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Worst soundtracks suggestions

Loïc D

Monkeying with libraries
I was wondering if anyone has suggestions for horrible soundtracks.

What I mean as horrible soundtrack is :
- something that poorly composed or arranged
- and/or a horrible mix
- and/or damages the (not as bad) movie
- and/or totally misses the point

I'm mostly targeting commercial releases, don't post your own stuff :rofl:

The goal of this thread is to have a gentle laugh at some stuff, not to open a flame war against a specific composer or style.

Who know, this thread might also turn a safe haven for composers lacking self-confidence. :)


Ok, I'll open the ball with the first dance.

I was listening to GoldenEye the other day and not only it doesn't feel Bond-ish but it also aged badly.
(IIRC, Serra only had a couple of weeks to deliver it and was a tad overwhelmed by the job).
Disclaimer : GoldenEye excluded, I generally appreciate Serra's scores.
 

Germain B

Member
The changes of directors and composers for the Harry Potter saga created a big lack of cohesiveness. There's no memorable theme (apart from that Edwige's theme by John Williams that became the opening piece) and therefore something is obviously missing although the different composers did the job, they did nothing more...

I know there is nothing horrible here, but worth mentioning (maybe).
 

pmcrockett

Senior Member
The score to the first Tomb Raider movie (the 2001 one) is a little like the GoldenEye situation. They didn't hire Graeme Revell until the last minute, and he had like two weeks to come up with something. It's not a great score, but it's still astonishing that Revell was able to deliver anything at all with the time they gave him.
 

Satorious

Active Member
I thought Serra had longer than this, even if that wasn't the case - he certainly didn't leave much time to fix it (John Altman stepped up to rescore the Tank Chase at extremely short notice). A bit of info on that here: Composer John Altman explains what went wrong with Goldeneye's score.

Goldeneye is an oddity to me, I actually like what Serra did with Timpani drums and the main theme. His romantic theme for Natalya was rather nice. But everything else - yeah, not so much - often it goes against the scene (such as what I call the Outrun scene or the Casino music - which was lovely and yet utterly out of place). Would work in Leon, but for Bond? That end song is absolutely excruciating (sorry Eric, I know you sing on it also)! Talking of being out of place, I struggle with Ladyhawke - it feels tonally wrong and very - errr - very 80's!
 

JohnG

Senior Member
I always take the approach of:
great score - credit the composer.
not so great score - assume blame lies with the director/producer.

Works for me!
I agree.

It's the schedule, budget, communication -- it's not just on the composer when the music stinks.

Nevertheless....there are some stinkers...
 

BenG

Senior Member
Really interesting topic! I thought the score of Steven Soderbergh's 'Unsane' was terrible. Though, I thought the movie was not great on the whole...


(Edit: Looks like Thomas Newman himself wasn't a fan either as he used a pseudonym for his credit)
 
The changes of directors and composers for the Harry Potter saga created a big lack of cohesiveness. There's no memorable theme (apart from that Edwige's theme by John Williams that became the opening piece) and therefore something is obviously missing although the different composers did the job, they did nothing more...
Hey, so...
A couple of things beforehand: I am aware that we are not supposed to argue in this thread, and this is not my intention. I also want to state that I do not feel offended by your post (I'm saying that in case the following makes it seem that way) and I don't want to offend you by strongly contradicting you. All I'm trying to do is to offer a different viewpoint on this subject :)
(...sorry for any grammar issues btw., English is not my first language.)


I will start with the assumption that you are not heavily invested in the Harry Potter franchise, because "Edwige's Theme" (it is called "Hedwig's Theme) does not look like a typing error. This is - of course - completely fine. But it also makes me want to comment on your post, as someone who grew up with this franchise and deeply loves the soundtrack of these movies (which is partly due to nostalgia, I acknowledge that ;)).
I don't disagree with everything you said - yes, there is a certain lack of cohesiveness in both the soundtrack and the tone of the movies, and yes, this was mostly caused by the change of directors and composers.
However, Hedwig's Theme is (at least in my opinion) by far not the only meorable theme from these movies. Let me spam some links :)

For reference: When I am saying "Hedwig's Theme" I am referring to the first 17 seconds

I am mentioning this because this is not the only memorable(! ;)) theme from that track but the one that is usually associated with it. Speaking of this track - here are two other passages you might recognize: 2:31 - 2:45 and 2:48 - 3:00.

Some more beautiful and at least relatively well-known ones:



0:00 - 0:08 and 1:32 - 1:59



1:30 - 1:50




1:10 - 1:39
 
Now on to "although the different composers did the job, they did nothing more". Feel free to correct me, if I'm wrong, but to me this sounds like you are saying that the music works but is only okay and nothing special. I want to give some examples of scenes in which the music is (in my opinion) absolutely brilliant. These examples are intentionally not from the first three movies, as I don't think anyone is going to doubt that John Williams did a marvelous job there.

This scene is from the sixth movie, which even fans say is "okay but nothing more". I also chose this one because "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince" is not the one that immediately comes to mind when talking about great musical moments in the Harry Potter series.


0:40 - 2:14 (This just sends shivers down my spine every time I watch it :))



1:03 - 3:34 This theme just fits the character perfectly.



0:00 - 1:34

What I love about this last one (apart from the incorporation of Hedwig's Theme at 0:58) is that all the movements of the dragon are present in the music. You can hear it climb upwards, pause to breathe, take off and finally the ecstasy of flight.


Ok, so... I could go on for hours/pages (can you tell?), but I should probably find an end.
I put a lot of time into this post and I'm probably overreacting, but I just had to get this off my chest after seeing my favourite soundtrack of all times mentioned in a thread about "horrible soundtracks" (I know you did not say it was horrible, but still, I hope you see where I'm coming from.).
I hope I did not annoy anyone with this rather long post(s) - and kudos to everyone who actually read all of this and listened to (/watched) the examples. :thumbsup:
 
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Cheezus

Active Member
First example that comes to mind is the OST for Dragon Quest XI. My girlfriend played through this whole game and I constantly had to hear this battle theme pop up over and over again:


The composition itself is pretty annoying after a couple of listens but even worse the MIDI sounds chosen for it are so grating for a song that repeats hundreds of times throughout the game.

Perhaps the worst part is that this was the composer's own decision. The entire soundtrack was recorded with real orchestra but the composer apparently insisted on putting only the MIDI versions in the game so he could sell the proper recordings separately. Only the Switch version, which IIRC was released more than a year after initial release, has the true orchestral recordings in the game.
 

BenG

Senior Member
The entire soundtrack was recorded with real orchestra but the composer apparently insisted on putting only the MIDI versions in the game so he could sell the proper recordings separately.
Wow. Thought this was from the 90's and shocked to find its from 2017. How does this even happen?!
 

EgM

Game music!
First example that comes to mind is the OST for Dragon Quest XI. My girlfriend played through this whole game and I constantly had to hear this battle theme pop up over and over again:


The composition itself is pretty annoying after a couple of listens but even worse the MIDI sounds chosen for it are so grating for a song that repeats hundreds of times throughout the game.

Perhaps the worst part is that this was the composer's own decision. The entire soundtrack was recorded with real orchestra but the composer apparently insisted on putting only the MIDI versions in the game so he could sell the proper recordings separately. Only the Switch version, which IIRC was released more than a year after initial release, has the true orchestral recordings in the game.

Not Sugiyama's best work, lol

Bought this game a year ago, didn't play it yet... Hearing this, it'll be painful
 

Soundlex

Member
"Asterix Conquers America" is an absolute masterpiece of a disaster by Harold Faltermeyer...
The worst of the worst, folks. Not only it sounds terrible but I couldn't keep count on how many times he totally misses the point.
 

Germain B

Member
Ok, so... I could go on for hours/pages (can you tell?), but I should probably find an end.
I put a lot of time into this post and I'm probably overreacting, but I just had to get this off my chest after seeing my favourite soundtrack of all times mentioned in a thread about "horrible soundtracks" (I know you did not say it was horrible, but still, I hope you see where I'm coming from.).
I hope I did not annoy anyone with this rather long post(s) - and kudos to everyone who actually read all of this and listened to (/watched) the examples.
Haha, sorry about that (and for the french "Edwige"), and thanks for your answer !

I have to say that I agree with your points, and mine is not contradicting it.
When I wrote "did the job" I was including the idea that the job can be amazingly done, but for a scene, a moment. The reproach I make here is that the canvas behind all of those cues could have been much more cohesive, and I find it unfortunately really obvious. I lack those musical bonds that I'm expecting in such a saga.

(Oh, and I regularly listen to those soundtracks (especially the first 3, masterpieces by the master) as I love the general magical atmosphere)

Sorry for the digression, @Loïc D.
 

lux

Senior Member
The entire HP saga is full of beautiful music, some reported here by Laurin, chapters have their own sound and feel and thats perfectly fine to me. Also the directors changes. After all is a story about kids growin, and every stage of our lives has a different look, sound and feel in real life. It happened to all of us. Unless you guys still listen to lullabies on your earbuds. Which would be fine enough as well, as tastes are subjective :)
 

FGBR

Member
I thought Serra had longer than this, even if that wasn't the case - he certainly didn't leave much time to fix it (John Altman stepped up to rescore the Tank Chase at extremely short notice). A bit of info on that here: Composer John Altman explains what went wrong with Goldeneye's score.

Goldeneye is an oddity to me, I actually like what Serra did with Timpani drums and the main theme. His romantic theme for Natalya was rather nice. But everything else - yeah, not so much - often it goes against the scene (such as what I call the Outrun scene or the Casino music - which was lovely and yet utterly out of place). Would work in Leon, but for Bond? That end song is absolutely excruciating (sorry Eric, I know you sing on it also)! Talking of being out of place, I struggle with Ladyhawke - it feels tonally wrong and very - errr - very 80's!

Haven't seen Goldeneye since the 90s, but now I want to see it again! Just checked out that end credits song, and that is indeed very odd.
 

Yowakeem

New Member
Not to derail the thread. But here is a pretty good 3 part vidoe series about the music in Harry Potter.
It touches on alot of things that has been said in this thread. I find it really interesting.
 
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