Harold & Kumar Escape From Guantanamo Bay

Musical Score By: George S. Clinton

Distributed by: Lakeshore Records

Reviewed by Melissa Minners


            We first met the stoner slacking duo of Harold (John Cho) and Kumar (Kal Penn) in 2004 when they embarked on their incredible adventurous search for a White Castle after a bout with weed-induced munchies.  Now, the weed-wasted duo find themselves in a great deal of trouble after attempting to sneak a bong on board a flight to Amsterdam.  Harold and Kumar find themselves running from the law after being accused of terrorism.  If you thought Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle was funny, Harold & Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay is a sequel right up your alley.

            Chosen to create the musical score for this album is songwriter, arranger and session player George S. Clinton.  Clinton has written songs recorded by such notable artists as Michael Jackson, Joe Cocker and Smokey Robinson.  He has also recorded four albums of his own work.  The sound created by the George Clinton Band attracted the attention of a producer who hired him to score his first film.  Thus began a very successful movie scoring career.  Clinton has created musical scores for movies of every genre, including such notables as Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery, Mortal Kombat, Wild Things, The Santa Claus 2: The Mrs. Clause, The Astronautís Wife and more.

            The soundtrack of Harold & Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay opens with music that sounds as if it belongs in a spy movie.  The use of horns, fast percussion, and electronic music with ominous undertones give the listener a sense of action and intrigue.  There are exotic undertones as well, mostly used for scenes in which the main characters are stoned.  Guitars are used throughout the soundtrack in different ways.  Sometimes they express love and beauty with soft tones and sweet harmony.  Other times they are used to give an ominous feel to the music.  Then there is the back-country lick used in track six (Dead Bambi / Cell Phone / Doors / Cyrus) that gives one the impression that Harold and Kumar are definitely finding themselves in the wrong place at the wrong time.

            I have never listened to a George S. Clinton soundtrack that I didnít like.  I am the proud owner of the Mortal Kombat Soundtrack and I thought the music truly expressed the feelings and action of the film.  I was happily surprised to notice some bits and pieces of sound from Mortal Kombat in the Harold & Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay Soundtrack.  Although this movie is a comedy and Mortal Kombat was a martial arts action flick, for some reason, these sounds seemed to fit on this soundtrack as well.  The unexpectedness of music expressing action and intrigue in a comedy flick probably does a great deal towards enhancing the comedic aspects of the film.  The Harold & Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay Soundtrack by George S. Clinton is a fun soundtrack well-worth the money.  As I said earlier, I have never listened to a George S. Clinton soundtrack that I didnít enjoy and now I can honestly say that I still havenít.  The Harold & Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay Soundtrack gets a big thumbs up from me.


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