Annal: 2000 Academy Award® for Achievement in Music (Original Score)

Results of the Academy Award® in the year 2000.

Album:The Red Violin: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack

The Red Violin: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack

John Corigliano

Normally we think of a musical instrument as a passive object in the service of a performing artist. But what if that instrument is itself a work of art, containing the secrets of the various owners through whose hands it has passed over the centuries? That’s the premise behind this intriguing film by François Girard (director of 32 Short Films About Glenn Gould). It traces the story of a legendary violin (thought to be possessed by an immortal soul) from its birth in 17th-century Italy through Mozart’s Vienna, Victorian England, and revolutionary China to…

Album:American Beauty: Music from the Motion Picture

American Beauty: Music from the Motion Picture

Thomas Newman, Various Artists

What’s the soundtrack for suburbia gone awry? Perhaps it’s American Beauty—the music for the dark Sam Mendes-directed flick starring Kevin Spacey and Annette Bening. With its mix of classic and indie rock, the disc seems to reflect something for everyone (or at least those found in middle America). Bobby Darin’s “Don’t Rain on My Parade” is the epitome of unhip, Free’s “All Right Now” is a classic rock anthem we’ve heard way too many times, and Peggy Lee’s “Bali Ha’i” is vintage exotica at its best. But then there are some surprises: Elliott Smith’s…

Album:Angela's Ashes: Music From The Motion Picture

Angela's Ashes: Music From The Motion Picture

John Williams

Given that John Williams has his pick of much of the $80-million, thrill-packed boilerplate that comes clanging out of Hollywood every summer and fall, it’s especially noteworthy (and often gratifying) when he doesn’t exercise his option. In scoring Alan Parker’s adaptation of Frank McCourt’s Pulitzer-winning memoirs of his dire Irish upbringing in the 1930s and ‘40s, Williams has produced a graceful, autumnal work of compelling, though decidedly delicate, emotional power. Using spare piano and solo woodwind melodies filled with longing eloquence, Williams…

Album:The Cider House Rules: Music from the Motion Picture

The Cider House Rules: Music from the Motion Picture

Rachel Portman

With its idyllic New England locales and multiple themes, director Lasse Hallstrom’s version of John Irving’s book presented composer Rachel Portman with some challenging, if deceptively simple, choices. Portman’s main theme (imagine a pastoral Copland waltz), stated by solo piano and then orchestra, sets us firmly in the tranquil Maine countryside, while permutations of it continually shade the film’s various dramatic intentions. It’s a simple, time-honored device, yet one that carries the implicit danger of Repetitive Schmaltz Syndrome. But Portman’s melodic…

Album:The Talented Mr. Ripley: Music from the Motion Picture

The Talented Mr. Ripley: Music from the Motion Picture

Gabriel Yared

In The Talented Mr. Ripley, Tom Ripley (Matt Damon) becomes a master at taking on another’s identity, pretty much the same thing he does on the film’s soundtrack. Here, the actor does his best to croon like Chet Baker on “My Funny Valentine.” Damon lacks the vocal cords to really pull the standard off, but it’s still a noteworthy effort. The rest of this soundtrack is a mix of vintage jazz (exceptional cuts by Charlie Parker, Miles Davis, and Dizzy Gillespie), Sinead O’Connor’s mystical “A Lullaby for Cain,” and a handful of bop tunes played by the Guy…

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