Composed By: Fernando Velázquez
Distributed by: Sony Classical
Reviewed by Melissa Minners
Based on the graphic novels Hercules: The Thracian Wars, the movie Hercules takes place long after the son of Zeus has completed his famous Twelve Labors. Betrayed by Hera, driven to an insanity that forced him to kill his wife and children, Hercules is a bitter man, rejecting his father and choosing instead to live as a mortal. He has since become the leader of a band of mercenaries who would follow him into the gates of Hell if needed. When the King of Thrace asks Hercules to help train his soldiers in defense of his kingdom, Hercules accepts, never realizing what he has given his mercenaries - hope and something worth fighting for.
The musical score of Hercules was created by Fernando Velázquez, an accomplished cellist and composer. Nominated for Breakout Composer of the Year in 2007 by the International Film Music Critics Association, Velázquez began composing musical scores in 1999, beginning with film shorts and working his way into full feature movies and television series. His breakout score for The Orphanage received great critical acclaim. Since then, he has created musical scores for Shiver, Devil, Lope, The Impossible and Mama.
The Hercules score has a heroic movie theme, featuring horn fanfare, swift and sure string strokes, heavy percussion, crashing cymbals and a choir. There are some quiet moments to the score that feature a little mystique in the form of electronic sound in such tracks like Centaurs and Campfire. But this was a score created for an action adventure film and thus, it basically follows that action format, pumping up the adrenaline and lauding the action hero that is Hercules. I did enjoy the Alternate Ending and Choir Theme found at the end of the soundtrack - always nice to have some bonus content.
For the most part, the Hercules Soundtrack is an enjoyable, fast-paced listen, but not all that new sounding. In fact, the music is very reminiscent of musical scores I have been receiving for animated superhero films. So, though not incredibly unique, the score created for Hercules fits the bill as accompaniment to the film and as a stand alone, but isn't something I expect any music fan to run out and buy. This soundtrack will probably only suit those who enjoyed the musical themes while watching the film.