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The Imitation Game (Alexandre Desplat)

The Imitation Game Soundtrack Cover
The Imitation Game Soundtrack Cover

The Imitation Game Soundtrack by Alexandre Desplat (2014)

Get it:  If you like a score that uses heavy piano and strings and is intended to focus on another era of music

Don’t get it:  If you are hoping for a modern action or drama style score

From Sony Classical comes Alexandre Desplat’s latest soundtrack, this time for the film starring Benedict Cumberbatch and Keira Knightley called The Imitation Game.  The opening track, aptly titled, “The Imitation Game”, is very promising.  It is somewhat intense, but there is also an element of almost fantasy as well.  It gives the impression of darkness, but also a bit of human brilliance.  There’s a lot going on with the individual instruments, but they all combine together to make one smooth sound.

Desplat uses a strings and piano combo to make something both beautiful and slightly ominous at the same time.  Having said that, the ‘ominous’ factor may also be interpreted as mysterious or even full of wonder, depending on the context of the film.  There is not doubt that this score is from Desplat, his style and influence are easily identifiable.

Alexandre consistently uses a piano in the foreground very well.  Part of the reason that this OST is so intriguing and unique is because of how Desplat is able to somehow make orchestral instruments, specifically the piano, at times sound like electronic sounds.  This score is not action-packed in the way that modern movie-goers have gotten used to, but it definitely has action and is not boring at all.  It leans toward, overall, being more stirring than driving.  This is a fantastic soundtrack for creating an atmosphere, feelings, and emotions.

Some tracks, such as “Crosswords”, feel “airy” due to the piano/harp/strings combination.  Later, though, Desplat adds the use of bells to completely change the feel and direction of the score.  Mesmerizing is a very good word to describe this OST.  At some points, an understandable comparison may be made to James Horner’s score for A Beautiful Mind.  Having said that, don’t go into listening to it expecting something like that because it may ruin your first impression.  However, after listening to it, some people may feel comfortable making the comparison.

This is absolutely a good soundtrack from Desplat and a good job, too.  He obviously put some effort and real thought into creating this score.  When paired with the film, this score has the power to do amazing things, we’ll have to wait and see. 

Click here to preview the soundtrack from Yahoo! Music

Click here or here to shop for the soundtrack digitally

Click here to pre-order the CD soundtrack

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