Film scores

Soundtrack review: Kindergarten Cop 2 (Jake Monaco – 2016)

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“Kindergarten Cop 2” is a 2016 American comedy film starring Dolph Lundgren and directed by Don Michael Paul. It is the sequel to the 1990 comedy film Kindergarten Cop starring Arnold Schwarzenegger. A federal agent must go undercover as a kindergarten teacher, to recover a missing flash drive from the Federal Witness Protection Program. To help him with his mission is Agent Sanders, his partner. The original movie is a classic and one of those Arnie comedies which I loved. That one had a score by Randy Edelman who was magical in the 80s. Jake Monaco took the helm for this sequel.

I don’t review comedic scores very often because I have a hard time connecting with the music for silly films; it might be good or even great but sometimes it’s just too happy for my taste. The nostalgia brought on by the first film and by Dolph Lundgren being in this one helped me get closer to this album. The main theme is a catchy electric guitar variation which is fun and enjoyable. This gives me hope for the rest of the score.

The constant presence of the electric guitar as a light musical subtext for whatever is going on in the movie helps with the listening experience. The sound is funky enough to give the score a 70s cop film feel. “Alarming activity” goes even further and pleases me with a great action vibe fueled by the electric guitar and rock percussion. I am warming up to this charming score because of this retro vibe I really like.

In the past year the spy genre has known quite a resurgence and the scores have been varied and usually very good. Jake Monaco chose to treat the story as hand as if it was a fun spy movie instead of a silly comedy and wrote a score to match. Cues like “Peanuts” make me groove in my chair and want to wear stretch pants. This score takes a walk down Electric Avenue and feels as cool as they come in some moments.

“Kindergarten Cop 2” is a light score which will please 70s funk nostalgic. The music is fresh and enjoyable and the retro vibe is charming. The composer doesn’t step out of those boundaries and this gives the score a nice identity. I’m sure Jake Monaco has a lot of fun writing this one and fun was has listening to it as well.

Cue rating: 77 / 100

Total minutes of excellence: 6 / 39

Album excellence: 13%

Highlights:

Alarming activity

Hunts Bay Academy

 

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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