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Gloria by Lorne Balfe & Sofía Espinosa (Review)

posted Aug 7, 2015, 3:06 PM by Kaya Savas

Gloria is the Spanish-language biopic about Gloria Trevi who has often been labeled as the “Madonna of Mexico”. She rose from poverty to fame only to be embroiled in a massive sex scandal that threatened to erase all of her accomplishments. The film stars Sofía Espinosa who also performs all of the songs in the film, and that are featured on the soundtrack album. And if you still needed more proof of his versatility, Lorne Balfe delivers a very on point if minimal score to thread the journey together.

The songs themselves are Gloria Trevi’s hits sung by actress Sofía Espinosa, and they do dominate the soundscape of this film. Lorne wasn’t involved in the producing of the songs at all, so his work was designed to stand on its own, but sadly we only have 12-minutes of score from this project. The score itself is very minimal but on point, as I said earlier. A simple circling motif opens up and acts as Gloria’s theme. Lorne is able to add textures and craft some builds on top of that groundwork. The emotions are there even if the music is a bit shapeless. I don’t know the circumstance of the project, but it seems Lorne was just brought in to fill gaps and make it “emotional”. If you look at the score as a simple and gentle character portrait, then it does tell you a story of Gloria. In terms of an engaging narrative, there was really no room for him to do that.

Gloria is merely meant to be a dramatic biopic of famous Mexican singer Gloria Trevi’s tumultuous rise to fame. It comes with all the cliches of singer/rockstar biopics, which is also nice that Lorne’s minimal contributions didn’t subscribe to the cliched plot points. It’s a small musical portrait of a woman and shows us Lorne’s gentler side, even if the score never gets a chance to be anything more than that.