'The Incredibles' Soundtrack Reviewed
By Mark Sung Nov 18, 2004, 0:00 GMT
'The Incredibles' soundtrack features the score by composer Michael Giacchino, who's past work includes the TV series Alias and the popular 'Medal of Honor' computer game series. Pixar Studios' latest movie is about a family of superheroes who are forced out of retirement. Although you might have expected a lot of triumphant 'superhero music' on the soundtrack, director Brad Bird instead decided to go in the direction of a 1960's jazz action music style. The most obvious inspirations for the score are John Barry's James Bond scores.
The opening track 'The Glory Days' immediately shows influences from Barry's 'On Her Majesty's Secret Service' theme. The main theme for 'The Incredibles' soundtrack is a short burst of a six key melody which is very similar to a part of the main James Bond theme. Other influences which can be heard throughout the score include 'Mission: Impossible', 'The Man From U.N.C.L.E' and 'Our Man Flint'.
The score is given a lot of character with the jazz music provided by the big band and the action cues provided by the orchestra. As a result of using jazz influences, the score sounds very natural, uncontrived and therefore not ironic unlike this year's 'Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow' score.
However, after you've settled into the first few tracks some of the rest of the score comes across as rather understated and uninspiring. There are some tracks which have nothing memorable about them except for the main theme which at times seems to repeat itself every five seconds or so. Unfortunately there aren't a great variety of themes which are particularly noticeable apart from the simple main theme. The main theme could also become rather annoying after it's repeated for the thousandth time. There are a moments in the score which are very lively and busy, but even these are usually overshadowed by the main theme when it makes an appearance.
The last track 'The Incredits' brings together all the themes of the score and is one of the few tracks which is bursting with energy and charisma.
If you enjoy jazz music in general, you might have more of an appreciation for the score, otherwise the score might sound rather repetitive by the end. It's clear Giacchino has put a lot of love and attention into creating the score, but ultimately the score fails to be engaging and as a result the score never makes a lasting impression.
Considering some of the impresive work Michael Giacchino has done in the past, one might have expected the score to be a little more grand and dynamic for such a superhero movie. Unfortunately the soundtrack for 'The Incredibles' is not really that Incredible.