I had been a Howard Shore fan for many years, finding him to be one of the most interesting and consistently engaging of modern film composers. The music for his collaborations with David Cronenberg have always yielded fascinating results, and as a genre composer (Silence of the Lambs, SE7EN, The Cell) he had few equals.
Nevertheless, after the completion of his mammoth score for The Lord of the Rings, there was a part of my mind that was nagging... where will Shore go from here?
The Aviator won the Golden Globe but was snubbed for an Oscar nomination, which is a shame because it is clearly one of the best scores of the year. Bold and intricate, highly detailed and emotive, The Aviator is phenomenal. The superlush Flemish Radio Orchestra is supplemented by castanets to give the score a unique flavor.
I have absolutely no idea how this music works in the film, but while I haven't liked the last few Martin Scorsese films I've seen, he usually knows how to use music very well (the exception is the lousy music track for Gangs of New York, but that movie was a complete misfire for me anyway) If there is a problem I have with the record, it is the fact that the track "Long Beach Harbour 1947" has a radio broadcast over it, which is jarring and unnecessary. Other than that, this was an amazing musical journey.