See These Eyes of Red, Red like Jungle Burning Bright...

Aug 27, 2009 (Updated Aug 27, 2009)
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Rated a Very Helpful Review

Pros:Score Pieces by Morricone, German Songs, Film Themes, Billy Preston, & David Bowie.

Cons:What Didn't Make It to the Soundtrack Album.

The Bottom Line: The Soundtrack to Inglourious Basterds is an Excellent Compilation Filled with Film Themes, Obscure 1940s German Songs, Modern-Day Pop Songs, & Score Pieced by Ennio Morricone.

Supervised and compiled by Mary Ramos, the soundtrack to Quentin Tarantino's World War II film Inglourious Basterds is a compilation of material featuring music from the film. From obscure German songs from the 1940s to material from the 70s and 80s like Billy Preston and David Bowie. It's mostly an instrumental record a lot of which features score piece from the renowned Italian composer Ennio Morricone. Featuring music from Morricone's work from various Spaghetti westerns Morricone made in the 1960s. While it's not a complete collection of all the music that appears in the film. What Ramos and Tarantino compile for this soundtrack is still worth hearing for fans of the film and of Tarantino's work.

Opening the album is Nick Perito's The Green Leaves Of Summer from the 1960 John Wayne film The Alamo. With a soft, somber strum on an acoustic guitar, it's the swooning sound of a flute with orchestral flourishes of strings and striking pianos that sweeps the track as it plays in the opening credits of the film. From the 1966 Spaghetti Western The Big Gundown by Sergio Sollima is Ennio Morricone's The Verdict. With an eerie piano melody that is followed by acoustic guitar flourishes, straddling drum fills, and a broad, symphonic arrangement that is quintessential Morricone. It's a track that marks the arrival of the film's antagonist Col. Hans Landa (Christoph Waltz) as he is set to interrogate a French diary farmer. From the 1973 Joseph Sargent film White Lightning is Charles Bernstein's title track of the same name. With a throbbing bass line, twangy guitar licks, and slow, hollow beats, it's a tense track that revels in the chilling tone of Landa's interrogation as it also includes twangy sounds in the background.

From the famed 1972 blaxploitation film Slaughter by Jack Starret is the title track by Billy Preston. With its growling guitar riff, the track marks the theme cut for the psychotic, Nazi-hating German Hugo Stiglitz (Til Schweiger). With a chugging rhythm, wailing organs flourishes, and funky guitars, it's a cool song that features the last Preston's soulful vocals as it's a song that is about a man you don't want to mess with. Another track from The Big Gundown is Ennio Morricone's The Surrender (La resa). An intense track with haunting piano melodies, smooth acoustic strums, soft drum cadences, and soothing orchestral flourishes that builds up with operatic voices and arrangements with horns and percussions as it marks the arrival of the Bear Jew (Eli Roth) to kill a Nazi. From the 1965 Spaghetti Western Blood for a Silver Dollar by Giuliano Gemma is Gianni Ferrio's One Silver Dollar (Un Dollaro Bucato) is a soothing, harmonica-driven track with slow, cool flourishes that plays smoothly. Even as it serves as an accompaniment with an accordion to unveil the new life of a young Jewish woman named Shoshanna (Melanie Laurent) that includes a blaring trumpet.

From the 1942 German propaganda film The Great Love by Rolf Hansen is Michael Jary/Bruno Balz song Davon Geht Die Welt Nicht Unter (It's Not The End Of The World) by Zarah Leander. The piano ballad is presented in a rough, recorded version as it's a ballad with a playful sentimentality as it plays in a tavern scene where Nazis celebrate the birth of a soldier's son. Also in the tavern scene is The Man With The Big Sombrero by June Havoc from the obscure 1943 Andrew L. Stone film Hi Diddle Diddle. With its playful, triumphant sound of blaring trumpets and bouncy rhythms that has June Havoc singing in a mixture of English & French as it's a party song. From another obscure German propaganda film is Ich Wollt Ich War Ein Huhn by Lilian Harvey & Willy Fritsch. Also presented in a rough mix, the playful German song features an upbeat rhythm as it is heard in the tavern scene. Next is Jacques Loussier's main theme to the 1968 film Dark of the Sun by Jack Cardiff. With its momentum-building arrangement of piano melodies, thumping rhythms, and a swooning organ as it plays to the sound of the Basterds making plans to crash a film premiere where Adolf Hitler is attending.

From Paul Schrader's 1982 remake of the 1942 Jacques Tourneur horror classic Cat People is the title song by David Bowie and Giorgio Moroder. Though presented in an shortened form, the song with Moroder's haunting synthesizers, Bowie's eerie baritone vocals and creepy lyrics is one of the highlights of the soundtrack. Even as it plays great background music for Shoshana's plan to kill the Nazis at the cinema where the movie will be playing. From the 1970 World War II film Kelly's Heroes by Brian G. Hutton is Lalo Schifrin's Tiger Tank. With its swift string arrangements, pounding beats, blaring horns, it's a track that builds lots of momentum as the Basterds get ready to go kill a bunch of Nazis in a movie theater.

From the 1973 Spaghetti Western Revolver is Ennio Morricone's Un Amico that opens with a melodic, acoustic guitar flourish and somber string arrangements. Playing to a climatic moment near the end of the film, it's a fitting piece that includes a nice snare drum fill, sweeping string arrangements, and wailing organs. The last track is another Morricone score piece in Rabbia e Tarantella for the 1973 Italian film Allonsanfan by Paolo & Vittorio Taviani. Played in the final credits, it's a track that features a galloping melody of pianos and strings along with a pounding timpani as it's a playful track from the much beloved Ennio Morricone.

Not in the soundtrack are various film score pieces from war films and Spaghetti Westerns including pieces by Ennio Morricone. Among the Morricone pieces not in the film's soundtrack but in the film is a cadence drum score from the 1966 Gillo Pontecorvo film La Battaglia di Algeri. Despite some the tracks that didn't make it to the final soundtrack album. The soundtrack to Inglourious Basterds is still a strong album filled with amazing material and score pieces from the film. Fans of Tarantino's soundtrack will enjoy the music that's in the soundtrack along with the pieces by Ennio Morricone who is truly one of cinema's great composers. In the end, the soundtrack to Inglourious Basterds is an excellent soundtrack with its mixture of rock, soul, score pieces, and obscure German songs.

Inglourious Basterds

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