Maverick | Randy Newman
Some of Hollywood’s biggest talents coalesced on this 1994 big-screen adaptation of the popular ‘60s era James Garner television series about the adventures and misadventures of a frontier gambler: stars Mel Gibson and Jodie Foster, Gibson’s “Lethal Weapon” director Richard Donner and Oscar-winning “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid” screenwriter William Goldman.
Skillfully juggling the film’s myriad tones and timbres, Oscar-winning composer Randy Newman paints a musical tapestry for “Maverick” that defines the unpredictable rhythms of the American frontier: dangerous, romantic, savage, eccentric, joyous and just flat-out crazy. Borrowing liberally from the established western motifs of composers like Aaron Copland, Newman thrusts audiences through a roller-coaster ride of tonal and emotional shifts. Tracks like Fight, which opens on a note of ominous foreboding and ends on a rollicking, rip-roaring frontier frolic, and Oh, Bret, which careens in double-time from the genteel to the riotously reckless, represent the musical signature for everything “Maverick” was meant to be – suspenseful, exciting, fun and hopelessly unpredictable.