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Mr. Magorium's Wonder Emporium (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)

Alexandre Desplat & Aaron Zigman

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Album Review

The score for the 2007 children's fantasy Mr. Magorium's Wonder Emporium teams composers Alexandre Desplat and Aaron Zigman, a yin-yang proposition that pairs the darker, more raucous sensibilities of the former and the lighter, more heart-tugging approach of the latter to fine effect. Although the liner notes fail to delineate which composer wrote what, it's fairly obvious that the more fantastical cues belong to Desplat and the more ethereal themes to Zigman, and given the limited stylistic and emotional palette of most contemporary film scores, the extremes of Mr. Magorium's Wonder Emporium make for a refreshing change of pace. That being said, however, the individual themes originate from such different perspectives that the score as a whole lacks cohesion — at nearly one hour in length, it's a sometimes frustrating listening experience, and much less than the sum of its myriad parts.

Biography

Born: 23 August 1961 in Paris, France

Genre: Soundtrack

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

French composer Alexandre Desplat is the son of a Greek mother and a French father who met in the U.S. while both were attending the University of California at Berkeley, married in San Francisco, and settled in France. He began studying the piano at age five, later switching to trumpet and then flute. Fascinated by both music and film, he decided to pursue a career as a composer of movie scores. Starting with Ki Lo Sa? in 1985, his scores for television and film had reached a total of 100 by 2007....
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