It would be difficult, near-impossible even, to fully describe how much the work of film composer Alan Silvestri has meant to me as the years have gone by. The music he created as the soundtrack to the Back to the Future trilogy remains, quite possibly, my favorite score ever set to film, while later works included the synth-heavy Flight of the Navigator, the sentimentalism of Forrest Gump & Cast Away (both part of his continued collaboration with Future director Robert Zemeckis) and more recently, heroic themes composed for Marvel’s Captain America: The First Avenger, The Avengers and the upcoming Avengers: Infinity War. With a career spanning decades, there’s no denying the impact Silvestri has had on modern cinematic music, even if his discography does includes work he performed on a few absolute duds like Super Mario Bros. and Mac & Me. Sigh.
Nevertheless, when it was announced that Silvestri would be replacing Steven Spielberg’s muse John Williams on the upcoming Ready Player One, not once did I feel any sense of worry-who better to score a celebration of ‘80s pop culture than a man who, along with Spielberg, certainly played a large role in it? Now that our first taste of his work on Ready Player One has officially hit the internet, it’s safe to say there’s quite a bit happening in this 2:26 main title track-though still possessing Silvestri trademarks like his harp flourishes and anthemic brass, it overall presents a vibe more akin to something Mr. Williams himself might do-it’s no doubt befitting a Spielbergian atmosphere, and may even unintentionally have some shades of the late great James Horner as well, especially coming out of the bridge. It’s unquestionably exciting-I can picture this playing over the PA during a climactic sporting event-but will it fit into the dystopian virtual reality landscape of Ready Player One? Whether it does or not, the nostalgic feels run deep with this one. I’m sold.
The soundtrack will be available digitally through WaterTower music on March 30th. Ready Player One hits theaters on March 29th.