Three-time Academy Award-winning composer Maurice Jarre (1924-2009) makes his debut on the Kritzerland label with a newly-announced two-for-one release of his scores to 1981’s Taps and 1970’s The Only Game in Town. Hollywood couldn’t help but take notice of the French-born Jarre when he scored director David Lean’s 1962 epic drama Lawrence of Arabia, and the Lean/Jarre collaboration was so successful that Jarre was asked to score each of Lean’s subsequent films. He won his first Oscar for Lawrence, and his subsequent two trophies were also for Lean films: 1965’s Doctor Zhivago and 1984’s A Passage to India. But Jarre, a nine-time nominee, also found time for other filmmakers. Two of these efforts for George Stevens (The Only Game in Town starring Elizabeth Taylor and Warren Beatty) and Harold Becker (Taps, with an ensemble including Tom Cruise, Sean Penn and Timothy Hutton) are joined together on one new CD from Kritzerland.
This high-profile release follows other recent Jarre discoveries from Intrada (Dreamscape, The Mackintosh Man, The Last Flight of Noah’s Ark, and Island at the Top of the World – the latter two resulting from the partnership between Intrada and The Walt Disney Company) and La-La Land (Jarre’s unused score to Jennifer 8). While Taps has been previously released on CD by Varese Sarabande, the limited edition was a quick sellout. Jarre’s score to The Only Game in Town makes its world premiere soundtrack release here. This limited edition of 1,000 copies is due to ship the last week of December from Kritzerland, but pre-orders made directly with the label usually arrive one to five weeks earlier.
After the jump: you’ll find the full information on Taps/The Only Game in Town courtesy Kritzerland’s full press release, plus the track listing and pre-order link!
In 1981, Maurice Jarre was hired to score Taps, a Twentieth Century-Fox film, directed by Harold Becker, starring George C. Scott and a pretty incredible array of up and coming young talent, including Timothy Hutton, Sean Penn and Tom Cruise. Taps was a hit with both critics and audiences – a taut and tense story of a group of cadets who take over their military academy instead of allowing it to be closed. The acting from everyone was superb, and Becker’s direction of the screenplay by Robert Mark Kamen, James Lineberger and Daryl Ponsican (from the novel Father Sky by Devery Freeman) is simple and assured. Tying it all together is Jarre’s wonderful score. Many cues are sparsely scored for trumpet, piano and percussion to excellent effect, and the other cues are used carefully throughout the film and help give the film its tension, emotion and texture.
A decade earlier, Jarre was hired to compose the score for what would be director George Stevens’ final film – the 1970 romantic comedy/drama The Only Game in Town. The two powerhouse stars were Elizabeth Taylor (reunited with Stevens, with whom she’d worked to great success in A Place in the Sun and Giant) and Warren Beatty (his first film after Bonnie and Clyde).
The resulting film was not successful with either critics or audiences. It opened, had a brief run, and disappeared. But all these years later, thanks to the recent Twilight Time Blu-ray release, we get to finally reassess the film, which, as it turns out, is pretty entertaining – not perfect by any means, but with some wonderful dialogue, star-power performances from Taylor and Beatty, and George Stevens’ usual elegant direction. For the film, Maurice Jarre came up with a truly great score. Beginning with a lonely trumpet leading directly into an exciting and jazzy “Vegas” feel, leading back to a melancholy duet for sax and trumpet (the film is all about loneliness, connections missed or made, and has a pervasive feeling of melancholy), Jarre’s score complements the movie perfectly.
Taps was previously released on CD on Varese Sarabande as a limited edition that sold out quickly. This is the premiere release for The Only Game in Town – we present all the cues that were usable, about twenty minutes’ worth, but, thankfully, it’s most of the score and is fully representative of the cues Jarre wrote.
You can order this two-for-one soundtrack release just below!
Maurice Jarre, Taps/The Only Game in Town: Original Motion Picture Soundtracks (Kritzerland KR-20027-3, 2013)
- Main Title
- Indians on TV
- Black Jack March/Semper Fidelis March
- We’re Here
- Defense Preparation
- One Moment to Comply
- Scipio March
- What Will the General Do?
- I Cried for 15 Minutes
- Take One Step Forward
- The National Guard
- Mordant Tones
- Tanks Approaching
- Tapped Out
- I Don’t Wanna Die
- We’ve Won the War
- Black Jack March (Reprise)
- End Credits
- Main Title Alternate (Bonus Track)
- The More I See You (Harry Warren/Mack Gordon)
- Love is a Many-Splendored Thing (Sammy Fain/Paul Francis Webster)
- Taps Disco
- The Only Game in Town
- The Big Gamble
- Do You Really Want to Know
- Dice Table
- End Title and Cast
Tracks 1-22 from Taps, 1981 – previously released on Varese Sarabande VCL 1110 1116, 2010
Tracks 23-26 are bonus tracks from Taps – previously released on Varese Sarabande VCL 1110 1116, 2010
Tracks 27-32 from The Only Game in Town, 1970 – previously unreleased