Like a lot of movie purists, I’m dubious about the idea of remaking a film as universally loved as Ben-Hur. The thought of CGI, 3-D and a director best known for Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter retelling an undisputed classic (in half the running time) seems like a perfect recipe for disaster. Whether or not that ends up being the case remains to be seen. One thing is certain, though: The music itself is terrific.
Composed and co-conducted by Marco Beltrami, whose music for 3:10 to Yuma and Knowing are among my recent favorites, has put together a suitably epic score which incorporates both modern and traditional instrumentation, along with well-placed vocal passages. Spanning 27 tracks and running well over an hour, the disc’s peaks and valleys blend together nicely, even as a stand-alone piece of music.
So even if this new Ben-Hur ends up being the epic bomb some are predicting, none of the blame can be placed at Beltrami’s feet. This is a great film score that, somewhat ironically, wouldn’t sound entirely out-of-place accompanying the 1959 classic we all know and love.
PURR...LIKE A GOOD SCRATCH BEHIND THE EARS