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Il Bandito dagli Occhi Azzurri
  • Composed by Ennio Morricone
  • Beat Records / 2013 / 50m

A 1980 crime thriller, Franco Nero stars in Il Bandito dagli Occhi Azzurri (aka The Blue-Eyed Bandit) as a disguised “middle-aged, brown-eyed cripple” (according to the IMDB) who robs his employers using his natural blue eyes to throw them off the scent.  A master of disguise!  Sadly his plan doesn’t quite work out the way he wants.  Hard to see where it could go wrong, really.  Ennio Morricone’s score came in an uncharacteristically quiet year for the composer – just twelve movies and one tv series.  It’s a slightly unusual one, the highlight undoubtedly the opening cue, the jazzy, steamy urban sounds of “Città viva” living up to its name perfectly.  “Made assente” presents a romantic variation on the same theme, which is very pleasant (though not up there with the composer’s more memorable).

After a piece of characteristically-uncomfortable suspense, “Campi aperti e sospesi” is a wonderful piece of piano jazz, “Double face”, driving and dynamic and highly entertaining.  “Esecuzione radiofonica” is a great piece which starts as baroque classical pastiche before a pop beat is added – wonderfully inventive.  “Per Enrico, Riccardo e Roberto” is laid-back lounge jazz, sounding more like source music than score.  Surprisingly, the music continues in this vein for the majority of the rest of the album, save for the more hardcore jazz of “Stranamente di notte” and the gorgeous, brief reprise of “Made assente”.  In the grand scheme of things it’s a relatively minor Morricone work, but it’s an interesting one, going off in unexpected directions.  The 2013 release from Beat Records adds just under 15 minutes of additional music, all variations on tracks featured in the original programme.

Rating: ***

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  1. mastadge (Reply) on Friday 10 May, 2013 at 22:46

    For once the English sounds better than the Italian!

  2. plindboe (Reply) on Sunday 19 May, 2013 at 23:55

    I’d rate this score 4 stars. The track “Stranamente di giorno” in particular is ultra-catchy, though strangely interrupted by loud noise a couple of times. The “Madre assente” cues are incredibly beautiful and sad. “Esecuzione radiofonica” is a fantastic classical sounding piece that’s a load of fun when the pop-beat enters. “Sotto i ponti della città” is another enjoyable jazz piece. A rather unique score for Morricone, that’s a must-have for morriconians, and well worth checking out for other film score fans as well.