Pride and Prejudice and Zombies

Composed By: Fernando Velázquez

Distributed by: Varese Sarabande Records

Reviewed by Melissa Minners


                Some time ago, Justine Manzano reviewed Jane Austin's Pride and Prejudice, the book versus the movie and I reviewed the movie soundtrack.  Now, several years later, I find myself faced with an opportunity to review the soundtrack of a movie based upon another novel that parodies Pride and Prejudice.  In Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, based on the novel by Seth Grahame-Smith, Colonel Darcy (Sam Reilly) is a zombie killer, while Elizabeth Bennett (Lily James) and her sisters have become masters of martial arts and weaponry.  Though not quite pleased with one another at first, Darcy and Elizabeth fall in love whilst trying to survive a zombie horde attack.  But can two people from very different sides of the track ever hope to find happiness together in a world continuously trying to eat them?

                The musical score of Pride and Prejudice and Zombies was created by Spanish composer and musician Fernando Velázquez.  An accomplished cellist, Velázquez has performed in various orchestras and in the pit orchestra at Madrid's Teatro Real Opera.  He also plays guitar in rock bands, rock and roll being a passion of his from an early age.  His movie scoring credits include such notable films as The Orphanage, The Impossible, Devil, The Backwoods, Saving Grace, Mama, Hercules and Crimson Peak.

                Not knowing what the film was about other than the fact that it parodies a story I have never read, I wasn't sure what I was about to hear when I began listening to the Pride and Prejudice and Zombies Soundtrack.  I suppose I expected a run of the mill horror soundtrack with a Victorian era feel.  What I got confused me a bit, though some things were cleared up when I researched the film.  The score is mainly orchestral with quick moments of electronic sound used to enhance the danger feel.  There are some Celtic influences here and I am guessing this comes from the ethnic background of Darcy, but, until I researched this movie, I couldn't figure out the Asian influences.  Now, I understand that they represent the Bennett sisters' time in China.  Heavy percussion is used to up the ante and the adrenaline during action scenes.

                Quite honestly, I was expecting some serious action/horror sound from the Pride and Prejudice and Zombies Soundtrack.  What I received was a tongue-in-cheek orchestral score with a comedic flare.  Think old Abbott and Costello movies like Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein, Abbott and Costello Meet the Invisible Man, Abbott and Costello Meet Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde and more.  Though the album is not entirely unenjoyable, the sound certainly came as a surprise.  I have no doubt that fans of the film will enjoy getting their hands on the movie soundtrack, but I'm not certain it will appeal to those who have no idea as to what the film is about.


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