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Soundtrack review: The young Messiah (John Debney – 2016)

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Soundtrack review: The young Messiah (John Debney – 2016)


“The Young Messiah” is an upcoming American biblical drama film directed by Cyrus Nowrasteh and co-written by Betsy Giffen Nowrasteh and Nowrasteh, based on the novel Christ the Lord: Out of Egypt by Anne Rice. The film stars Adam Greaves-Neal, Sean Bean, David Bradley, Lee Boardman, Jonathan Bailey, and David Burke. The film revolves around a fictional interpretation of a seven-year-old Jesus, who tries to discover the truth about his life when he returns to Nazareth from Egypt. Told from his childhood perspective, it follows young Jesus as he grows into his religious identity. Now I know this is a religious movie but I can’t help but notice how both Ned Stark and Walder Frey from Game of Thrones star in it. The score was written by the man who gave us a score I will never forget, “The passion of the Christ”: John Debney. I’ve just listened to another bible inspired score a few days ago, “Risen” by Roque Banos and it was gorgeous.

Even if I know that probably every score for a movie telling a story from that time and place will have that special sound, with the ethnic instruments and suave flow, the discrete choirs and the emotion, I will never have enough of it. This is a sound that soothes my soul and caresses my heart and the main theme here simply makes me want to feel a gust of wind on my face and the simple dust of those times in my throat. Gentle, breezy but going straight to my heart, “The young Messiah theme” is simply breathtaking.

Then my breath starts acting differently; it’s not regular anymore. Sometimes my heart races like when “Jesus heals Eleazer”; other times it quiets down, other time it longs. This score touches me on many different levels and in many ways. Whereas the score for “Passion” was epic in the way it played on the emotions, in “The young Messiah” John Debney is quieter and more reflective. The music is very spiritual and I can’t get enough of bathing in it. I listen to “Mary and Joseph / Don’t you see him” and I feel powerless and emotional.

When it’s time for action the score is just as powerful. John Debney knows how to write the entire specter of feelings and scenes and I want this beautiful musical tapestry to be endless. A flawless score like this is a treasure to be kept close. The music is a comfortable and arm close bringing shelter to a soul in need. I still hear the echoes of that innocent flute and I feel the need to close my eyes. A shiver passes through my body and I want to listen to the score again. This is what “The young Messiah” leaves me with. There isn’t a second on this album that doesn’t make me feel something and this is what film music is all about. Listen to it, welcome it into your heart and tell me how it affected you…

Cue rating: 100 / 100

Total minutes of excellence: 70 / 70

Album excellence: 100%


The Young Messiah Theme

Alexandria Egypt

Salome Reminds Jesus

Jesus Heals Eleazer

Herod Is Dead

Mary And Joseph / Don’t You See Him

The Carved Camel

Jesus Encounters Romans

Severus Let’s Jesus’ Family Go

Harod Reprimands Severus

Jesus Heals Cleopus

Rape Victim

Sister Come To Nazareth

Not Just A Child / Crucifixes

Reveal Of Nazareth

The Messiah Will Save Us

A Son Named Jesus

Jerusalem For Passover

Travel To Jerusalem

Mary Presents Baby Jesus

Jesus Leaves Alone

He Wants Answers

He’s In The Temple

Herod’s Rage

The Blind Rabbi

Mary Reveals The Truth To Jesus / Jesus Talks To God


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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