egypt…well, I don’t think there is much hope there other than to turn out the lights and listen to Beltrami while trying to forget there ever was a movie.

    1. Yeah I think I could craft my own movie to that music. Beltrami's stuff is pretty inspiring. :)