- Composed by Alan Silvestri
- La-La Land Records / 2013 / 59m
Bruce Willis and friends are back in the action/comedy sequel Red 2, directed by Galaxy Quest‘s Dean Parisot, with Anthony Hopkins and Catherine Zeta-Jones amongst the new faces this time.
Action veteran Alan Silvestri has taken over scoring duties for the sequel, taking over the reigns from Christophe Beck. Silvestri seems to have adopted a patter of scoring one big action movie a year, fitting in one or two smaller projects around them, but is no longer the prolific voice in film scoring that he once was; he’s always done action so well, it’s nice to see him still getting to take on these projects. Of course, Alan Silvestri and electronics do not mix under any circumstances, so it’s a good job that a film like Red 2 would allow him to focus on his strength, the orchestra, with some old-school thrills. Well, that’s the theory; in practice the orchestra is largely drowned out by synth pads and drum loops that sound like they’ve just been woken up from a thirty-year coma.
The orchestral base is solid enough – the familiar Silvestri action devices are all there – but suffers from the lack of any particularly memorable thematic material. He does use the same little motifs throughout the score, but none sticks in the memory. The closest the score comes to representing the composer at his best is the exciting “Paris Chase” – it’s nothing original, but it’s a refreshing break from the somewhat somnambulant music around it. “To Moscow” is pretty decent too – at times it seems very slow paced, but then a sudden burst of energy appears from somewhere. “London Chase” is the other decent piece of action, dragged down a bit by the synths but still pretty exciting. My favourite parts of the score are the lighter moments – “Han”, “Dressed to Kill” – which Silvestri scores with enjoyable pop-infused elements. Aside from the dated synths, there’s nothing inherently wrong with Red 2 – it’s just quite dull. The lack of a killer theme (something Alan Silvestri is usually better at delivering than most) is perhaps understandable; but the fact is that there’s not really anything vaguely memorable here at all. You hear a lot of the familiar sounds from Silvestri action scores but they never quite develop into anything.