Tuesday, October 2, 2007
Soundtrack #6 The Moon In The Gutter (Gabriel Yared)
Oscar winning composer Gabriel Yared was born in Beirut in the fall of 1949. After quitting a law career in his twenties he switched his attention to music and became one of the most in demand French orchestrator's and arrangers of the seventies. He would work with the great Francoise Hardy among many other legendary French artists in this period.
His first major film score was with none other than French New Wave icon Jean-Luc Godard on his mind blowing SLOW MOTION. Yared's work was memorable and it led him to a variety of assignments before his next major work, Jean-Jacques Beineix's THE MOON IN THE GUTTER in 1983.
Yared's work on THE MOON IN THE GUTTER is quite remarkable. At times overwhelmingly romantic yet with a sly sinister undertone that kept it from ever being syrupy, Yared himself has called THE MOON IN THE GUTTER his finest score. The soundtrack album itself is unfortunately out of print but the music can be heard on Yared's Film Music Volume Four which is an import from England.
He would work again with Beineix on the majestic BETTY BLUE in 1986, which would garner him a Cesar nomination. His collaboration with Beineix would continue on IP5 in 1992.
Many more scores followed and in the late nineties Yared gradually began working on more and more Hollywood productions, with a string of directors who had been influenced by his work with Beineix. Some of the most notable English language films he has lent his talents to have been directed by British born Anthony Minghella, these include THE ENGLISH PATIENT (1996), THE TALENTED MR. RIPLEY (1999) and 2003's COLD MOUNTAIN. Yared would in fact win his sole Oscar for his moving score to THE ENGLISH PATIENT.
It is hard to imagine THE MOON IN THE GUTTER without the expressive, surreal and at times touching score Gabriel Yared composed for it. It is one of the most intoxicating and even dizzying scores of the period and deserves a domestic re-release (as does the film, but more on that later).