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Geostorm by Lorne Balfe (Review)

posted Oct 19, 2017, 7:15 PM by Kaya Savas

After many years in production hell, we finally see the release of Geostorm. This disaster epic was actually filmed in 2014 with a 2016 release date slated. But apparently focus group screenings were so bad that they pulled the movie and did about $15 million worth of reshoots that were overseen by Jerry Bruckheimer. Dean Devlin was the original director on the project, and I guess years of working with Roland Emmerich didn’t help much when crafting the movie as he was not invited back for the reshoots. In the midst of all that, the film’s original composer was replaced as well by Lorne Balfe. Pinar Toprak was initially slated to write the score, but in the midst of all the massive changes it was decided to go in a different direction. Geostorm is going to be destroyed by film critics no doubt, but at least Lorne was able to squeeze a pretty entertaining action score out of it that calls back to some of good ol Bruckheimer action films of the 90’s.

I’ll tell you, Trevor Rabin would be proud of this one. It has the feel of Armageddon but with no guitar solos. Lorne puts his approach on the disaster blockbuster with bold melodies and that Bruckheimer feel. This is just pure action done right, so if you came here on a high horse then it’s time to get off. The score has some warm fuzzy tracks at the start that do a good job of giving us an emotional anchor to get our footing before we go into action wonderland. The rest of the story alternates between action set pieces and the more slow build tension scenes in between them. So we do get a nice balance of that full-bodied action writing with a side of “problem solving” music to keep things from every going over the top. In the end, this is just a fun harmless action ride. If you’re complaining of any “missed opportunity” from the film or the score, then you’re barking up the wrong tree.

Geostorm won’t be remembered for much besides its production problems. But thankfully Lorne Balfe was at least able to do a fun throwback score to the decade where I grew up and fell in love with action scoring. The score is filled with great action writing that gets the job done. Lots of big melodic set pieces filled with textures that will remind you of classic 90’s action scores while still feeling contemporary. Geostorm is a decent distraction to get lost in for a bit, and it showcases some Balfe bravado which is always fun.