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POTO Soundtrack and Companion Book Review

Category: Phantom of the Opera Reviews
Article Date: February 4, 2005 | Publication: The Trades | Author: Reviewer
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Usually when a publisher issues a companion book to a high budget Hollywood movie, it is simply a trivial attempt to extract a profit. The Phantom of the Opera Companion, however, offers readers enough substance to validate its purchase. The book follows the story of The Phantom of the Opera from its inception in Gaston Leroux's novel to its success on Broadway to its current appearance on the big screen.

The layout of the publication is excellent, with well-structured sections that guide the reading process. The pages dedicated to the production and set design are especially effective in their explanation of how the design, art, and construction departments worked to create an environment to match the soaring gothic romance of the storyline? While this subsection is a standout, the entire stage to Screen section offers an absorbing behind the scenes look at the making of the film, and the interview with Joel Schumacher provides thoughtful insights about the movie.

In addition, the book does a nice job of introducing the film's young, talented cast, offering informative bios of all of the major players. Also included is the movie's complete screenplay, which is illustrated by beautiful color photos that you won't find anywhere else.

For any phantom phan that wants to delve deeper into this cinematic masterpiece, The Phantom of the Opera Companion?is a fascinating read.

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Few Broadway musicals, if any, have been as celebrated as Andrew Lloyd Webber he Phantom of the Opera? Now that Webber classic has hit the big screen, Phantom hans?have terrific new renditions of the show treasured songs to enjoy. In fact, the film version of he Phantom of the Opera?even contains sixteen minutes of new music written specifically for the Hollywood production.

It is Webber time honored favorites, however, such as he Phantom of the Opera?and he Music of the Night?that deliver the strongest punch. These songs have never sounded better than they do on this soundtrack. Emmy Rossum (who plays Christine) has the voice of an angel. Her vocal elegance has a magical, overpowering quality that pulls you into a song and envelops you in its grandeur. Gerard Buter (who plays The Phantom) also impresses with the broad sweeping power of his vocal range. The sheer emotion that he conveys as he belts out a song is inspiring and captivating.

The two-disc special edition soundtrack outshines the standard version, because of the breadth of its material, including the film astounding musical score. The special edition version also includes a hardcover case as well as a dazzling array of color photos inside. For any true fan of either the Broadway musical or the theatrical version, this chart topping soundtrack is a must own.

Overall Grade: A

 


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