Produced By: Decca Records
Reviewed by Melissa Minners
Scoop, the latest movie to be released by writer / director Woody Allen, is a murder mystery / comedy starring Hugh Jackman, Scarlett Johansson, Ian McShane, and, of course, Woody Allen. Ian McShane portrays the late British journalist Joe Strombel, whose last works keep him trapped in limbo. In life, Strombel was hunting down the identity of a serial killer in London known as “the Tarot Card Killer”. Unfortunately, there seems no way to complete his work from the grave. Enter American student journalist Sondra Pransky (Scarlett Johansson). When she decided to visit some friends in London, she never expected she would be making a new one from beyond the grave. Aided by a reluctant magician (Woody Allen), Sondra begins her chase on what could be the biggest story of a lifetime.
The soundtrack of Scoop seems to follow the guidelines of the classical comedies – classical music used in a way that adds an element of entertainment to the action and dialogue of an already entertaining movie. Tchaikovsky, Strauss, Khachaturian and more are used to strengthen the movie in ways immediately imaginable to the listener. One can instantly see the Sabre Dance by Aram Khachaturian being used to accentuate a chase scene. Peer Gynt Suite No. 1: Morning Mood by Edvard Grieg is perfect for any love scenes in the movie. The Swan Lake Ballet Suite by Peter Tchaikovsky is beautiful and mysterious and would be perfect for love scenes as well as scenes in which the “Tarot Killer” is at work. The Nutcracker Ballet No. 7 Scene by Peter Tchaikovsky seems to fit in with the tracking down and capturing of said serial killer. Of course, one would actually have to have seen the movie to know where each musical piece on this soundtrack actually fits, but I’m fairly certain that I have come close in my assumptions.
That being said, there are a couple of tracks on the Scoop Soundtrack which would probably only make sense if seen with visuals from the movie. These tracks, Miami Beach Rhumba by Irving Fields and Albert Gamse, Adios Muchachos by J. Sanders, and Recado by Luiz Antonio and Djalma Ferreira, seem completely out of place on this soundtrack and leave the listener scratching their head, wondering about their relevance to the movie. However, these tracks can hardly take away from the soundtrack as a whole. Such classical favorites, performed by such notables as The Berlin Philharmonic, The Vienna Strauss Orchestra, The London Symphony Orchestra and more, can hardly be overshadowed by an out of place rhumba.
Classical music lovers will thoroughly enjoy the Scoop Soundtrack without ever having to see the movie to discover what track fit what scene. I so enjoyed this album that I listened to it twice before writing this review, and a third time WHILE writing it. Such classical compositions as the Swan Lake Ballet Suite, The Nutcracker Ballet No. 7 Scene, the Peer Gynt Suite No. 1, and the Sabre Dance are timeless. Their strength and beauty will live on in the hearts of music enthusiasts for centuries to come. The Scoop Soundtrack is made up of perhaps some of the best classical pieces of all time and is definitely worth the small pittance one must shell out at the local store for such a masterpiece.