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The Gunman by Marco Beltrami (Review)

posted May 1, 2015, 12:21 PM by Leo Mayr


There are two kinds of Marco Beltrami scores. The ones I like and the ones I do not like. The Gunman is somewhere in between. After his stunning work on November Man, I had high expectations for this score. These expectations fell somewhat short. Not because the music is bad, but because it is so different.

Where November Man had a beautiful main theme, The Gunman puts us right into the suspenseful “Kinshasa News“, an opening track that builds tension but never bursts into something exciting, instead fading away to a more calm section of music. While we do get nice emotional sections, none of it really stands out. Things start to get exciting in “Village People“ with an intense action sequence that relies heavily on percussion and while this does work for a movie, as a listening experience this is definiteley not everyone‘s cup of tea. After the short action segments, we return to emotional and suspenseful sections that heavily dominate the score. There are some nice moments and a lot of great spy thriller elements (most notably in “Tripwire“) but again, the score remains an average thriller score. There are some gems like “Love Gunman“, so there is definitely some listening value to be found. “Penmanship“ then turns the score into an intense action thriller with a dramatic increase of tension, making it my personal highlight of this album. With “Reunited“ the score finds a beautiful emotional ending that finally gave me a reason to really like this score.

Overall, The Gunman is simply a functional score. There are some sections that really make the experience worthwhile, creating a powerful narrative that makes me look forward to Beltrami‘s next music. (Perhaps someone will even release the score to Seventh Son one day...)