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Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Quest for Camelot Soundtrack, A Mixed Bag

When it comes to the Quest for Camelot movie, it is considered by most people to not be that great a movie.  From a story that isn't memorable to a protagonist that isn't considered that great, the movie did not do well at the box office.  Warner Bros. spent 40 million dollars on the movie only to see the movie gross 22 million dollars, not a success story by any stretch of the imagination.  However, one thing that people did take away from the movie and talk about was the movies soundtrack.  Depending who you talk to it was either a master piece with great songs, or was a sloppy mess that made no sense.  For me, it is somewhere in the middle.

The first thing I would like to point out is that this soundtrack does have some very good songs.  The one that everybody remembers is The Prayer by Celine Dion.  This song would become a big hit for Celine Dion, it was played on many radio stations, and covered and performed by many singers.  During the movie they show it during the chase scene where the main protagonist, Kayley is escaping.  Due to the fact that is supposed to be the mother singing, they cut out the male vocal section that is sung by Andrea Bocelli.  I view it as a brief introduction to the song, so that when you listen to the full song you get a better experience.  Both singers do a fantastic  job and the flow is smooth to create a very relaxing and pleasant experience.

The second song I would like to address is my personal favorite song, I Stand Alone, sung by Bryan White.  Bryan White does a great job singing in this song, he sounds great, he sounds energetic, and he really pours all he has into the song and delivers a great performance.  The music is a great orchestra set that sounds big and powerful and really adds to the energy of the song.  This song is used for the character Garrett to explain to Kayley why she can't join him on his journey.  The visuals shown in the movie are great.  It goes well with the music and doesn't really derail you from it.  Some people get on the movies case for showing all the special plants with no explanation, but I don't let that get to me.  I personally view it as a music video within the movie as has been done with many Disney animated movies of the time.  Some that come to mind are Be Our Guest from Beauty and the Beast  and Son of Man from Tarzan.  These scenes have a real music video feel to them, but it doesn't take away from the movie.  

However, while this movie has some good songs, it all has a lot of songs that are not great and some that are bad.  One song that I really don't like is Ruber's Song.  Gary Oldman is a good actor but the guy cannot sing.  He tries but he comes off as obnoxious and annoying in some parts, while in other parts he sounds like he tries to hard and he cant deliver the melody well.  Another song I really don't care for is If I Didn't Have You.  The first problem is that musically, this song sounds really out of place.  While the majority of the soundtrack has more of orchestra or soft song that fits the time period the move is set in, this song is set in more modern times and it doesn't blend well. The vocals in the song are not great, these guys clearly cannot sing and don't deliver well on the melody.  I get that it is supposed to be a comical song, but even a comical song has to have a good melody and with out that the song isn't funny and doesn't make me laugh.


One of the biggest problems with this soundtrack is how some of the songs don't impact the story to help move it forward.  Some songs don't match the scenes they are in and some come out of nowhere.  This is a problem because a musical is supposed to be like a concept record that tells a movies story through music but so many songs are mismatched, or made pointless by the next scene that the concept flow is lost.  One example is the scene that prayer is used in.  This is a soft song used in an action scene where Kayley is being chased and having weapons shot at her.  This is a scene where we should feel tension, not relaxation, and as a result the song doesn't hit the way it should.  This is also a problem with Ruber's song.  You don't really see the song coming and while watching you start to ask yourself if it is really necessary. This also happens with Through Your Eyes.  Through Your Eyes is not a bad song but because there was not set up for it and it came unexpectedly you don't really appreciate it like you should.  

This is not a totally bad soundtrack.  Like I said earlier, there are some really good songs on it.  However, with there not being a good flow and some bad songs, it really takes away from the soundtrack making it not have as big an impact on the movie as many Disney movies it was competing with did.  Many of these songs would be great on their own but as a soundtrack they don't hold up.  With this soundtrack it all depends what you are looking for.  If you are looking into this for some good songs, then you will be happy, but if you are looking for a soundtrack with a good flow you are going to be disappointed.    


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