V/A – FANTASTIC MR. FOX – Original Soundtrack

I’m not usually a big fan of movie soundtracks but I always enjoy the ones to Wes Anderson movies, probably because the songs work together to create an overall theme. The soundtrack to his latest movie, Fantastic Mr. Fox, is an enjoyable romp through whimsical sounds and it may also drill the chants of “Boggis, Bunce, Bean” into your head, never to escape from them.

The bulk of the soundtrack consists of compositions by Alexandre Desplat, who has also written scores for movies such as The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, The Luzhin Defence, The Queen, and many, many more (including a certain vampire movie installment). Desplat does a terrific job with these songs as they conjure up images of an idyllic everyday life that is filled with heroes and villains. At the same time, the music is playful and exudes a childish charm (after all, Fantastic Mr. Fox is based off of a children’s book by Roald Dahl). Further research reveals that Desplat has received an Academy Award nomination for best original score for his work here.

The rest of the soundtrack includes a few cuts by The Beach Boys (always a good time), Burl Ives (they work perfectly with this kind of movie, plus I love the line “Saw a bear, comb his hair” in the song “Fooba Wooba John”), and George Delerue. The Wellingtons’ “The Ballad of Davy Crockett”, which I have only heard before in snippet version in the film Back To The Future, makes an appearance here as well, along with The Rolling Stones’ “Street Fighting Man”. We are also given tracks by The Bobby Fuller Four, Nancy Adams, Art Tatum, and Jarvis Cocker. Cocker’s track is probably the only song in my iTunes library that has a jaw harp on it. I have no idea what he is singing, but I like it.

I know some people panned the movie but I adored it (The DVD comes out on March 23 – mark your calendars or make an appointment in your Blackberry). The soundtrack is an important part of the movie and it works well on its own as well. Boggis, Bunce, and Bean.


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