For film 'La Menace' with Yves Montand by Alain Corneau
All Music Guide
========= from the cover ==========
IN THE EARLY SPRING OF 1977, Denise Petitdidier, the film producer of La Menace, called from Paris to ask Gerry to write the music for her film, directed by Alain Corneau and featuring the actor Yves Montand. Gerry's previous soundtrack work included the film versions of Luv for director Clive Donne, Thousand Clowns and others.
Gerry and I soon found ourselves in Bordeaux, having dinner with Denise, Alain and Yves discussing the film-to-be. It was at that time that we discovered that Alain had specifically requested having Gerry as the film's composer. We heard from Alain again toward the end of June saying that he would like to come by to briefly narrate the story of the film and then he would be leaving for Canada to complete filming.
Alain came to our home in Connecticut a few weeks later and began telling Gerry the story of the film, the different scenarios, etc. As Alain spoke, I noticed that Gerry began writing - not words, but musical notes. To the surprise of both Alain and myself, Gerry was already transposing the story into music. Alain was highly impressed. As we said our good-byes, Gerry told him, "You don't need to send me the film, your narration was very clear. Just send me the length of each scene with their stop time." Around the middle of the next month, our good friend Dave Grusin had arrived for a planned visit to spend some time with us. By this time, Gerry was beginning to realize how difficult it was to complete an entire film score in 15 days! Dave graciously offered to help Gerry organize the completed tracks and play along with him to finish what remained. That put Gerry on the right track. Before I knew it, we were working round the clock at Don Elliott's studio one by one gathering the amazing talent that you hear on this recording.
WE ARRIVED IN PARIS with the completed soundtrack which Alain quickly set to be played along with the film - that Gerry and I were seeing for the first time. To everyone's astonishment, the music matched perfectly with each and every scene, both the emotional feel of what was on the screen and the timings of each scene - to the split second! To say the least, everyone was quite pleased with the results.
Denise later confessed that she thought Alain was out of his mind asking a composer to perform such a task in only two weeks. Alain just smiled and said that he knew Gerry could perform the impossible. The result is what you hear on this beautiful soundtrack.
Because some of the songs couldn't be used in the film, Gerry decided that in addition to the soundtrack that was released in 1977, he wanted to release an album of all the music he wrote for the film. I'm so pleased that DRG and Hugh Fordin are making more of Gerry's music available to be enjoyed by future generations.
- Franca R. Mulligan