Lady in the Water/James Newton Howard

July 15, 2006

Lady In The Water


James Newton Howard


Universal provides excellent service to me in terms of getting the soundtracks before they or the movie are released. This is a blessing, as well as a problem in that short of being sent a copy of the movie with the release there is no way I can see the movie until the release date which is a week away. To truly evaluate, seeing the movie with the soundtrack, and then listening to it as a stand alone experience is the best way. Having said that, Lady In The Water, as a stand alone experience is recommended. The last JNH release, Freedomland, was not a favorite of mine. Since the review it has not graced the inside of any of my cd players and likely will not for sometime. Lady in The Water will take its place with all the other Shyamalan/Howard collaborations, this being the 5th. All of them are recommended budget permitting of course. For those of you who are not familiar they are Unbreakable, The Sixth Sense, Signs, and The Village. From the press release that came with the CD the story came from one that Shymalan told to his children. The very condensed story is one of an apartment manager who finds a nymph hiding beneath the swimming pool in the complex. The people in the apartment help to send her back in spite of other creatures who have their own ideas! It is a Warner Brothers Picture starring Paul “Sideways” Giamatti and Bryce Dallas Howard. It is written, produced, and directed by M. Night Shyamalan.

Right from the beginning of “Prologue” the eerie suspense begins! I assume that this first track is the introduction of the film. Listen for the chorus and the slow piano buildup starting soft and then louder and more frantic. In “The Party” you will hear the first of several references to Signs, that frantic Herrmann style violin phrase we all enjoy so much! “Charades” too has a definite reference to Signs again although this cool track has its own unique properties as well. “Ripples In The Pool” could have very easily been included on one of these enviromental cd’s designed to calm you down or put you to sleep. “Walkie Talkie” conveys the frantic build it up suspense that Howard can write and convey to the film so well without having to go loud, louder, loudest where you have to turn the volume down.”The Great Eatlon” is another excellent suspense track building up to another cool climax/crescendo. “End Titles” is a fitting climax to an overall good soundtrack from Howard.

In addition to the twelve OST tracks, there are four Dylan compositions. While they are not sung by Bob they are some of his more popular songs and the younger generation will appreciate them I’m sure. My 58 year old ears cannot listen to this type of source material for any length of time. I am not putting the music down it is just not for my ears! The official release of the soundtrack is set for July 18th. Before you and I go and see the movie check out the soundtrack first and then listen for how it is included. You can also listen for what was not included too! Another topic to talk about sometime.


One Response to “Lady in the Water/James Newton Howard”

  1. Hey there; I follow your website through rssfeeds, and just thought I’d tell you–good work. The soundtrack world is often considered a lost art, but it is a wonderful one!

    I was curious though–being a soundtrack myself–how you were able to strike up a deal with Universal to get a pre-release of certain soundtracks.

    I’m trying to do something similar, so if you could offer any tips at all, I’d appreciate it very much.

    Thanks. Have a great day.

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