Life Force, the complete score
The dark side of Henry Mancini
BuySoundtrax Records has released a 2CD set of music from Lifeforce, composed by two legendary composers, Henry Mancini and Michael Kamen. Lifeforce was the film adaptation of the novel The Space Vampires, by Colin Wilson. Director Tobe Hooper (The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Poltergeist) took some liberties with the story to tie it in to the reappearance of Halley's comet. A space shuttle mission investigating the comet inadvertently brings back a race of space vampires to London who seek to transform the populace into zombies. Cannon Films felt the title Space Vampires seemed too low budget and the film was renamed Lifeforce.
In 1985 when the vampire science fiction film Lifeforce was in need of a composer, Henry Mancini seemed un unlikely choice. But when Hooper's first choice, James Horner, hot of the heels of his work with the first two Star Trek films, proved unavailable, Mancini was brought on board.
Henry Mancini may be best recognized for his work with more lighthearted films, like Breakfast At Tiffany's and The Pink Panther film series, but earlier in his career Mancini was a member of the music department of Universal Pictures. As such he composed the scores for numerous horror and science fiction films like It Came From Outer Space, The Creature From The Black Lagoon and The Monolith Monsters, which led Hooper to see if Mancini was interested in revisiting the genre.
Mancini composed a provocative, dramatic and dynamic orchestral score, an hour and forty minutes of music, which mostly fell victim to the cutting room floor. When Mancini did not want to go back and compose new materials for the film, itself now 20 minutes shorter, Michael Kamen was called in to fill in the musical blanks. Kamen was an up-and-coming composer, having already completed scores for David Cronenberg (The Dead Zone) and Terry Gilliam (Brazil).
BuySoundtrax Records presents a limited edition release (only 3,000 copies) of Lifeforce, featuring Henry Mancini's complete score as recorded in sequence, along with Michael Kamen's additional tracks. The set also includes the original soundtrack recording and a special bonus track, the film version of Grandson Of The Web Of Destiny, performed with choir.