Javier Navarrete – Mirrors *Review In English*

“MIRRORS is grandly spooky and Javier Navarrete does add some good favors to this least favorable type of film music.”

Soundtrack Label: Lakeshore Records

MIRRORS is an American remake of 2003 K-horror called INTO THE MIRROR. Directed by Alexandre Aja (from the remake of THE HILLS HAVE EYES and the latest PIRANHA 3D in 2010), it tells the story of a suspended NYPD detective named Ben Carson (portrayed by Kiefer Sutherland who still looks just tough like his character in TV series 24) who later begins his first day of working as a night security guard at the burn-down mall called Mayflower. But not for long on his surveillance during the shift, he has experienced some paranormal activities through the mirrors and these harms unfortunately don’t seem to stay only at its place.

Despite its underwhelming receptions from the critics, the film is still potential and enjoyable for me at some points. Besides, I also find something stand out from its music which is composed by Javier Navarrete.

MIRRORS is one of a few scores Navarrete has done the year after his overwhelming success in PAN’S LABYRINTH. The thing I always love about Navarrete’s style of orchestral composition is that it sounds rich and somehow epic. Even the least favorable genre of film score like horror or thriller, he can still deliver some quality that deserves to be recognized as much as what Christopher Young does mostly.
This score is driven by two thematic materials; one is obviously meaningful while the other is quite ambiguous but still makes some decent moments for the entire score (and album).

The first theme, which can be considered as MIRRORS’ conceptual theme, is obviously pointed out in everything titled Asturias such as Asturias / Main Titles, Asturias / Investigation, Asturias / The House Is Safe, and Asturias / In the Mirror. The theme used in these tracks represents something grandly haunting as well as menacing and it is simply catchy in tune. Other than that, it has also got its bold orchestral moment in Escape with elegance and thrill that might satisfy some action-core listeners.

The second theme is subtle but still scary atmospherically. It is involved in many emotional cues and firstly heard in Ben Carson which is a well-constructed track that sums up every necessary motif which is going to be used broadly for the rest of the score. For example, the piano tempo in the first half of Esseker, the mysterious Mayflower and Farmhouse Basement, the whisperous Little Anna, the rising The Quest, and the uplifting crescendo in Srorrim with the twist.

Now as the themes go on, the next section I’m going to talk about is the traditional spooky one which will basically bang its listeners in the face with sudden loudness. Well, here is likely the least favorable part to listen to; nonetheless, there are still some interesting cues to seek due to how Navarrete doesn’t play cheap with it. As you can see, many tracks are worth no less than the average 3 stars for me but I would like to state some better cues like the partial dramatic Angela’s Death plus the tense build-up (with some banging) Handprints, Extending Mirrors, and Keep Your Eyes Closed.

By the way, surprisingly, this score still has another bright spot in a short but beautiful Open Your Eyes in which the vocal and sacred soundscape easily gain 4 stars for one single track here.

Bottom line, MIRRORS is grandly spooky and Javier Navarrete does add some good favors to this least favorable type of film music. It might not be groundbreaking, comparing to many earlier professional composers with their works out there, but Navarrete helps affirming that horror/thriller score can still be memorable and enjoyable as well.

Tracklist

01. Asturias / Main Titles (*****)

02. Subway (***)

03. Ben Carson (*****)

04. First Night (***)

05. Handprints (****)

06. Fire (***)

07. Esseker (****)

08. The Dressing Room (***)

09. The Mayflower (****)

10. Angela’s Death (****)

11. What Do You Want from Me? (***)

12. Asturias / Investigation (*****)

13. The Mirrors Room (***)

14. Little Anna (****)

15. Asturias / The House Is Safe (****)

16. The Quest (****)

17. Farmhouse Basement (****)

18. Extending Mirrors (****)

19. Michael’s Reflection (***)

20. Keep Your Eyes Closed (****)

21. Open Your Eyes (****)

22. Possession (***)

23. Escape (*****)

24. Srorrim (*****)

25. Asturias / In the Mirror (*****)

Final Score: 8

Buy It @Boomerang

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