We don’t know about you, but we love the music from The Shawshank Redemption (1995), Road to Perdition (2003), Finding Nemo (2004) and Wall.E (2009) to bits. The original scores are brilliant creations of 58 year old American composer Thomas Newman. He has been nominated 12 times for an Oscar, but has never taken home one. His latest work for the sappily sentimental (we mean that in a good way) Saving Mr. Banks is, well, unfortunately overlooked by the Academy Award voters – again.
This is a soundtrack album you’d want to listen to when you are down, because it contains some brightly sentimental harmonies which will, like all things Disney, lift your spirits. Kicking off the 46 minute album is “Chim Chim Cher-ee (East Wind)”, a cue narrated by Colin Farrell who pleasantly loses his heavy Irish accent. It sets the mood going, as you indulge yourself in Newman’s heartfelt and spirited compositions “Travers Goff”, “Walking Bus”, “Uncle Albert” and “Jollification”.
Elsewhere in the album, Ray Charles performs “One Mint Julep” and The Dave Brubeck Company strums a jazzy “Heigh Ho”. There are also excerpts from John Lee Hancock’s film, including “Chim Chim Cher-ee (Responstible)”, “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious” and “Let’s Go Fly A Kite” performed by cast members Jason Schwartzman and B.J. Novak (who play the Sherman Brothers), Emma Thompson (who plays P.L. Travers), Bradley Whitford and Melanie Paxson.
Things get a little melancholic with “To My Mother” and “Westerly Weather”, but you know with all things Disney, there will be a happy ending. “Saving Mr Banks (End Title)” closes the soundtrack nicely, leaving smiles on our faces.
This deluxe version of the soundtrack gets extra half a star because of its second CD which includes Mary Poppins pre demo recordings and actually tracks from the Mary Poppins film. Fans of Julie Andrews and Dick Van Dyke will want to make this a must own.
Recommended Track: (26) Let’s Go Fly A Kite (Disc 1)
Review by John Li