Once a pioneer in fusing cutting edge electronics with traditional orchestrations, composer Hans Zimmer, sits comfortably among the top hotshot Hollywood go-to guys. His roster of blockbuster scores include the films, “Rain Man,” “Days of Thunder,” “The Lion King,” “Batman Begins,” “The Da Vinci Code” and “Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End.” The problem is, his scores just sound like bloated old turds hitting a wet diaper now.
(Left: Jude Law, Robert Downey Jr., and Rachel McAdams in “Sherlock Holmes”)
It wouldn’t be a stretch to pin blame on Hans Zimmer for the formulaic sound of most big budget film scores. It’s not just sad moments calling for melancholy strings and intense moments calling for pounding beats. Every shot, every look, every choreographed action needs a big overproduced sound, just in case you’ve been lobotomized recently.
Obviously, many of the films he’s scored are not meant to be works of art. And some of the Director’s he’s worked for are cultural terrorists in suits. Sometimes, both are the case. “Pearl Harbor” for example should be shot into the Sun and erased from human memory (we already have the mediocre “Tora! Tora! Tora!” it’s action scenes are lifted from almost play by play anyway). But, regardless of his employers, his scores are always the same overbearing cacophony.
It looks like Guy Ritchie’s “Sherlock Holmes,” which otherwise looks like a good time, is set to be completely blown out by this Teutonic electronic flatulence. I hope Ritchie scales it back during the unfolding mystery, but his actiony reinvention of this classic tale does not bode well for subtlety.