The Monuments Men

This is a score to be listened to on multiple occasions. It's classic and very nostalgic by every definition of the word.
Normandy by Alexandre Desplat on Grooveshark
The film is about a group of men during World War II that were dispatched to rescue and protect various famous monuments when the Nazi invasion was inevitable. Starring George Clooney and Mat Damon, the film boasts of both action and drama as well as a good amount of comedy.  
The composer, Alexandre Desplat, constructed good old fashioned score. The album is scored in a 'tongue and cheek' style while perfectly balanced with action material.
The main theme is an upbeat, optimistic, and quirky marching tune comperable to that of Elmer Bernstein's score for The Great Escape. It's a wonderful reminder of the golden age of film music. The main theme is heard most notably in the cue, Opening Titles, and returns briefly in the form of whistling heard in final album cue, End Credits. A variation on the theme is reprised throughout the score as well.   
The action material is classic orchestral music with suspenseful strings, muted trumpet, and surreal woodwinds supported by a militaristic snare heard in the cues, Champagne, and Ghent Alterpiece.
Other militaristic cues appear throughout the score like, for example the mysterious and suspenseful cue, Deauville.
Opening Titles by Alexandre Desplat on Grooveshark
A mournful solo piano makes up a good amount of the dramatic material supported with a solo Cello. However, melancholic strings also appear (The Letter). Despite that, the score remains hopelessly optimistic.
A carnival-esq cue, Stahl's Chalet, makes a surprise appearance as does a temp track playing the Christmas carol, Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas. 
Overall, this score is a pleasant surprise reminding us of the golden age of film music when monumental scores were made and still loved to this day. Like those, I'm sure this one will remain a constant favorite through the years. It is nostalgia at it's best!
Rating ****

Best Cue(s)
  • Opening Titles
  • Basic Training
  • Normandy
  • End Credits


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