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Captive by Lorne Balfe (Review)

posted Nov 5, 2015, 8:24 PM by Kaya Savas

Captive is an interesting film in its basic premise. Sadly it’s about some woman pushing her religious agenda, and the film ended up being more religious fodder for the real self-help book also featured in the film. So in a nutshell the film tries to take this story of a hostage situation and tell a story of faith and redemption. When you look at it simply in those terms and ignore the rest of the film’s agenda, you can start to focus on Lorne Balfe’s carefully crafted score. Lorne takes an ambient approach here and the result is something that feels different than what we’ve heard from him before yet still with some of his signature stylings.

Captive as a whole is a very decent score, and I was very surprised at how well Balfe found this perfect balance between ambience and slight melodic structure. The music has more of a shape in certain areas than others. For instance “Fulton County” is a great track that builds momentum and slight tension without going overboard. In fact the structure of that particular track reminded me of Lorne’s Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 score merely in shape and structure. The rest of the score attempts to humanize the characters and of course paint this path to redemption. The score does what it can without calling too much attention to itself, and it’s nice to hear the score actually working. We get a nice meaty 10-min track to close everything up in the final act. I feel like the music could have delivered more in terms of intensity to drive up the stakes, because as it is the music echoes a pretty docile journey where a sense of real danger never shows itself.

Captive is a real treat for Balfe fans as it shows him in a more restrained and textural form that plays more in the line of ambient scoring. I found it more in style to how Lorne approached The Driver. There is melodic structure in certain areas, but the more shapeless tracks actually become pretty engaging. There seems to be a lack of true conflict and emotional gravitas, but the story being told will hold you as long as you overlook the religious overtones being pushed.