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Music Review: 'The Jackal: Music From and Inspired by the Motion Picture' and 'Mortal Kombat: Annihilation — Original Motion Picture Soundtrack TVT'

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The Jackal

type:
Movie
Current Status:
In Season
mpaa:
R
runtime:
112 minutes
performer:
Richard Gere, Bruce Willis, Tess Harper, Sidney Poitier, J.K. Simmons, Diane Venora
director:
Michael Caton-Jones
distributor:
Universal
author:
Chuck Pfarrer
genre:
Drama, ActionAdventure, Mystery and Thriller

We gave it a B

The jukebox jury’s still out on whether electronica is the next big whatever, but one trend is already clear: It’s the genre of choice for soundtracks. This year alone, the throbbing rush of various techno offshoots has whooshed through major-studio films like The Saint and 187, and the techno-color wave continues on the soundtracks to The Jackal and Mortal Kombat: Annihilation.

The Jackal is a particularly neon-lit sign of changing times: A year ago, could anyone have imagined that the theme to a Bruce Willis thriller would be by British DJ L.T.J. Bukem? Bukem’s ”Demon’s Theme” features his usual blend of hopped-up breakbeats and New Age synths; along with similarly elegant tracks by Goldie and Moby, it transports instrumental scores into the computer age. Black Grape and Fatboy Slim, meanwhile, contribute kicky rave-party high jinks. A few crass attempts at arena-rock techno are buzzkills, but Goldie’s clever drum-and-bass remix of Bush’s ”Swallowed” splinters the track into jagged shards, and Massive Attack’s electro-dub ”Superpredators (Metal Postcard)” comes off like a funky Jamaican videogame.

One of the most grating tracks on The Jackal — Lunatic Calm’s robo-sleaze ”Leave U Far Behind” — also appears on Mortal Kombat: Annihilation. The first Kombat movie pioneered the use of electronica in film — what better music for a flick based on computerized massacres? Alas, too much of its sequel’s soundtrack is devoted to generic, bludgeoning metal-techno. Only a few cuts, like the sirenlike wail of Libra Presents Taylor’s ”Anomaly (Calling Your Name),” offer relief. Save a few quarters for some Advil. The Jackal: B; Mortal Kombat: Annihilation: C-

Various Artists
The Jackal: Music From and Inspired by the Motion Picture
MCA

Various Artists
Mortal Kombat: Annihilation — Original Motion Picture Soundtrack
TVT

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