Good Performances of Good Music
Zachary S. Houp | Fleetwood, PA USA | 10/31/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This CD is a conglomeration of some of cinema history's Oscar winning film scores, so it is pretty hard to go wrong. Conducted by the venerable John Williams--and with above average attention to his work--the tracks available on this album are fantastic suite renditions performed by the London Symphony Orchestra, who gives us a recording as near perfect as can be.There is a diverse selection of music hear that spans numerous decades, and some of the less recent tracks might not appeal to those of the last decade that film score listeners have come to recognize. Among the more popular tracks are excerpts from Lawrence of Arabia, E.T., The Wizard of Oz, Pocahontas, The Godfather, Dances with Wolves, Beauty and the Beast, Jaws, and Star Wars. The other tracks can be quite appealing, especially such rousing excerpts from Robin Hood, The Best Years of our Lives, the eerie Dream Sequence from Spellbound (though the overture certainly would have been a more pleasent listen), and the recurrent spookiness of Bernard Herrman as exemplified in The Devil and Daniel Webster.All in all, this CD is a welcome addition to any collection. John Williams' works cover most of the important themes from his works (though I do--and always have--found Jaws too redundant for the abundant credit it is given). The three musicals (Oz, Pocahontas, and Beauty and the Beast) are a welcome addition, displaying suites without the hindrance of lyrics, for once. This CD is above adequate with superb performances by the London Symphony orchestra that consistently model the music from the original scores. The selections are great; the music is lovely; the CD is a must for any collection."