Welcome back to THE HORROR JAR, the column where we look at lists pertaining to movies, particularly horror movies. Today it’s Part 2 of our look at the career of composer Jerry Goldsmith.
In Part 1, we looked at films Goldsmith scored between the years of 1957 and 1983.
On to Part 2!
And again, this is just a partial list of Goldsmith’s 258 movie credits, concentrating mostly on his genre films. We continue the list now, picking up where we left off, in 1984.
GREMLINS (1984) – No water, no food after midnight, and no bright lights, but plenty of Jerry Goldsmith music in this horror comedy by director Joe Dante.
SUPERGIRL (1984) – Before the TV show, there was this movie, starring the lovely Helen Slater as Supergirl. Slater actually appears on the new SUPERGIRL television series as Eliza Danvers. Pretty bad movie, in spite of the presence of Faye Dunaway, Peter O’Toole, and Mia Farrow.
RAMBO: FIRST BLOOD PART II (1985)- Following up on his work on Sylvester Stallone’s FIRST BLOOD (1982), Goldsmith provides the music again in this bigger and badder sequel.
LEGEND (Director’s Cut) (1985) – Ridley Scott’s fantasy fairy tale about a youth (Tom Cruise) battling a demon (Tim Curry). Goldsmith’s music appears only in the re-issued director’s cut. Tangerine Dream provided the electronic music in the theatrical release.
INNERSPACE (1987) – Dennis Quaid gets miniaturized and injected into the body of Martin Short in this action comedy by director Joe Dante, a variation of FANTASTIC VOYAGE (1966).
RAMBO III (1988) – completes the original Sylvester Stallone Rambo trilogy.
LEVIATHAN (1989) – Underwater monster adventure starring Peter Weller and Richard Crenna.
WARLOCK (1989) – Horror fantasy starring Julian Sands as a— warlock.
STAR TREK V: THE FINAL FRONTIER (1989) – Goldsmith’s second trip to the STAR TREK universe, after scoring the first movie in the series, STAR TREK – THE MOTION PICTURE (1979). This is the one directed by William Shatner and it’s usually on fan’s “worst of” lists when talking about the movie series, but other than some silliness early on, this one isn’t half bad and actually gets better as it goes along. 1989 was another busy year for Goldsmith as he wrote the music scores for four movies this year.
TOTAL RECALL (1990) – Provides the music for this Arnold Schwarnegger vehicle about a man with a virtual identity crisis on Mars. Directed by Paul Verhoeven. Based on a short story by Philip K. Dick.
THE VANISHING (1993)- Abduction thriller starring Kiefer Sutherland and Jeff Bridges. Not as good as the original Dutch/French version of THE VANISHING (1988), the film on which this was based.
THE SHADOW (1994)- Alec Baldwin is The Shadow. Meh.
THE RIVER WILD (1994) – Thriller with Meryl Streep protecting her famly from a pair of baddies on a raging river. Kinda exciting back in the day.
THE GHOST AND THE DARKNESS (1996) – Adventure tale starring Michael Douglas and Val Kilmer about the hunt for two maneating lions.
STAR TREK: FIRST CONTACT (1996)- Second and best of the STAR TREK NEXT GENERATION movies has Captain Picard (Patrick Stewart) and the rest of his Enterprise crew taking on their arch enemies, The Borg.
L.A. CONFIDENTIAL (1997) – Classic thriller about police corruption in 1950s Los Angeles. Starring Kevin Spacey, Russell Crowe, Guy Pearce, and Kim Basinger.
STAR TREK: INSURRECTION (1998) – Third Next Generation STAR TREK film and by far the quietest of the series. Picard and company discover a Federation plot against a peaceful planetary people, and that’s not okay with them! Like watching a mediocre episode of the series. No sense of cinematic urgency at all.
THE MUMMY (1999)- Big budget re-imagining of Universal’s THE MUMMY by writer/director Stephen Sommers. Starring Brendan Fraser, this one plays like an Indiana Jones flick rather than a horror movie. Fun, but as a horror film, it’s ultimately disappointing.
THE HAUNTING (1999)- Dreadful remake of the 1963 film THE HAUNTING, itself based on the Shirley Jackson novel The Haunting of Hill House. With Liam Neeson, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Owen Wilson, and Bruce Dern. Pretty awful.
HOLLOW MAN (2000)- Speaking of pretty awful, this re-imagining of THE INVISIBLE MAN starring Kevin Bacon and Elisabeth Shue is as awful as a horror movie can get. Directed by Paul Verhoeven.
STAR TREK: NEMESIS (2002) – Final Next Generation STAR TREK film and one of its best, although that’s not saying much since the STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION movies were never as good as the STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION TV show. This one features Tom Hardy and Ron Perlman in the cast.
LOONEY TUNES: BACK IN ACTION (2003) – Goldsmith’s final feature film music score, this goofy movie features Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, and friends intermingling with live action actors, including Brendan Fraser, Jenna Elfman, Steve Martin, and Timothy Dalton.
The movies listed here and in Part 1 of this blog post are only a partial listing and do not include all of Goldsmith’s remarkable 258 music score credits. In addition to these movies, Jerry Goldsmith also wrote the music for many TV shows including THE TWILIGHT ZONE (1959-61), THRILLER (1960-62), THE MAN FROM U.N.C.L.E. (1964-68), POLICE STORY (1973-79), THE WALTONS (1972-81), STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION (1987-94), and STAR TREK: VOYAGER (1995-2001), to name just a few.
His was a long and varied career, and if you watch lots of movies, you can’t help but be familiar with his music, as his career spanned five decades.
Jerry Goldsmith passed away on July 21, 2004 at the age of 75 after a battle with cancer.
Jerry Goldsmith, February 10, 1929- July 21, 2004.
Thanks for reading everybody!