Journey to Perfection:  The Secret of THE TOUCH - includes 5.1 Soundtrack by Basil Poledouris

 

 

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The Touch by Basil Poledouris

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Touch (Soundtrack) by Basil Poledouris

The Touch
Journey to Perfection
(DVD)
Composed by Basil Poledouris
Han Entertainment Ltd

Rating: 7/10

Buy The Touch by Basil Poledouris  from Amazon.com

 

Listen to this soundclip of THE TOUCHLegend of the Touch
(417 kb)

Listen to this soundclip of THE TOUCHThe Heart of Dun Huang
(384 kb)

Listen to this soundclip of THE TOUCHI'll Never Leave You
(391 kb)

 

 

THE TOUCH could be a surprising listen for some.  The score is a interesting blend of orchestral and synthesized elements, of western and eastern instruments, and of contemporary and classical ideas.

Journey to Perfection:  The Secret of THE TOUCH - includes 5.1 Soundtrack by Basil PoledourisYou Touch, You Buy!
Review by Christopher Coleman


In recent years, composer Basil Poledouris has all but fallen off the musical map... and much to the dismay of many film music fans.  One of Poledouris' most recent projects, which stems all the way back to 2002, was for THE TOUCH.  While there was a limited soundtrack release made available in 2003, there hasn't been anything readily available besides outrageously priced bootlegs and poor quality mp3s since.

THE TOUCH was co-produced by its star, Michelle Yeoh, and directed by Peter Pau.  Both names are well recognized especially within Asian cinema and the addition of Basil Poledouris helped to garner a little more attention for the film in the West.  In the end; however, the film's reported $6,000,000 at the box office didn't come close to matching its budget.  And since 2003, the film's official site has been taken down, although an official Japanese site exists as the film only premiered in Japan in 2005.  Sadly, along with the site's disappearance went most of the film's merchandise, including Basil Poledouris' score.

Along comes Han Entertainment's release DVD release JOURNEY TO PERFECTION: THE SECRET OF THE TOUCH in April 2006. This DVD (region 3) release contains the film's trailers, behind-the-scenes-photos, and "making of" documentaries, but what is most appealing about his release is that it presents Basil Poledouris' engaging score...and in Dolby Digital 5.1.  Now, in an age where complete soundtracks can be downloaded for $10 or less, is Basil Poledouris score for THE TOUCH worth the price of an entire DVD?  Well that all depends.

First, if you consider yourself a "collector" of film music, then my answer is a resounding "Yes!"  If you weren't among the crowd who jumped in and bought the limited soundtrack release back in 2002/03, then this release is great opportunity for you to get a legitimate copy of the music...get it in superior sound quality...and more of it! Think of it as a wonderfully recorded CD with a ton of bonus material.

Second, if you are a fan of Basil Poledouris, the answer is still a resounding "Yes!"  The sheer fact that Poledouris simply hasn't done much in the last few years makes this a great opportunity for you as well.  If you are a fan of Poledouris' music, THE TOUCH will hardly disappoint as it is very much in tune with the composers latter (and more scarce) works.

This brings me to the third, and probably largest, group reading this review.  If you are not a "serious" collector or president of your local chapter of the Basil Poledouris Fan Club, is this release worth getting?  Again, I have to say, "Yes."  But with a touch (pun very much intended) less enthusiasm as before.  THE TOUCH is a solid effort from the composer, no doubt.  Poledouris creates a memorable title theme which he employs liberally throughout the entire score.  It almost goes without saying that the score has a strong Asian influence, but like so many others, the score often sounds like a western score with Far East elements.  Some flavor of the huqin, probably the commonly used erhu, stands out as the clearest musical representation of the Orient here.  Still, there are a number of percussive instruments used which help add some cultural depth as well.  The most "traditionally eastern" track is easily "The Heart of Dun Huang."

THE TOUCH may be more "contemporary" than might expect or want.  I found myself surprised at the commonalities this score has with some of the better moments (yes there are a few) from CROCODILE DUNDEE IN LOS ANGELES...a comparison I certainly did not anticipate making.  Yet another not-oft-compared brand of music can also be made.  The opening track "Legend of the Touch" moves from a sweeping statement of the main theme into (and most appropriate to the film) a section that is clearly influenced by music from the many Cirque du Soleil productions.  This contemporary edge works well enough, although less dependence on the electronic elements would have helped to ground this score a bit more.  As a result, at times the score seems to bob along the surface leaving the listener wanting a bit more.

Now, if what you've read concerns you, take heart.  There are a number of tracks, particularly towards the end of the soundtrack, that truly show of Poledouris' ability to let the score soar such as: "The Monkey King Enthralls," "I'll Never Leave You,"  "I Believe," and "Time to Choose."  Each contains wonderfully orchestrated moments of tension, romance and flat-out action.

THE TOUCH could be a surprising listen for some.  The score is a interesting blend of orchestral and synthesized elements, of western and eastern instruments, of contemporary and classical ideas.  That's a lot to ask of a composer, yet Basil Poledouris pulls it off pretty well.  Collectors and fans of Poledouris have reason to rejoice that this score is now available on DVD and fans of good film music also should give strong consideration in picking this up as well.
 

IMPORTANT NOTE ABOUT THIS DVD
------------------------------------

This is a REGION 3 DVD so check to make sure your DVD player can play other region DVDs.

 

Got a comment?  Discuss this music here!


Track

Track Title Track Time  Rating
1 Legend of the Touch 2:16  ***
2 The Monkey King Enthralls 1:44  ****
3 The Lovable Thief 0:32  ***
4 The Heart of Dun Huang 1:36  ***
5 In the Heart of the Night 2:43  ***
6 Memories of Days Gone 3:40  ****
7 Trouble Under Blue Skies 5:32  ***
8 To the Rescue 0:51  **
9 Who will Know 1:40  ***
10 Glimpses Down the Path 2:11  ***
11 A Light Dimmed 2:31  ***
12 Farewell Kind Soul 1:48  ***
13 Healing of Hearts 3:20  ****
14 Through the Forest 3:12  ****
15 Secrets Revealed 4:23  ***
16 I'll Never Leave You 4:48  ****
17 Destiny Awaits 12:49  ****
18 I Believe 4:29  ****
19 Time to Choose 3:29  ***
20 The Touch (Vocal) 3:57  ***
  Total Running Time 67:41  

 

   

 

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