Captain Fantastic Soundtrack and Score

Musical Score By: Alex Somers

Song By: Various Artists

Distributed by: Lakeshore Records

Reviewed by Melissa Minners


                In the dramatic film, Captain Fantastic, Ben Cash (Viggo Mortensen) and his wife are raising their family deep in the forest of the Pacific Northwest.  They are homeschooled and learn most of what they know through their experiences in the great outdoors.  When Benís wife dies, the family must leave their idyllic existence and enter the world, forcing them to face new challenges and Ben to question whether his way was the right way.

                In July 2016, Lakeshore Records released two albums with music from Captain Fantastic. The Captain Fantastic Soundtrack features songs and instrumentals performed by Jonsi & Alex, Israel Nash, Yo-Yo Ma, Kirk Ross and members of the cast.  The Captain Fantastic Original Motion Picture Score features musical score created by American composer Alex Somers.  First rising into prominence in 2009 with Riceboy Sleeps, a highly acclaimed ambient album created in collaboration with his partner Jonsi, Alex Somers has worked to create his own music and collaborated to create and produce music with Jonsi.  Scoring credits include the WGNís first season of Manh(A)ttan.

                The Captain Fantastic Soundtrack features a mix of pop, folk and classical.  I loved the classical music like Goldberg Variations performed separately by Glenn Gould and Kirk Ross and the Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 4. performed by Yo-Yo Ma.  Songs like Sweet Child of Mine, Scotland the Brave and I Shall Be Released are performed by the cast and, though styled different than what I am used to, are definitely well done.  The Captain Fantastic Score is mainly strings and electronic sound and often haunting with its ambient sound.  I found it hard to listen to sometimes Ė that high pitch string background that seems to accompany every track and offer up an ethereal quality can grate on the listenerís ears after a while. 

Thereís no denying the emotional drama produced by Alex Somersí score, but when not coupled with the visuals, Iím not quite certain that it works as a standalone album.  The Captain Fantastic Soundtrack and Score albums are more for hardcore fans of the film and Somersí work rather than your average music fan.  I recommend checking out the classical tracks on the soundtrack and a few of the tracks of score, but I canít see many people wanting to buy both albums to add to the soundtrack collection unless they have seen the film.


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