Saturday, November 16, 2013

Spartacus Love Theme

Hauntingly Beautiful

Kirk Douglas Jean Simmons Spartacus movieloversreviews.filminspector.com
Kirk Douglas and Jean Simmons in "Spartacus"

The original score for Spartacus was composed and conducted by six-time Academy Award nominee Alex North. Below is a re-recording by Erich Kunzel & Cincinnati Pops Orchestra.


I have had a review up for "Spartacus" for some time - in fact, it is on my personal Top Ten list - but I love "Spartacus" so much that I decided to give the Spartacus Love Theme its own special page here.

Kirk Douglas Jean Simmons Spartacus movieloversreviews.filminspector.com
Kirk Douglas and Jean Simmons in "Spartacus"

As anyone familiar with Stanley Kubrick's "Spartacus" knows, Spartacus is an escaped slave who falls in love with fellow escaped slave Varinia. Unlike later vulgar versions of the tale, their love is portrayed in the 1960 "Spartacus" as a courtly romance between two mature and somewhat worn adults. The delicate love theme reinforces that depiction, and is so wildly out of context with what people usually remember about "Spartacus" that it never received any kind of recognition. The score is also somewhat overlooked because the "Spartacus" soundtrack album was not properly done and North never got around to properly showcasing it before his passing in 1991 - he had a lot of other things to work on. North himself was a giant of soundtracks - he received an Honorary Academy Award, the very first one by a composer, but never nabbed a competitive Oscar despite fifteen nominations. Fifteen nominations! Fifteen!

Kirk Douglas Jean Simmons Spartacus movieloversreviews.filminspector.com
Kirk Douglas and Jean Simmons in "Spartacus"

A common thread among the greatest films of all time is that they have terrific scores. "Spartacus" does not have quite as memorable a score as, say, "Gone With the Wind" or "The Third Man," but it also is awesome in its own subtle way. Alex North was one of the great unknown composers of modern times, and this is his best work.

Kirk Douglas Jean Simmons Spartacus movieloversreviews.filminspector.com
Kirk Douglas and Jean Simmons in "Spartacus"

Anyway, I hope you enjoy the Love Theme from "Spartacus" as much as I do.

Alex North Spartacus randommusings.filminspector.com
Alex North.


2017

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