Quigley Down Under interprets the modern Western score from a distinctly Australian perspective. Basil Poledouris' aw-shucks melodies and quirky arrangements employ French horn, banjo, and clarinet to create a vivid evocation of gunslinger life in the Outback. While Lonesome Dove remains Poledouris' definitive work in the Western arena, Quigley Down Under possesses no shortfall of charm or imagination; its playful approach bubbles with an energy quite uncommon to the genre, avoiding portent and ponderousness to communicate the joie de vivre of its characters and setting. Most impressive is Poledouris' stirring main theme, a bold, oddly funky reinvention of the classic Western fanfare that immediately serves notice that Quigley Down Under is a horse of a very different color.
Widely considered the creative apex of television scoring, Basil Poledouris' sweeping Lonesome Dove remains the most compelling and effective orchestral music ever written for the small screen – it's also the best Western score to appear in any medium in the last quarter century, with an eloquence and slap-leather authenticity all its own. Poledouris' beautifully poignant score captures the fading grandeur of the American West in vivid detail – while its panoramic arrangements evoke the wide-open spaces of a land not yet overrun by highways, skyscrapers, and strip malls, Poledouris is most effective when exploring the rugged yet tender character of the men and women who made the frontier their own. Sonic Images' soundtrack contains roughly one-third of Poledouris' complete four-and-a-half-hour score – perhaps someday a box set will assemble Lonesome Dove's music in full, but for now this highlight reel does the trick.
With explosive new evidence this film tells the full story of the D'Oliveira scandal, explaining the critical political role that cricket played in bringing about the fall of apartheid in South Africa. In 1968, Basil D'Oliveira, a brilliant 'coloured' cricketer from South Africa who had made his home in the UK, found himself at the centre of a row that rocked the English political and sporting establishment. Excluded from the England team to tour South Africa - apparently because of his race - the 'D'Oliveira Affair' led directly to the sporting isolation of South Africa, which became crucial in bringing about the fall of the apartheid system of white rule in South Africa. Set against the backdrop of the tumultuous events of 1968, this documentary tells the story of Basil D'Oliveira and his betrayal by the English establishment, as D'Oliveira himself speaks out for the first time.
This lyrical, introverted, and sometimes exquisite set of duets by guitarist Jim Hall and bassist Red Mitchell was originally made for John Snyder's Artist House label and later reissued on CD by MHS. Hall and Mitchell always had big ears, and although the music is at a low volume and the duo stretches out on a bit on their four originals, the Mexican folk song "Blue Dove" and "Fly Me to the Moon," there are no sleepy moments.
Basil Poledouris has always thrived amidst the carnage of the action film. Known primarily for his excellent work on Conan the Barbarian, Starship Troopers, The Hunt for Red October, and the television miniseries Lonesome Dove – for which he won an Emmy – some of the composer's best work can be found on the soundtrack to Paul Verhoeven's 1987 sci-fi revenge romp, Robocop. Capitalizing on the film's anti-corporate undercurrent, Poledouris weaves a larger than life score for an unlikely hero, offering a heroic theme that paints Peter Weller's tragic, disfigured Detroit cop in a savior's light. Like Danny Elfman's score for Batman, the tone is dark, oozing metropolitan seediness awash in midnight rain. When the theme is reduced to a quiet lament, like on the masterful "Betrayal," the composer's love for his protagonist is evident, an element that's sadly missing from many of the genre's original scores. Varese Sarabande's 2004 reissue includes four bonus tracks.