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Soundtrack review: Maggie (David Wingo – 2015)

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“Maggie” sounds like an intriguing and compelling movie. It’s on my list of must see and I am very curious to watch what people are saying it’s Arnold Schwarzenegger’s most demanding and rewarding role so far. It’s the story of a dad and his little girl (and this hits very close to home since I have a baby girl of my own) in the aftermath of a zombie apocalypse. Abigail Breslin plays the daughter who is slowly turning into a zombie under her father’s eyes. David Wingo wrote the score and I noticed him last year with his compositon for “The great invisible”.

The score draws me into its subdued and uncomfortably chili atmosphere right away. That somber cello can’t miss for me and whenever I h ear a cello heavy cue that’s properly done I am hooked. I embrace that darkness and I easily find my way inside it. There is a current of minimalism in film music lately which I am very attracted to. I thrive on this kind of music, it speaks to me and it makes me richer emotionally .David Wingo had an idea for “Maggie” and went with it. I don’t have to know the script to realize from the music that this is a very intimate story. At least musically this doesn’t concern the outside world and its horrors and troubles. The sound is contained and it goes deep. This score plays the emotions of a man, his sadness, his inner demons and the terror of the inevitable. I adore a score like this because I can relate to it; I can use it; I can reflect on it and it’s one of the most rewarding hours I can spend listening to something.

The music is so beautiful that it gets me misty eyed in some moments. When I hear a cue like “No answers” I just want to go and hug my baby girl and tell her that she is safe in my arms. David Wingo uses the kind of slowed down string sounds that are so present usually in Nick Cave and Warren Ellis’ scores for the more atmospheric moments and regular, intimate, solo string sections of the more emotional parts. Strings come in all forms depending on the emotions the composers wants to express: acoustic guitar, violin, cello… Each note is a unique snowflake falling on a fresh blanked of virgin snow on which I walk alone with my thoughts.

“Maggie” will go in the special box of snow globe scores that set a frozen and memorable atmosphere I would never want to see altered. David Wingo wrote one of the most surprising and beautiful scores of the year for me and I will rush to watch the movie now. Do not miss this score if you are in need of a beautiful minimalistic and hypnotic composition which will leave deep and permanent echoes inside you. I will keep “Maggie” close because there will be a lot of moments when I will want to listen to it again.

Cue rating: 100 / 100

Total minutes of excellence: 49 / 49

Album excellence: 100%

Highlights:

Maggie Opening

Hospital

Drive Home

Home Coming

Getting Started

Nathan And Julia

No Answers

Kids Leave

Swinging

Burning Crops

Bonnie

Anderson House

Campfire

The Bank

Doctor Visit

Maggie And Trent

Maggots

Taking Trent

Killing The Fox

The Garden

Maggie And Wade

 

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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