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Soundtrack Review

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Original Motion Picture Soundtrack


Composers: Antoni Komasa-Lazarkiewicz and Mary Komasa
Label: MovieScore Media
RRP: £13.99
Release Date: 23 April 2021

MovieScore Media release the soundtrack to the movie Charlatan. The film, from the Czech Republic, tells the life story of well-known Czech healer Jan Mikolášek who diagnosed and healed people using his intuition and his familiarity with herbs. As he healed not only poor but also many well-known people, including Czechoslovak President, Antonín Zápotocký, his methods got a thorough investigation by the Communist regime...

Antoni Komasa-Lazarkiewicz and Mary Komasa's score for Charlatan is eerie and disorientating. In a lot of ways it reminded me of a weird hybrid of styles that I'd previously heard in Thomas Newman's score for The Shawshank Redemption and Howard Shore's work on Dead Ringers.

Talking about the music, Komasa-Lazarkiewic said: "The score to Charlatan keeps more secret than it reveals. The challenge was to keep it painfully restrained and yet full of paradoxical, contradictory emotions, hidden undercurrents, questions and exclamations. The stiffness and rawness of the motives is counterbalanced by the inner life of each note, with every strike of the bow, every phrase becoming a piece of its own. We wanted the listener to be able to look at this music through a magnifying glass and suddenly realize, how much vitality, energy and fragility there can be inside of it."

I don't think there's many that can argue with Komasa-Lazarkiewic's views on the score and it's certainly obvious that the composers achieved what they set out to do. It's a beautifully rich and varied score, but those who don't enjoy unsettling, eerie soundtracks might find this a little unnerving.


Darren Rea

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