Music By: Various Artists

Musical Score By: Jeff Cardoni

Distributed by: Lakeshore Records

Reviewed by Melissa Minners


            In the movie Bonneville, Arvilla Holden (Jessica Lange) is on a mission.  She wants to honor the promise she made to her husband about his final arrangements.  Her husband wanted to be cremated, his ashes scattered.  But if her socialite stepdaughter Francine has her way, Arvilla’s promise to her husband will be broken in favor of a more “proper” funeral.  Determined to keep her promise, she hijacks two friends, Margene (Kathy Bates) and Carol (Joan Allen), to accompany her on her journey across America in her 1966 Pontiac Bonneville Convertible.  What begins as a reluctant road trip turns into an adventure none of them will forget.

            The soundtrack of Bonneville features songs by various artists with musical score by Jeff Cardoni.  A classically trained pianist and former lead guitarist for the band Alien Crime Syndicate, Cardoni found that he had yet another talent, that of composing.  Over the years, Jeff Cardoni has been tapped to create musical scores for movies such as Love For Rent, Just Friends, and American Pie Presents: Beta House.  He has also composed scores for television, creating the Crimes of Passion theme of Pimp My Ride and numerous compositions for CSI: Miami.  For Bonneville, Cardoni took advantage of the somber event of the death of Arvilla’s husband and her duty toward his last requests.  The musical score he composed is found on the second half of the Bonneville Soundtrack and features somber sounding music filled with violins, guitars and piano.  The sadness of Arvilla Holden’s heart is perfectly evident in the musical score.

            In contrast to the musical score of the film, the songs found on the Bonneville Soundtrack are upbeat and fun.  The songs featured are from artists like Donovan, King Floyd, Lazlo Bane, Amos Lee, Chelo, Pete Droge, Bob Sinclair and Nick Kershaw.  Although I loved Catch the Wind by Donovan and I Feel Like Dynamite by King Floyd, my favorite track on this entire album had to be Mama Told Me (Not to Come) by Lazlo Bane.  I have long been a fan of the Three Dog Night version of the song and Lazlo Bane, a California-based alternative rock band, recreates that version perfectly.  When I played this soundtrack at my job, everybody joined in on this song and it has now become our unofficial anthem.

            The first half of the Bonneville Soundtrack is a fun-filled musical experience.  While the second half of the soundtrack is beautifully composed, it’s kind of a downer when compared with the songs preceding it.  Is this soundtrack worth the $19.00 price tag?  I’d have to say, no.  Though I loved some of the songs featured on the soundtrack, I hardly think it’s worth purchasing at full price.  This is one I’d have to purchase from the bargain bins at a drastically reduced price.


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