La Scorta

Ennio Morricone

" Yet, its use of the alt-sax and its subtle portions, mixed with everything I love about Morricone, make it above average. "

Written by Joep de Bruijn - Review of the regular release

La Scorta is a 1993 political thriller directed by Ricky Tognazzi. The film ties in with numerous earlier made films about a magistrate, this time protected by bodyguards at all times, who defies the Sicilian mafia, but there's a level of realism and in the progression of the story, the magistrate and his bodyguards, in their belief to serve and protect, appear interesting characters of flesh and blood. I especially feel in this film, it gives weight to every carabinieri' annus horribilis. La Scorta has problems, and elevates between realism and character building, while not devoid of many predictabilities that commonly casts a large shadow over these sorts of films.

In writing scores for crime, mafia-related/ Poliziotteschi projects, Ennio Morricone excelled with a great number of wonderful scores. La Scorta certainly feels reminiscent of so many scores that outshine its music indefinitely; from the minimal, staccato tension, so strongly present in a Poliziotteschi such as Revolver, and the authoritative mafia-laden La Piovra, to a variety of other trademarks, while also providing easily his best use of an (alt) sax. This may sound like a routine best of score, but many subtleties and excellence in writing make it work better than average.

La Scorta (02:47 is an excellent example to demonstrate how Morricone writes all too familiar staccato rhythmic music, with thumping piano, strings, brass, but interwoven with a great alto saxophone. In cues such as this, the consistent tension of the safety of the magistrate is exceptional in display, and as said, feels like a combination of the greatest minimal piece by Morricone (Revolver), La Piovra and others.

It also includes a short theme, presented closely throughout the score to different instruments, which are mostly optimistic, elegant, and amiable in sound, presented best by the regular flute performance Paolo Zampini, cello and strings.

But as said, with so many familiar things in one score, the alt-sax, besides introspectiveness in some of its cues, is what elevates the composer's score to La Scorta above average. In the 1967 L'Harem, the composer gave great exposure to the sleazy saxophone performances of Gato Barbieri, and in La Scorta he allowed Rosario Giuliani to put great emphasis on the instrument in the mixture of repetition of earlier composed music. The instrument is noble, amiable, dissonant, and lyrical in display. Una Breve, Strana Gioia (02:11) resembles the 'Gruppo Di Improvvisazione Nuova Consonanza' atonal use of the instrument, mixing the recordings of several saxophones in one. It is also evidently strong in the Un Collage di Timori (07:40), a mixture of underscore, slightly lyrical, direct use of suspense, and other respectable ideas, but above all, the alto sax comes out strongly.

La Scorta is a score that, on paper, is not nearly as strong in its suspense, experiments and lyrical feel. Yet, its use of the alt-sax and its subtle portions, mixed with everything I love about Morricone, make it above average. There are numerous other scores by the maestro which show a lot more fatigue. In the film, a short cue from Morricone's Peur Sur Le Ville was reused.

1. Solidarieta E Addio (6:28)
2. La Scorta (2:52)
3. Una Breve, Strana Gioia (2:16)
4. A Tavola, Insieme (2:14)
5. Autobomba (1:37)
6. Quella Ragazza (1:34)
7. Lettura (2:13)
8. La Festa Con Il Dolce (1:49)
9. Il Pericolo Per I Figli (1:41)
10. Uniti (2:18)
11. Pericolo (2:08)
12. I 4 Amici (1:44)
13. Breve Ritorno A Casa (1:27)
14. Un Collage Di Timori (06:17)
15. Trapani Di Notte (1:15)
16. Pentimento (2:03)
17. Nessun Trasferimento (1:48)
18. La Procura E L'Indiziato (1:28)
19. Cercare E Ritrovare (2:56)
20. L'Autobotte (1:44)
21. La Seconda Notte (:51)

Total Duration: 48:43

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(total of 1 votes - average 3.5/5)

Released by

Viva Musica (regular release 1993)