A comedy directed by Michael Lehmann (Hudson Hawk, Airheads, The Truth About Cats and Dogs or 40 Days and 40 Nights). Co-written and produced by Billy Crystal, he is an agent lost in Romania who finds a giant and tries to turn him into a movie star.
The movie didn’t get any premire in some countries, so it was directly released into video in some places.
The soundtrack included a few themes from composers as Hamlisch or Gershwin, but the original score get the main musical role on screen. This music is still unreleased. Among his music, Shaiman composed a couple of sweet love themes, full of nostalgia, and I can assure you that this two themes are among the best in all his career, specially one of them. It’s a type of lovely sound that will get a full treatment on masterpieces as Simon Birch. Another side of the score is the comical. They are themes that goes from the classic mickey-mousing from the composer to themes with a jazzy flavour with also a ethnic (european) flavour. Romania and even a monastery gives the chance to use this kind of instruments and a jewish sound, using a violin or a organ). There is also a spectacular sound for those filming scenes, in a large tone that reminds us great scores as The Addams Family. The result is a brilliant, very complete and varied work, where you can find some rare tunes, as a very "urban" music, in which there are piano, clarinet, echoes of a acoustic guitar… and that make us wish urgently an official sountrack release.
This great (but unknown) score can be summarized as this:
1. Main Theme. Funny, merger of jazz and ethnic sound, because of the location of great part of the plot in Romania, besides the references to the jewish family of the main character (again that family obsession for the food, as on that movie called Mr. Saturday Night). The use of the violin stands out. This theme is adapted in many occasions. And his main notes serve to conceive a comical secondary theme.
2. Incidental music for the accident, rescue and the finding of the giant. It changes totally in his tone. Exciting and of very large sound for orchestra, it ends in curious resources, as the celestial choirs when the protagonist is thinking about being rescued by God or the almost terrifying passages for the moment of the meeting with the giant (Max).
3. Music for the monastery. They are brief passages of ethnic tone and identical instrumentation, emphasizing the organ, used sometimes as comical resource.
4. Comical incidental music. In this category we can include numerous tunes of underlined comic score, including notes of the main theme that the composer adapted for this kind of score.
5. Love theme #1. It is one of two beautiful love themes in the movie. It appears in the relationship between Max and the protagonist, by what it might be considered to be a tender and sweet theme for their friendship, but as the movie advances this theme appears close to the love theme #2 (we mention it later), so that in other moments its used also to refer to Max's platonic love. This one is one of the best themes in the whole Shaiman's career.
6. Love theme #2. Another beautiful theme. This one, together with the previous one, suppose two big jewels, not only of the soundtrack, but of all the movies of the composer. Both themes are appellants in different adjustments, with obliged use of the piano (100 % Shaiman). An exciting "action" variant is curious, used only one time, under a totally different orchestration.
7. Other incidental tunes. There are exciting tracks composed for the filming of the movie, as well as the own soundtrack when the protagonists see it at the cinema. An atypical theme stands out with regard to the rest of the work. It appears into the final section of the movie, and its sound does not guard relation with the rest of the work: clarinet, echoes of acoustic guitar, piano (similar played as some tracks from Ghosts of the Past) and a curious base.
Its a real shame that this score stays forgotten, more when it contains two great love themes, that are part of the best in the whole work of the author