Annal: 2001 Anthony Asquith Award for Achievement in Film Music

Results of the Anthony Asquith Award in the year 2001.

Album:Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack

Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack

Tan Dun

The classical works of Tan Dun typically fuse compositional elements from the East and the West, but for his soundtrack to Ang Lee’s Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, musical cultures aren’t so much blurred as coexistent side-by-side. While the magical martial arts film doesn’t boast music as stunning as its visuals, this soundtrack is still beautiful and elegant, a perfect complement to the movie’s mysticism. Just don’t expect epic, John Williams-inspired bombast here. On “A Wedding Interrupted,” the riveting brass and string section introduction segues…

Album:Almost Famous: Music from the Motion Picture

Almost Famous: Music from the Motion Picture

Nancy Wilson

Writer-director Cameron Crowe (Jerry Maguire, Say Anything, Singles) was a teenager when Rolling Stone magazine sent him out to write cover stories in the 1970s. Nearly 30 years later, Crowe tells the tale in satisfying fashion and extensive detail with Almost Famous, accompanied by a soundtrack that accurately reflects the time of his trial by fire. Led Zeppelin have never before licensed a performance to a soundtrack, so “That’s the Way” earns the distinction. A live version of Lou Reed’s “Waiting for the Man” performed by…

Album:Billy Elliot: Music from the Motion Picture

Billy Elliot: Music from the Motion Picture

Various Artists

In a movie all about contrast, a unifying element keeping the emotional content together is essential. That’s achieved by a specific method of song placement. When we see Billy joyously losing himself to the rhythms of “Children of the Revolution”, it is not just a snatch of music bridging scenes. The movie is a modern musical, and these songs have to speak literally (as well as emotionally), with lyrics that explain what no one is actually saying. A group of Marc Bolan’s classics is therefore a stroke of genius as opposed to having new songs written. The other…

Album:Gladiator: Music from the Motion Picture

Gladiator: Music from the Motion Picture

Hans Zimmer, Lisa Gerrard

Most modern Hollywood films have musical “temp tracks” laid in as they’re edited, usually classical standards or music from other soundtracks that helps shape the dramatic and emotional intentions of works in progress. Sometimes these temp tracks become the score (as in “2001”), but more often they serve as a template for the film’s eventual scorer. That said, we’ll boldly climb out on a limb and opine that director Ridley Scott was listening to a whole lot of Holst’s The Planets as he was cobbling together his modern gladiator epic. Credit Hans Zimmer for…

Album:O Brother, Where Art Thou?: Original Soundtrack

O Brother, Where Art Thou?: Original Soundtrack

T-Bone Burnett, Various Artists

The best soundtracks are like movies for the ears, and O Brother, Where Art Thou? joins the likes of Saturday Night Fever and The Harder They Come as cinematic pinnacles of song. The music from the Coen brothers’ Depression-era film taps into the source from which the purest strains of country, blues, bluegrass, folk, and gospel music flow. Producer T Bone Burnett enlists the voices of Alison Krauss, Gillian Welch, Emmylou Harris, Ralph Stanley, and kindred spirits for performances of traditional material, in arrangements that are either a…

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