Sometimes, Good Things Happen To Bad Movies

Yes, Virginia, even bad movies luck out from time to time. Like when The Happening -- widely and (though it pains me to say it) accurately regarded by many as a poor cinematic offering from M. Night Shyamalan -- somehow stumbled upon a wonderful score from M. Night's frequent and increasingly-recognized and appreciated collaborator, James Newton Howard.

As evidence, here's "Be With You," a track that builds to Howard's trademark "swelling emotiveness," but whose opening measures have a definite Ralph Vaughan-Williams-ish vibe to my ears -- a fact that has been true of Howard's work in the pastI was really won over by this track, and Howard's ability to generate tension and definite unease in the midst of a fairly melodic theme is impressive. Plus, it's haunting (appropriately). And it's beautiful. (Make sure and stay through to the "End Title Suite." That's incredibly Vaughan-Williams-ish, as well.)

The whole score's pretty melodic/creepy/impressive, though you need to be able to tolerate a fair bit of dissonance early on (which makes more sense in context). All in all, far more worthy of your time than the film it bolsters and elevates beyond all reasonable expectations (if not quite high enough to make it worthwhile).

Maybe just listen, though. It's not better in context.

Attribution(s): Images and stills are the property of 20th Century Fox and other respective distributors.