Film scores

Soundtrack review: The rewrite (Clyde Lawrence and Cody Fitzgerald – 2015)

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„The rewrite” is about formerly successful Hollywood screenwriter whose life enters a downward spiral that brings him to a screenwriting teaching job at a remote university. He falls in love with one of his students and becomes invested in all their lives. The movie has a stellar cast (Hugh Grant, Marisa Tomei, JK Simmons) and it seems interesting to see Hugh Grant in a role like this. The score is written by Clyde Lawrence and Cody Fitzgerald, both names new to me.

The start of the score is interesting. We hear just a couple of drum sticks beating raw and in a sooth rhythm. There’s no music during the first minute of “Paradise misplaced: Intro” and I get a taste of what will follow. A jazzy gust of music brings a fresh sound to my ears and I hope I’ll be able to enjoy it since I usually have a hard time connecting with jazz music.

So far so good though. “Binghampton Bound” is cool and lush and reminds me of 70s cop movies in a way. The bass is smooth and this is a rhythm I can groove to. The kind of jazz that Clyde Lawrence and Cody Fitzgerald bring forth is accessible and infectious and I feel refreshed when I listen to it. When it gets moody, like in “Porch” it’s still enjoyable and unpretentious. “Mark Funkenberg” is where it gets funky and I can’t help but swaying in my chair while listening to it. The big band sound is fun and I could never get bored with a score like this.

My favorite pieces are the ones that start with a solo bass and move a little slower. I can feel them better and they sound light and feel good. The composers do a good job of setting an atmosphere and I almost can’t tell that this movie has dramatic accents. Or maybe it doesn’t and I read too much into the story. I like what I hear in “Mid-term”. That’s a place I’d want to be in, that a mood I’d want to feel. It has the vibe of the last fortnight of college before the summer vacation.

This is what I love about this score. Whether it feels like the beginning of summer or the beginning of autumn (this is what “Return” makes me feel) the innocence and positive attitude of Clyde Lawrence and Cody Fitzgerald’s composition brings a smile to my face. There’s no drama in the music, no exaggeration, just everyday feelings I can related to. Don’t expect fireworks in “The rewrite”, don’t expect to be moved or stirred. Just be ready to feel charmed and refreshed. Nothing more than a ray of light…

Cue rating: 73 / 100

Total minutes of excellence: 2 / 33

Album excellence: 7%

Highlights:

Mid-term

About the author

Mihnea Manduteanu

I have been listening to film music for 25 years and writing about it since 2014. I've written over 1000 reviews and I can't imagine myself doing anything else. I am also a member of IFMCA (International Film Music Critics Association).

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