*batteries not included

MCA Records Germany (0076732622520)
MCA Records US (0076732622520)
Movie | Released: 1987 | Film release: 1987 | Format: CD

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# Track   Duration
1.Main Title4:55
2.Night Visitors8:47
3.Hamburger Rhumba3:39
4.New Babies3:45
5.Cafe Swing3:32
6.Times Square and Farewell6:06
8.A New Family - End Credits8:28
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*batteries not included - 06/10 - Review of Tom Daish, submitted at
By turns fun and disturbing, batteries not included is a score of definite contrasts. On the one hand is the bouncy swing and big band jazz, but equally there are sections which are really quite dramatic and tend on the side of almost being horrific. Opening with a laid back jazzy theme the more gentle side of the score is introduced. Night Visitors is somewhat boring, creeping around music doesn't make the greatest listening and although Horner makes it fun in places it does get rather wearing after a while. The Hamburger Rhumba is one of two big band set pieces in the score. It opens with a short presentation of the main theme and then moves into a joyful big band cue which moves into New Babies which is a more playful and enjoyable version of the Night Visitors styled music.

The second big band set piece is Cafe Swing and is my favourite track of the score as it assembles all of Horner's big band style into one neatly packaged cue. Admittedly, it is almost the same as the big band music from Cocoon: The Return, although I think it is arranged more stylishly in this format. Arson is perhaps the most diturbing cue on the album, with crashing pianos as well as other clever piano effects which are employed very cleverly, even if, again this doesn't make the greatest listening.

The score is nicely finished with a summary of the main themes as well as some more jazz which then moves to more gentle orchestral music as the album is rounded off. This is an out of print score that is really qute difficult to get hold of and unless you get it for a reasonable price I'd say that you can pretty much get the same kind of score by combing the big band jazz of Cocoon with the more scarey parts of Brainstorm and Casper and the main theme is taken out of Land Before Time, but for a reasonable price it makes an enjoyable, if rather uneven album due to all the conflicting styles. Perhaps I expected something a little more cuddly and child-like, whereas Horner presents this, but with rather a lot of atonal music that might have been more suited to Close Encounters of the Third Kind than a uplifting, family sci-fi film.

Other releases of *batteries not included (1987):

*batteries not included (1988)
*batteries not included (1987)
*batteries not included / Vibes (2009)

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