Classic Movie Themes: Krull
After the success of his nautically themed score for Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan, composer James Horner was very much in demand. Columbia pictures subsequently hired him over the likes of John Williams and Jerry Goldsmith to compose the soundtrack for Krull (1983). The movie was to be the studios flagship fantasy title and their most expensive production to date, costing $50 million. Unfortunately, the curious mixture of science fiction and fantasy failed to find an audience and was a box office failure. The film most certainly does have flaws. The screenplay was constantly re-written and the lead actor, Ken Marshall is somewhat underwhelming. Yet the production and costume design are outstanding and the movie is beautifully shot.
The film score composed by James Horner and performed by The London Symphony Orchestra and the Ambrosian Singers, is vibrant and rousing. It's swashbuckling approach is very reminiscent of the works of Erich Wolfgang Korngold. It features vibrant fanfares, a sumptuous love theme and an avant-garde use of string instruments to represent some of the more fantastical elements of the story. Krull represents some of the composers finest work from his early years with its rich and exuberant motifs. It is certainly one of the movies greatest assets and again shows the importance a films soundtrack in underpinning and reflecting the on-screen narrative.