Star Ryan Gosling reteams with Blue Valentine Director Derek Cianfrance in this ambitious 2012 follow-up film that details the ripple effect of fate and destiny in the family lives of two very different men, one (Gosling) a motorcycle stunt performer with a shadowy past, the other (Bradley Cooper) a rookie police officer with a promising future. Eva Mendes, Ray Liotta and Bruce Greenwood round out the all-star cast.
Since seguing into film scoring with 2009’s Crank: High Voltage, former Faith No More lead singer Mike Patton has quickly forged a reputation for his innovative and eclectic approach to the craft. Tackling Cianfrance’s gritty existential epic from the inside-out, Patton’s avant-gardist approach merges synthesizers, guitar and vocals in a series of unconventional arrangements designed to evoke the characters’ ever-changing mental and emotional states. As fate toys unpredictably with the course of human events, Patton toys equally unpredictably with the harmonic convergence of jazz, folk, rock, blues and classical. If the blues-affected backwater moodiness of synth and reverb guitars in “Schenectady” suggests something ominous and foreboding, it’s quickly detoured by the neo-gothic vocal arrangement of “Family Trees” and the gently jazzy romanticism of “Bromance.” Subsequent tracks further stir the unpredictability of Patton’s musically shape-shifting pot: the post-modern Gregorian chant of “Evergreen,” the cacophonous guitar-driven dissonance of “Misremembering,” the thunderous, purgatorial oppression of “Handsome Luke” – a free-flowing musical journey through a volatile, ever-changing minefield of lost hopes, forgotten dreams, lingering nightmares and retributive karma.