Incredible Soundtrack #6: Edward Scissorhands (Elfman)

The music attached to a film creates the environment, I believe, moreso than the literal environment depicted through the visuals…

Danny Elfman, if I’m honest, I’m not a big fan of. Half the time he has that samey Men-In-Black/Spiderman music used to open films – the whole chunk-chun-chunk-chunk thing and thats a little frustrating. But he has been used multiple times and, the first time you hear the Men In Black theme or his ‘hero’ theme, it does sound pretty cool. Intrestingly, he has also composed other themes that are a far call from this style – namely The Simpsons opening-credits music and the multiple scores he has composed for Tim Burton, including The Corpses Bride, Sleepy Hollow and – my personal favourite – Edward Scissorhands.

Interestingly, the soundtrack is split into two acts – ‘Edward Meets The World’ and ‘Poor Edward’. This corresponds with the film, but I don’t think adds very much to the soundtrack. Infact, my final choice of song, though placed firmly in the ‘Poor Edward’ feels like quite the opposite. At any rate, lets get stuck straight into the three choices:

7. Edward Meets The World: Ice Dance – this is the most memorable theme. It is in equal-part full of wonder and amazement and yet still childish in true fairytale form. You literally feel you are being gently lifted into this alteranate gothic universe which is, rather than dark and morbid, it is heavenly and beautiful.

9. Edward Meets The World: Edwardo The Barber – The more playful side to Elfman comes through on this track. The fact that his Simpsons theme soon followed is no suprise. The track shifts gear as, in the film, Depp’s Edward Scissorhands creates different masterpieces of women’s hair. 

15. Poor Edward: The Grand Finale – This is primarily a reprise of the Ice Dance, but this time it is muhc more sweeping and grand – opening the theme to include a much broader range of instruments. The entire orchestra, rather than a chorus, bringing the theme to the forefront as if to ensure that we know that, what is beautiful, is Edward himself.

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  1. I think the soundtrack is a HUGE part of what keeps this film from being horror or creepy movie experience. It keeps it light and gentler than it might otherwise be.

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