City Slickers

An enterteining comedy that starts with Billy Crystal in the spanish popular fest of San Fermines and getting a bull hitting his ass!. Jack Palance won an Oscar and did a great show when he got his award. Perhaps Crystal's roll as executive producer had to be decisive for the election of Shaiman, just finished is great score for Misery. A right choice. The main titles suppose a whole declaration of terms from the author, something that will be a trademark along his later work: sounds condense in less than three minutes of western in a Bernstein vein, ragtime music, a crafty waltz, a shot, and many more. Everything to a dizzy pace and going on from the most burlesque tone to the most exciting sound with an amazing facility. A prodigious exercise of styles and mastery, and only the top of a creative iceberg of whose evolution and desire of overcoming we would be witnesses along his following works. As good work from Shaiman, the score goes beyond a pure sound of western, finding space for comical, sentimental passages, the incorporation of a gospel choir and a song (performed by James Ingram) which fault is that presents a truly commercial and conventional sound and not any style relation with the movie, but that points clear the musical origin of the composer.

The compact disc release is too brief, and leaving unreleased a lot of music that remains unpublished for the listener. A complete edition of the soundtrack would present among other much material, the following kind of music
-A fanfare in a spanish sound for the tradition of San Fermines. As well as an incidental passages for piano and tambourines for the protagonists running among the bulls.
-A "terrifying", tense theme with a sharp string that sounds in the appearances of a menacing Curly (Jack Palance), a roll that imposes respect into the main characters.
-Additional variants of some main themes.
-Source music that can be heard along the movie.

Definitively, an excellent composition, in a short cd release from Varese Sarabande. Its a luck that there is a great release for the sequel, that contains more music and new themes. In the production the labor stands out of orquestadores (and composers) of high entity, as Mark McKenzie and Hummie Mann. In view of the sensational result, the director Ron Underwood would return to Shaiman in several movies that we will analyze later.