Gladiator (1992)

Jerry Goldsmith

" Rejected or not, it remains a pretty fun score "

Written by Thomas Glorieux - Review of the regular release

It didn't happen often, but Jerry Goldsmith was thrown off pictures on some occasions. One was Gladiator of 1992, a box film starring the (then) rather unknown Cuba Gooding Jr. and Brian Dennehy. Why it was rejected in the first place is beyond me. Because I can not comment on the replacement score by Brad Fiedel, but I can definitely comment on Goldsmith's effort because boy is it fun on several occasions. Granted, it doesn't begin promisingly. A lot of beats, not specifically a bad thing but it doesn't win me over in the beginning. From "Knock Out" we receive the same beats but now in an infectious rhythm, supported by trumpets ala CHiPs. It becomes quite fun and blazing. Definitely when "My Baby / My House" gives us a wonderful creative heroism, one that will get its blazing glory in "No Gloves / Refund / Get Him". And when I say blazing it's blazing because it's enormously fun and upbeat, it's got style, uplifting playfulness and grand quality (hell occasionally it has glimpses of Star Trek so it can't be bad). Then again, in contrast to that blazing heroism we have a subtle and rather intimate piano love theme, keeping things rather cold in return. In general, it might not have worked for the producers. But Gladiator of Goldsmith does work on CD, and in various moments we Goldsmith fans get a lot more than what we bargained for. Definitely for Goldsmith completists and fans.

Beats and rhythm ala CHiPs, an 80's Goldsmith vibe.
Plus it has one of the most fun Goldsmith cues ever composed, screw that "rejected" status.
The opening isn't terribly inviting, but it does improve.

Track Listing

1. I Owe (2.06)
2. The Diner (0.45)
3. Good Luck / The Real Thing (1.53)
4. The Crowd (0.32)
5. Knock Out (2.19)
6. He's Mine (1.07)
7. Repayment (0.37)
8. I'd Rather Walk (0.49)
9. A Favor (2.38)
10. My Baby / My House (4.31) Excellent track
11. Stop the Fight (1.01)
12. Romano's Dead (3.26)
13. Finish Him (1.00)
14. Tommy and Dawn (1.02)
15. That's Enough (1.38)
16. Jackpot / Take A Look (4.09)
17. No Gloves / Refund / Get Him (5.25) Excellent track
18. Tommy and Dawn Love Theme (1.23)

Total Length: 36.21
(click to rate this score)  
(total of 4 votes - average 3.88/5)

Released by

Intrada Special Collection Volume 231 (regular release 2013)