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Dark Waves by Alexander Cimini (Review)

posted Sep 21, 2016, 4:31 PM by Kaya Savas

Dark Waves comes to us from Italy where it’s known as Bellerofonte. The movie is a dark fairytale with horror elements that blends mythology of the sea with a world of pirates, ghosts, monsters and more. Yeah, it’s a bit of a trip. The movie executes its story like a soap opera, so it’s very melodramatic. The score comes from Alexander Cimini who did a very impressive job on the film Red Krokodil. This time around Cimini echoes the sounds of Ennio Morricone for a score that is as overdramatic as the film itself.

It’s really tough to describe this film let alone help understand how the music works in context with the picture. While the term "over the top" can be used to describe everything about this film and score, it’s not necessarily a negative thing always. Cimini does an excellent job of making a score that sounds part fairytale and part soap opera. The vocals mixed in with the lush string arrangements definitely give the score a Morricone vibe at times, which isn’t bad. But it’s immediately where my mind went. It was difficult to get emotionally invested mainly because the material can be laid on pretty thick from start to finish. By the end, the weeping strings and mournful vocals wear thin and you’re ready for this to wrap up. The big highlight of the album is a concert suite of the music included that's nearly 9min long. It’s there where you get to hear Cimini’s talents as a melodic film music writer. Unfortunately the music written to picture didn't carry that same organic emotional current.

Dark Waves is surely something. An Italian horror pirate fairytale, so enter at your own risk. The film mistakes creativity for quality storytelling. It along with the score tries to build a mythical and romantic world, but it’s so over the top that it prevents the audience from connecting with it much. Stylistically the Morricone homages work for the most part, but wear thin by the end of the narrative. The real delight is hearing Alexander Cimini work his magic in a long concert suite, included on the album. It shows a composer who was bound by the picture and all the forced stylings of it, but once freed from that picture the music actually took on some real organic emotional flair.