TV

Soundtrack review: Duell der Brueder (Frederik Wiedman – 2016)

“Duell der Brueder: Die geschichte von Adidas un Puma” (in English “Duel of the brothers; the history of Adidas and Puma” is an RTL TV event about the two German brothers who started two of the most famous sports clothing companies ever. I’ve always been fascinated with this story and with the fact that they were actually brothers so I’m interested in seeing this movie. The brothers started together but during World War II politics and paranoia made them argue and they eventually split the company, becoming bitter rivals. The score was written by Frederik Wiedman.
I usually like Freddie’s scores because I always hear the joy of composing in them. He is a film music fan before being a composer and he writes music that always has heart and meaning. The opening titles “Endspiel und Main Title Duell der Brüder” could have been generic or just used to set up the rest of the score but instead I already get a beautiful theme that invites me into the story with a couple of optimistic and joyful rolling piano motifs.
As the score progresses the music reaches the proper balance between discreet and emotional. Butterflies such as the one minute violin interlude “Adi in der Werkstatt” spring every now and then and make the score even more beautiful. It’s not like I was expecting a normal score from one of my favorite composers but I am still smiling very happy as I discover carefully written details in almost every cue, be they a quiet reflective motif or a piece of music full of youthful stride.
My favorite parts are the melodic take offs which make me think of jumping freely from a ridge. “Ich will nur Gold” is such a moment that starts with the violin and then just explodes into a sunny celebration. I understand the music, it speaks to me. There are times during “Duel of the brothers” when I get Thomas Newman nostalgia. Freddie’s sound from this score takes me back to the poet of film music summers even if the piano was his usual brush of choice.
When a composer channels his inner Thomas Newman don’t expect anything heavy or obtrusive from the music. Expect something light yet meaningful, expect moments that sparkle and moments that are just relaxing even if you will only remember how they make you feel. As any beautiful summer day, also expect shadows that throw a little grey in there in cues like “Ein paar kleine Schuhe”. I appreciate these moments the most because I am built to connect more with quieter bits. All in all it was a score that shows me that Frederik Wiedman is at his best no matter what the story might be.

Cue rating: 87 / 100
Total minutes of excellence: 22 / 54
Album excellence: 42%

Highlights:
Endspiel und Main Title Duell der Brüder
Adi in der Werkstatt
Du und ich
Ich will nur Gold
Ein Paar kleine Schuhe
Kinder und Soldaten
Zusammenbruch
Neue Wege
Verzeihung
Das Wunder von Bern

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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