Musical Score By: Ennio Morricone
Distributed by: Silva Screen Records
Reviewed by Melissa Minners
Baaria, the 2009 Italian film written and directed by Giuseppe Tornatore, tells the story of life in the Sicilian town from the 1920s to the 1980s. Life in Baaria is viewed through the eyes of lovers Peppino (Francesco Scianna) and Mannina (Margareth Madè) and their families. An autobiographical and nostalgic tribute to the director’s Sicilian hometown as well as his family, a recurring theme of the film is how life always seems to come full circle, generation after generation.
The musical score of Baaria is composed by Italian composer Ennio Morricone. Born in Rome, Morricone wrote his first compositions when he was just six years old. He took up the trumpet at the age of nine. By the age of twelve, he was studying the trumpet, composition, choral music and choral direction. Immediately after graduating from the conservatory, Morricone embarked upon his composing career, starting off with classical pieces and eventually graduating to film score. Since then, he has composed and arranged musical scores for over 500 films, including A Fist Full of Dollars, The Good, the Bad and the Ugly, Once Upon a Time in America, The Untouchables, Cinema Paradiso, Mission to Mars and more.
Thanks to his Italian background and his experience with the eras upon which this film is based, Ennio Morricone was able to create the perfect musical score for Baaria. The score starts off with a rather long track. Almost eleven minutes in length, Sinfonia per Baaria seems to scan the entire epic. The musical score of this track never seems to settle on one genre, but jumps around to different styles of music seemingly representing every decade the movie spans.
The rest of the soundtrack features music that varies in nature, but never in beauty. I love the music of Italy and it is perfectly represented in this soundtrack, from the festive to the morose, the love song to the military march. Ennio Morricone’s classical training comes through in this music, soothing in its beauty and unique in its flavor.
I enjoyed the Baaria Soundtrack so much that I found I wanted to watch the film. Thus, Ennio Morricone has achieved success in creating a soundtrack that perfectly accompanies a film, but does just as well as a stand alone album. The music speaks of the beauty and strength of a people and a town that spans generations. I commend Morricone for such excellent musical composition and look forward to hearing more from this incredibly talented composer in the future.