Dissertation on the Music of Legend
(For the Royal College of Music)
by Tobie Rudd

Tobie Rudd wrote his Dissertation on the Music of Legend comparing the two approaches to the music score for the Masters course in Film music that he is taking at the Royal College of Music. He checked with his supervisor and was told that it is okay to post the dissertation on the Legend FAQ web site as long as we note that the dissertation is a working copy and has not been marked yet.

For anyone who reads this dissertation, please realise that if you were "seeing it live" there would be video and audio clips played at points marked off in the dissertation. 


 Ridley Scott's 1985 film Legend was released in both the United States and Europe with different music scores. The original European release contained a large orchestral/choral score by Jerry Goldsmith; the American version an electronic score by the German group Tangerine Dream. By studying the music to both versions of the film we can see how two different 'composers' (stylistically from divergent camps) have approached the same work, and whether the function of the music within the film is affected by this.


The film is a traditional fairytale story set in western European/British mythology, and contains biblical overtones.

A princess is taken by her sweetheart, a woodland boy, to see a pair of unicorns, but unbeknown to them they are followed by Goblins sent by the Lord of Darkness. They appear to kill one of unicorns by removing its horn, causing the world to freeze, and kidnap the remaining unicorn together with the Princess. With the unicorns dead the Lord of Darkness would rule the earth. Jack, the hero, and some woodland Faeries, journey to Darkness' lair and frees the unicorn and Lili, destroying Darkness. Once freed they return to the woods, restoring the horn to the unicorn, living 'happily ever after'.

The Music

Legend was originally scored by Jerry Goldsmith, regarded as one of the most respected composers in Hollywood. He has composed such scores as The Omen, Star Trek, Chinatown, Basic Instinct, Planet of the Apes, etc. Goldsmith and director Ridley Scott had worked together before on Alien, a project that also posed a lot of problems for the composer/director relationship; 'I told Ridley that working on Alien was one of the most miserable experiences I've ever had in this profession' said Goldsmith of Scott's ability to communicate. 'I was on the picture for four months and I talked to you three times' and so on Legend they 'communicated like crazy.' (Footnote #1) Goldsmith worked on the songs and dances in pre-production and spent 6 months working on the score. The original score was for a film lasting 2 hours 20 minutes, but the film was cut to 95 minutes due to the distributor insisting on changes. Goldsmith however was not asked to rescore the music after these major cuts, leaving it to the editor, who as Goldsmith says 'fancies himself as a real musician. They all think he has great taste and knowledge of music because he has a big record collection......Well, this guy can't cut a damn thing without putting track to it.'(Footnote #2) These cuts resulted in bad musical edits, shifting key changes and most notably cues being moved into new places or reedited together to form new ones. The kitchen scene still has the original temp track(Footnote #3) from Goldsmith's Psycho II (temp tracks were also left in Alien, and ironically Goldsmiths music, along with James Horner's was used and left in for the majority of Bladerunner).(Footnote #4)

Jay Sheinberg, a Universal Studio executive was convinced that the film would be a failure if the Goldsmith score was left in place. (He also wanted Terry Gilliam to remove Michael Kamen's score to Brazil.) Sheinberg wanted the score replaced with a more commercial, pop/rock soundtrack, making it more accessible to a younger 'MTV' audience. Tangerine Dream were picked, possibly because of the success of Tom Cruise's previous film Risky Business that they scored, and the rise of the John Hughes 'Teenage' movies.(Footnote #5) The film was then reedited again with a faster pace, cutting the time down a further 5 minutes to a running time of 89 minutes.

The German group Tangerine Dream are however not so much 'Pop', more 'New Age'. They originally formed in the early 70s and at that time of Legend comprised Edgar Froese (the founding member), Christopher Franke (now a successful film/TV composer, e.g. Universal Soldier and Babylon 5) and Johannes Schmoelling. During the 1980s they composed music for a number of films including Risky Business, Near Dark, and Shy People.

When Ridley Scott was approached about the scores for Legend, David Stoner of Cinemascore magazine said, 'I received the impression from our conversation that he felt that he had been given the best score it was possible to have and that he was being forced to change it in an attempt to save the film from anticipated financial disaster.'(Footnote #6)

Although it is not uncommon for film scores to be rejected and an alternative written, it is rare, if not unique, for a film to be released commercially with two scores. This provides a wealth of study into how to approach the scoring of a film seen from two different perspectives. As a film music student this is an invaluable source of learning and information.


Whilst there are magazine articles published on the scores,(Footnote #7) they tend to be fairly superficial and not of a scholarly nature. They deal mainly with emotive responses to the music, or the treatment of the Goldsmith score, removed from the American release by company executives in favour of the more commercial Tangerine Dream soundtrack.

The study of the two versions will involve analysing the music with regard to five areas comparing and contrasting the two approaches. These five areas were chosen because they deal mainly with the techniques that are inherent to a film composer. These are:


All musical examples are transcriptions as all the Goldsmith scores and sketches were lost by the studio and the Tangerine Dream score was created electronically and therefore not in any published form.


The story has its roots in the European fantasy genre. The evolution Legend can be read in the sleeve notes to the Goldsmith CD by Paul Andrew MacLean:

Scott originally sought to adapt the tragedy of "Tristan and Isolde" (the story of one of King Arthur's Knights, Sir Tristan, and his forbidden love for Isolde, the sister of a slain enemy - made famous by Richard Wagner's opera), but abandoned this idea, concerned that the classical nature of the story was perhaps too esoteric to interest most audiences. Instead, Scott opted for an original faerie-tale type of story, not based on any specific tale, although stylistically rooted in folklore of Britain and northern Europe, with the classic conflict between the powers of light and darkness at its core.(Footnote #8)

The original script entitled Legends of Darkness was written by William Hjorstberg who 'forged a story which evoked the feeling of tales such as "Sleeping Beauty" and those of the Brothers Grimm, although the overall plot concerning the Lord of Darkness rising to possess the world probably has more in common with the Biblical Book of Revelations than any mythological source.'(Footnote #9)

The fantasy/fairytale genre suggests orchestral music and so Goldsmith adopts the impressionistic sound world of Ravel for the basis of his score, most significantly Ravel's Daphnis and Chloe. A huge orchestral palette together with, for the most part, wordless choir is combined with synthesisers including Yamaha DX-7, Roland JP-8, Memorymoog, Oberheim OB-8 DMX and DSX, and Sequential Prophet-T8.(Footnote #10)

Paul MacLean states that:

the way Goldsmith veers from familiar tonality into the mysterious and uncertain atonal realm, makes the score inherently evocative of fantasy. As the music drifts between tonality and atonality, so does fantasy drift within that twilight real between dreams and reality, the concrete physical world and the spirit realm.(Footnote #11)

Although I agree with the description of the music, I would disagree that Goldsmith slips between tonality and atonality. Goldsmith moves from the simple folk like world of the woods, Lili, Jack and the Faeries into a much darker and extended tonality, but I do not feel this style is especially atonal, as the key centre is not obscured for very long. The score is lyrical in quality, even the music for Darkness is not angular (the exception being the goblin theme) the choir providing an ethereal quality to the woodland music, and a demonic quality for Darkness.

Tangerine Dream adopt a similar approach to the score, although it is inherently different from Goldsmiths. Their approach to scoring films is not to drastically adapt their style: 'We want not to become like film composers who change their style like they change shirts. We still want to keep our identity.'(Footnote #12) However, this score is different from their majority, as the reviewer G.M. Tucker says:

I've never heard anything so purely musical from them, compelling less for its surface rhythms than for its voice...This is more than not being the disaster I expected. This is a respectable work by a group of composers I had more or less dismissed as capable of only one kind of film. I only wish this score were on some other movie. (Footnote #13)

Their fantasy world is created by using electronic sounds, trying to recreate the mythical world using 35 types of synthesizer including Synclavier, Fairlight and PBG System together with specifically designed sequencers to create irregular patterns.(Footnote #14) Some of the cues do have a lyrical quality, but the majority are very angular contrasting sometimes dramatically with the images on the screen. This is possibly a result of the use of sequences, whose repetition denies the organic growth quality of the Goldsmith score.

There is no obvious overall influence to their style for the film, but like the Goldsmith version there are some folk influences, although more Eastern in flavour. The music for Darkness is pseudo-ethnic using a sitar and a pentatonic scale, and the love theme has shakuhachi elements. Of course this is at odds with the placement of the story as a western European/British fairytale and is clichéd in its depiction of evil as having an Eastern influence.

One of the main problems with the Tangerine Dream score is that we are seeing it 13 years after its initial conception, and this specific electronic score dates very badly, unlike the orchestral score, (except for perhaps some of the synthesized sounds). The use of sequences and the particular sampled sounds used have a very 80s feel about them, and therefore it is difficult not to feel prejudiced against this more than a decade later. However it is not the use of an electronic score that is the main criticism, more the style and the type of music written.

Thematic Development

The use of character motifs within the film is present in both versions to a greater or lesser degree, and their merits evaluated within that context.

Goldsmith uses multiple motifs throughout the score, but those that recur are themes that we associate with characters. These are:

Tangerine Dream approach the characters in a similar way, using the following themes:

One of the most striking themes that Goldsmith uses is the Goblin theme. (MUSIC EXAMPLE 3) As the opening titles open out onto the woodland setting we are surrounded by sustained chords, harp/synthesizer glissandi and flute flourishes. This is interrupted by a very harsh brass 'wow wow' synthesizer theme as we cut to the Goblin Blix. This becomes immediately distinct from the rest of the orchestra.

(MUSIC EXAMPLE 11 - Opening Titles - Goldsmith)

(VIDEO EXAMPLE 1 - Opening Titles- Goldsmith)

This simple motif becomes effective initially because of its sound. The semitone drop becomes a dominant feature later on in the film, depicting any kind of danger, most importantly Darkness himself. It is used to cut through the orchestral texture as can be seen in scenes 3, as they watch Lili, and scene 6, when they plan to poison the unicorn, this time played by the orchestra. (VIDEO EXAMPLE 2 - The Goblins watch VIDEO EXAMPLE 3 - Preparing to attack - Goldsmith)

Although the theme is normally heard in this synthesizer version, it is developed in a very subtle way as they prepare to dehorn the unicorn.

(VIDEO EXAMPLE 4 - The Goblins dehorn the unicorn - Goldsmith)

  1. The music begins in scene 8 and starts with a pulsing synthesizer beat when we cut to Jack under the water.

  2. A series of cuts follows between Lili, frightened as the storms approach, and Jack. On the cut to Jack peering under a ledge a low brass note rings through, (which is not the original music for this scene and comes from the final battle sequence).

  3. Goldsmith introduces the choir, singing the motif derived from the goblin theme, on the cut to the dying unicorn. This is followed by one more burst of the low brass chord on the cut to Jack, before returning to the original music. From this point the comic Goblin theme reveals itself, without the use of the synthesizer.

  4. As Blix starts to move in on his prey Goldsmith introduces the second part of the Goblin theme, the characteristic semitone motif, this time played on strings and brass. (MUSIC EXAMPLE 12 - The unicorn is dehorned - Goldsmith) The motif otherwise is intact, even the distance between the sequence is the same.
    (MUSIC EXAMPLE 13 - Goblin theme development - Goldsmith)
    As they continue to approach it again develops, first by inverting the second descending semitone before the choir takes over (singing 'Kingdom of Darkness'), transforming it into the Darkness motif.

  5. Finally, after Jack has broken through the ice, the horns play a repeated descending semitone.

This entire scene is dominated by this theme in one form or another. We associate the semitone motif because it is repeatedly played on each cut to the goblins in the early stages of the film. But this transformation is much darker than the original version, which is more comic than frightening. This development now becomes associated with the Lord of Darkness, who as yet has remained unseen, setting up the expectation for his arrival.

Made up mainly of this 'yearning' semitone drop, the Darkness theme (MUSIC EXAMPLE 14) opens with a trill motif rising a fifth before falling a semitone followed by a fifth, as in the choir's 'Kingdom of Darkness' from above. In his dramatic first appearance through the mirror, the conversation with Lili and the final sacrifice, the trill part is used extensively.

(VIDEO EXAMPLE 5 - Darkness enters/The conversation/The sacrifice - Goldsmith)

Our first visual introduction to the Lord of Darkness in the American version is at the beginning after the woodland opening. The music at this point is inaudible, mixed too low to distinguish any significant thematic material, but what can be heard does not relate to Tangerine Dreams' Darkness theme. The theme itself first makes its appearance in the same scene discussed above as he makes his entrance through the mirror. It uses the harmonic minor scale with the augmented second highlighted by a sitar, giving a pseudo Eastern flavour. (MUSIC EXAMPLE 15 - Darkness theme - Tangerine Dream.) This theme is not used again until the very end. In other scenes, like the conversation with Lili, we hear similar sounds, low bass choir and an occasional sitar glissando, but no theme. Only when Darkness is being sucked into the void at the climax of the film do we have the first and only recurrence of his theme.

(VIDEO EXAMPLE 6 - Darkness enters/Into the void - Tangerine Dream)

The music that Goldsmith associates with Lili equally interesting. At her first appearance in the she is singing a folk-like song "Living River", which the orchestra then takes up. Although associated with her, it is the love theme that is mainly linked to her character. (MUSIC EXAMPLE 4 - Lili's theme/Love theme - Goldsmith) After Nell enters the cottage in scene 3 and says 'visiting poor folk like us' the love theme enters. (VIDEO EXAMPLE 7 - Lili and Nell - Goldsmith.) Again this is a folk like tune, very innocent and simple, it later acts as the love theme between her and Jack. An example of this can be seen in final sequence as Jack erupts from the water with the ring in his hand, proving his love.

(VIDEO EXAMPLE 8 - Jack finds the ring.)

Interestingly Tangerine Dream also associate two themes with Lili as well as the love theme. The first is when we see Lili in the woods at the beginning, the second when she attempts to kiss Jack after the unicorns have run away. But these two themes are not reused. The first example at Lili's initial appearance, which in all senses is Lili's theme, is the only time that this is heard. (MUSIC EXAMPLE 16, page 17) The second is more fluid, made up of descending and ascending thirds by step (thus bearing a tenuous relationship with the love theme), but in this tender moment the love theme is not used.


(VIDEO EXAMPLE 9 - Lili in the woods VIDEO EXAMPLE 10 - 'Are you afraid to kiss me' - Tangerine Dream)

In the American version the love theme is first heard in the opening title scroll before the credits.(Footnote #15) Played using a flute/slide whistle sound, the theme is not particularly romantic, more melancholic. (MUSIC EXAMPLE 9 - Love theme - Tangerine Dream.) The next time it appears is when Lili is walking in the woods calling to Jack and could therefore be associated with the woodland setting, which is used for the majority of the story.(VIDEO EXAMPLE 11 - Lili calls for Jack - Tangerine Dream) However it is subsequently used when Jack and Lili kiss, this time occurring over a repetitious motif which first appeared on Jack's arrival. Both this motif and the love theme are used when Oona transforms herself into Lili trying to seduce Jack, confirming that this is indeed the love theme.(VIDEO EXAMPLE 12 - Jack and Lili Kiss/ Oona's transformation - Tangerine Dream)

The dominant and most striking idea in the American version is the unicorn theme.(MUSIC EXAMPLE 7 - Unicorn Theme - Tangerine Dream) Heard when we first see the unicorns, the theme is slow and stately, and consists of a repeating phrase that captures the essence of these regal and mythical creatures. The theme begins with a panpipe motif that is employed throughout the film, noticeable in the shots of the setting sun and on cuts to the captured unicorn. It will be discussed in more detail however under the section on narrative. It appears unaltered at the end of the film with added lyrics, over which we see the horn being restored to the unicorn's, Lili revived, and their farewell into the sunset. The theme works extremely well conveying the sense of magic, aptly using the unicorn theme which so well depicts their sense of mysticism, which their love theme (unlike Goldsmiths) does not. The score appears come to a natural conclusion, simply because this theme is so memorable and so effective, giving us a sense of unity to the score. Being one of the longest cues, it has the advantage of no interruptions or too low a mix, allowing us to hear it fully.

(VIDEO EXAMPLE 13 - Farewell - Tangerine Dream)

Goldsmith's approach is to rely on the character themes to drive the score forward, in a sense relying on these as compositional hooks on which to hang his score. Paul MacLean says that 'The score is thematically complex, although Goldsmith refrains from using leitmotifs, per se, believing that a score should instead be built from one basic theme, and out of that theme a few notes extracted and reconfigured to develop more themes, so that all the material is related and indigenous to that one score.'(Footnote #16) Although some themes are linked, I would disagree that, in this score, Goldsmith has refrained from using any leitmotifs. The effectiveness of using the leitmotif is the familiarity of the characters and their situations. (e.g. as Jack is poised to shoot Lili because of her apparent betrayal, the love theme battles against the evil music of Darkness, with the unicorn theme interrupting at the appropriate moments). This familiarity, and how these themes are treated and adapted depending on the situation, keeps the continuity of the story and the sound world in which we experience these events constant. As Karlin/Wright say in On the Track 'The development of motifs is a powerful compositional device for the film composer, allowing him to bring an overall sense of unity to his score and still leave room for variety.'(Footnote #17) Themes are teased out allowing us to become accustomed to them so the arrival of the full version or a variation of the original is already familiar, leaving a sense of satisfaction. This is highlighted by the love theme, teasingly heard throughout the score, returning triumphantly as Jack finds and reveals the ring in the closing scenes, accompanied by full orchestra and choir. The problem with the Goldsmith score is a small amount of discontinuity as several of the cues have been moved.(Footnote #18)

The Tangerine Dream score has identifiable themes, but their use is somewhat sporadic, used mainly to introduce characters and then discarded. A sense of unity throughout the score is somewhat lost, only being held together at the end by the use of the unicorn theme. Most of the material changes from scene to scene, and uses sequenced patterns to provide a background wash to the action, rather than providing any kind of continual development or organic growth to the music. Because of this kind of development, most being simple repetitions of short phrases, it does allow us to become accustomed to them and therefore losing any sense of momentum in the story. Goldsmith may state a theme, but then allows it to develop. Repetition is essential in a film score and is an effective form of musical approach, but without development it can become tedious and ineffective.

Music and Soundscape

The relationship between the music and the rest of the sounds in the film is an important part of a film composer's technique. Its interaction with the dialogue and the sound effects has to be taken into account in order for the effect of a particular scene to come across.

Lili's conversation with Nell in scene 3:

(VIDEO EXAMPLE 14 - Lili and Nell - Goldsmith)

Italics = American version only

Brackets = European version only

Lili looks at the clock on the wall Nell walks in

Lili, (a Royal visit is always a Pleasure)
One of your visits is always a pleasure.
Have another biscuit.

Nell, I've no time to stay for a visit today.

Oh, you got a sweet-heart waiting

No, neither country proverb nor Kings command
could keep me from the woods today.

(Then its common sense ought to. Lili, Princess Lili)
Lili, I look on you as a Daughter.
If you'll pardon my saying it, it's time you started behaving
like the (princess) lady that you are, (You should be out looking for a handsome prince on a white
charger) not visiting poor folk like us.

(But you know I love coming here.) This place holds more magic for me than any palace in the world,
you live a very rich life Nell.

You're very sweet Lili
(Magic is a wonderful thing, you'll find your
own magic one day, I'm sure you will)

I have no time for this I'm going


Goldsmith gives the dialogue room to speak, writing expressive flute lines high above the dialogue, and changing the mood by changing the instruments to contrast with the voices. The accompaniment is kept simple, either with gentle arppeggiated movement or with a sustained chordal texture; therefore the music and dialogue are allowed to balance. Tangerine Dream decide to leave this alone, apart from a small introduction to the next scene.

The impressive visual horror of Darkness appearing out of the mirror in scene 24 and the subsequent dialogue with Lili is also scored differently by both composers. Goldsmith takes his starting point from the visual effects, scoring Darkness' entrance with female choir singing the characteristic semitone drop taken from his theme, echoed by the basses. On the cut to him approaching there is a bell toll followed by warm, low bass chord, with an oboe cutting through above playing the opening of his theme. As he leans over Lili and she pushes herself away in horror, the bass and possibly a bass clarinet crescendo before the music fades out as he says "Quiet" The rest of the conversation is not scored, allowing the resonance of his voice to dominate the scene. Goldsmith therefore uses only a small part of the Darkness theme, using it as an effect to heighten the sense of horror Lili is experiencing.

(VIDEO EXAMPLE 15 - Darkness enters - Goldsmith)

Tangerine Dream take a different approach to this scene. They start the cue in approximately the same place, using their Darkness theme but continue to repeat the theme over the action at the beginning and under the dialogue. It is at the start of the dialogue that the music becomes difficult to hear. The music is mixed very low as soon as Darkness begins to talk. Only occasionally do we hear the choir and sitar, the sitar being most effective as it stands out against the voices. I believe that the reason for the low mix is that the choir sound is written in the same range as the voice of Darkness, thus conflicting if it was too loud.

(VIDEO EXAMPLE 16 - Darkness enters - Tangerine Dream)

In this scene Goldsmith is obviously very aware of the soundscape that he is writing for. The voice of Darkness is booming and resonating, dominating all the other sounds around him. Goldsmith is vary sparing when writing for Darkness, not scoring him in scene 2, at the goblin camp scene 14, his conversation with his father (scene 23)or in the next conversation with Lili discussed next (scene 28). Tangerine Dream however score the dialogue in scene 2, but again it is mixed extremely low almost to an inaudible point. They also choose not to score most of the goblin camp scene, using the flute sound towards the end, a distinctive sound well above the range of his voice. In the conversation with his father they again score it with a choir sound, this time however it is more in the female voice range, so away from the lower range of his voice, but still sounding considerably muddier than the unscored Goldsmith version. It is therefore valuable to see what Goldsmith does when he scores under Darkness' dialogue.

In scene 28, Darkness in one of his most tender moments, confesses his love for Lili, trying to persuade her to sit and talk, whilst she tests his patience. Goldsmith scores this with low choir, thus possibly conflicting with Darkness' voice. Unlike the Tangerine Dreams use of choir, Goldsmith uses them to provide a background wash of harmony slowly swelling and falling away, doubled by strings also in this range. Admittedly some sounds become lost, but this is only the foundation on which Goldsmith then lays material. Goldsmith uses the oboe to cut through the surrounding soundscape, and continues this in a lower range by a high bassoon, both weaving around the dialogue. As Darkness offers his heart to Lili we again hear the oboe, this time coupled with high clarinet. Goldsmith scores only part of this scene and uses a slow metronome speed, around crotchet.

(VIDEO EXAMPLE 17 - 'We are alone together' - Goldsmith)

The approach taken by both composers is different. Goldsmith writes around the voices and carefully scores music where it would be appropriate in relation with the sound effects. Ultimately though the score suffers from being mixed too low. Tangerine Dream on the other hand have the advantage of a better mix, but continue to score the same way under the dialogue and sound effects, leaving it to the sound editor to make the necessary adjustments, i.e., mixing the music down considerably when it would be too loud. They also take the same approach to scoring under dialogue as they would a scene without and do not choose to reflect any emotional changes. Although this may seem as a criticism of their technique, it is more a result of their style. They use sequenced patterns as a basis for many of their cues and continue these patterns throughout a scene, playing through any sound effects or speech. Although with the type of score that Goldsmith has written this would be classed as ineffective scoring, this is their style which cannot be criticized in itself, although for this type of film it may be inappropriate.

Scoring decisions

Contrasting the same scenes is dealt with in other sections of the dissertation, but it is interesting to compare some scenes where spotting of music differs.

Scene 4 Lili alone in the woods.

This scene is the first perception of Lili being in any kind of danger. The high point of this is the swirling camera shot as she becomes concerned. The two approaches taken by both composers are amazingly varied.

Goldsmith leaves the beginning of this scene totally unscored. We hear every detail of the birds in the woods and the rustle of someone following. The silence builds the tension before Goldsmith brings in the start of the cue just after the flock of birds fly away. A simple two part entry, one a pedal note, the other a descending motif, which is suddenly interrupted by a fortissimo orchestral tutti arpeggio as Jack jumps down. In the brief seconds before Lili turns, we hear an upbeat into a held high string note, increasing the tension. As she turns and says "Jack you scared the life out of me" there is a playful, rapid descending major flute scale followed by bassoon and bass. On the cut to Jack, surrounded by an array of birds, the love theme is majestically played on horn, with flutes playing bird like passages high above.

(VIDEO EXAMPLE 18 - Lili calls for Jack - Goldsmith)

Tangerine Dream approach the scene in a completely different way. They start the cue just before Lili leaves Nell's cottage. This is what we come to associate with the love theme. Played using a flute/whistle sound, it is melancholic and slightly mysterious, repeating several times as Lili walks through the woods. There are no capture points(Footnote #19) on any of the cuts to Goblins and no changes as Lili becomes more agitated. As the camera swirls around Lili when she realises she is being watched, the music stops. It restarts with a muffled bass entry as Jack jumps down to frighten her, and continues through the pause before Lili turns and shouts "Jack". On the cut to Jack, a sequenced motif fades in and repeats throughout the rest of this scene, together with the love theme superimposed over the top.

(VIDEO EXAMPLE 19 - Lili calls for Jack - Tangerine Dream)

The scoring of these two scenes, one with music throughout, the other only at the end, is not a question of which is correct, but the way in which this is done has to be examined. Goldsmith relies on the silence to create the tension. He waits for the whirl of the camera shot, obviously different from all the other shots in this sequence, before he starts his cue. Tangerine Dream's approach of playing through the scene is acceptable in theory, but we do not sense any of the tension that Lili is experiencing. She obviously becomes more frightened but the music does not change enough for this to be emphasised; the camera swirl not highlighted at all. Maybe it would be appropriate to use some of the cuts to the goblins, emphasising her impending danger. Altering the theme, or introducing a change of harmony at key points would build to Jack's entrance, but unfortunately their music weakens the effectiveness of this scene.

Goldsmith utilises the pause before Lili greets Jack by using a high held string note to increase the tension. Tangerine Dream are at a disadvantage here because prior to Lili turning there is an extra shot of Jacks face, so we know who he is, making Lili's pause almost redundant. But there is little music here apart from the held bass note sustained from Jack's first appearance, therefore losing some of its impact. This is the first entrance of 'our hero', a typical Princess and her pauper scenario, highlighted with a rousing horn by Goldsmith, but lost by Tangerine Dream.

Another scene where the two composers differ is after the unicorns have run away in scene 8. Lili tries to kiss Jack asking "are you afraid to kiss me" Jack replying "I'm afraid you'll beak my heart". After setting a challenge, saying that she will marry any man who can find her ring, she throws it into the lake, into which Jack immediately dives.

Goldsmith leaves this scene totally unscored, maybe because in this version Lili has just sung to Jack to 'chase his fears away'. Throughout their conversation there are low rumbles of the approaching thunder storms. (VIDEO EXAMPLE 20 - The storm approaches - Goldsmith) In the Tangerine dream score they use a very effective theme that slowly grows through this scene. As described in the Thematic Development section above, this theme does not appear again, but it is in fact a very simple love theme for the two of them, plainly oblivious to the impending danger around theme. Unfortunately it is spoilt by having a synthesizer effect glissando as we see Jack diving into the lake.

(VIDEO EXAMPLE 21 - The storm approaches - Tangerine Dream)

Goldsmith allows the visuals to convey the story, making the atmosphere of the woods and the sound of the oncoming storm particularly effective. Tangerine dream, on deciding to score this section have played on the romantic link between the two characters, blissfully unaware of the danger and successfully allowing the narrative in combination with the music to travel forward, not disrupting the flow of the scene.

It can be seen throughout the film that Tangerine Dream tend to score entire scenes with continuous music. Although Goldsmith does have write large sections of music he does not continue the music unnecessarily, effectively using it to enhance a scene depending on what the situation calls for.

Dramatic function of the music
(conveying the narrative)

There are two scenes that have very little dialogue, relying totally on the music to convey the story. The first is Jack's non verbal conversation with the distraught unicorn.

The scene can be broken down into 5 sections.

  1. Jack approaches the dead unicorn

  2. The female rushes in, looks at her dead mate

  3. Jack moves forward, the unicorn charges in rage

  4. Jack asks for Forgiveness, which he receives

  5. He returns to the Fairies telling them what must be done

If the music is removed from this scene the impact is lost. We have no representation of the emotional dialogue that takes place between the two as this is not clear from the visuals alone. Goldsmith highlights these sections of the narrative as follows:

(MUSIC EXAMPLE 18 - Jack and the unicorn - Goldsmith)

(VIDEO EXAMPLE 22 - Jack and the unicorn - Goldsmith)

  1. The cue starts with Jack and the Faeries looking over the bank of snow at the dead unicorn, using the opening motif of the unicorn theme. As he moves forward over the bank there is a rhythmic figure possibly derived from the opening of the Faerie's theme, a percussive funeral procession motif. As we exchange shots between Jack and the unicorn more variation on the unicorn theme occurs.

  2. This is interrupted by the entrance of the female unicorn, heralded by muted horns playing the rhythmic element from above. As she gently sniffs her mate and Jack moves forward, we hear the unicorn theme played using all of the opening two phrases, accompanied by the cellos playing the motif associated with evil, the descending semitone.

  3. When Jack approaches further, this motif is given to the horns and strings as the unicorn charges towards him in rage, with the low brass playing the same motif in reverse.

  4. As Jack tearfully kneels before her we hear teasing snippets of the unicorn theme. As she "talks" to him, Goldsmith uses synthesizers, high wind and mid range strings, dropping the orchestration to gentle sustained notes allowing Jack's "Forgive me" to come through. After Jack says "I meant no wrong" we have the unicorn theme played in full on the flute, accompanied by choir, this time without the snarling, 'evil' motif.

  5. On his return to the Faeries the processional music is reused, interspersed on the cuts to the unicorn with the opening two notes of its theme accompanied by choir.(Footnote #20)

Goldsmith changes the mood constantly to suit the developing story. The narrative unfolds in the music, alternating from sorrow to rage back to sorrow and forgiveness. He teases out the unicorn theme holding it back until the unicorn finally forgives Jack, carefully scoring around the one important line of dialogue as he asks for forgiveness

Tangerine Dream's music for this scene is probably their best in the entire score and they approach the narrative as follows:

(MUSIC EXAMPLE 19 - Jack and the unicorn - Tangerine Dream)

(VIDEO EXAMPLE 23 - Jack and the unicorn - Tangerine Dream)

  1. The cue begins just before the cross fade to Jack and the Faeries looking over the bank, with a variation of the unicorn theme. On the cut to the unicorn, the theme starts in full and carries on as he approaches the dead unicorn.

  2. When the second unicorn enters there is no capture point, but as she turns towards her mate an electric guitar joins the theme, together with a rising bass line.

  3. As Jack approaches the unicorn there is a bridge section that continues as she charges at him.

  4. This rises and builds to a key change reintroducing the unicorn theme as he kneels before her and says "Forgive me, I meant no wrong." Unfortunately they again play through the dialogue, leaving the sound editor no choice but to lower the volume at this point.

  5. As Jack approaches the Faeries the music fades out on an imperfect chord. There is no further music as he speaks to the Faeries, or on the cuts to the unicorn as he explains what has taken place.

Although the theme for the unicorn is particularly effective and on one level suits the scene, there is no depiction of the conversation. The theme is sad and melancholic, but there is no representation of the unicorn's rage, the dramatic emphasis solely shifted onto Jack with the only dialogue obscured by the music if it was not mixed down. The whole feel of this scene is of a song, verse, bridge, chorus and is in fact the music used for the song over the final scene.

Goldsmith achieves the intention of the narrative, exploring the unfolding drama in the music playing on the emotions in a different way. Tangerine Dream take the approach of ignoring the storyline and deciding to pull on the heart strings instead. Although taken out of context they both work well, Tangerine Dreams' version fails to capture the essence of this scene, to tell the narrative.

The next scene to compare is the waltz, scene 25. As with the previous example it is the music that supplies the narrative to the story. It starts with Lili, who, after being captured by the Blix and his companions, finds herself alone in a large dining room. As she turns she becomes aware of a sparkling jewellery box and moves towards it. Slowly she opens the box and lifts out a necklace, and suddenly is aware of something behind her. What she sees horrifies her, it is a Wraith-like spirit dancing in a beautiful black dress. Lili tries to avoid the spirit but slowly succumbs to its evocative dance, eventually consumed within in it.

The scene can be broken down into three sections

Goldsmith had scored the songs and the dances in pre-production and I believe that this one was included. (MUSIC EXAMPLE 20 - Waltz seduction) He begins the scene with a gentle harp introduction as Lili raises the necklace, followed by the waltz theme played on the flute. It builds and then pauses as we hear a voice say "Make her one of us" before continuing on its hypnotic ride, building to the next pause as the Wraith beckons Lili. As the strings take over the theme, Lili looks on frightened as the Wraith continues to call her until she succumbs. As they dance together the choir and the waltz becomes more frantic. She finally dances on her own motioning the dress towards her. It is at this point that we hear the choir singing a descending augmented 5th motif on each cut to the Wraith as it engulfs her.

(VIDEO EXAMPLE 24 - The waltz seduction - Goldsmith)

Goldsmith captures the essence of the seductiveness of this scene, starting with a simple theme and building continuously throughout. The music has a hypnotic quality with its swirling relentless melody that slowly builds in intensity.

Tangerine Dream start at a disadvantage in that the second section of the dance is much shorter in this version than in the European one. Their approach is somewhat different from Goldsmith's and this cue is probably the weakest in the entire score.

(MUSIC EXAMPLE 21 - The waltz seduction - Tangerine Dream)

(VIDEO EXAMPLE 25 - The waltz seduction - Tangerine Dream)

They start with a fairground organ sound that, like the Goldsmith version, pauses at the dialogue and as the Wraith beckons Lili. As she dances with the Wraith the music becomes faster until she is dancing alone. There are capture points as Lili beckons it to her, the music continuing until she looks in the mirror at the end of this sequence. Overall the music does not have any feel of seduction, relying too much on a fairground motif ('Omm-pahs' is the best way to describe it) which like the Goldsmith version is repeated, but in this case variation is only provided by speed. Goldsmith changes the orchestration and speed as Lili becomes more entangled and seduced. He uses a four bar phrase, each bar containing a small motif filling out the texture creating the seductive quality of the music. Tangerine Dream also have a four bar phrase, but three of those contain a held note, which gives the music a stilted feel.(compare EXAMPLES 20 and 21) It is for this reason that in my opinion the music does not suit the action that we see on the screen.

From the above two scenes we can see that the music is required to do more than create a mood depicting emotions or to provide a dramatic prop for an event on the screen. In these cases it is the music that has to convey the narrative, the visuals alone do not tell the story. It is therefore essential for the composer capture the correct feel and pace, and to convey the hidden narrative within. Tangerine Dream create the correct mood and pace for both of these examples, but the music itself fails to convey either the shifting emotions in the first example, or Lili's slow seduction in the second. Goldsmith's score does this perfectly, allowing his music to be governed by the narrative, adapting and moulding his music for a situation.


What can be drawn from the study of these scores is how two composers have approached the same work, and how effective these approaches are. Tangerine Dream have provided a vastly different score from their normal style, but it could be argued that even in this altered form is not appropriate to this film. The sound world that they create pulls the viewer out of the film's fantasy world by contrasting the imagery on the screen with a contemporary score inherently associated with the modern world. Their music draws too much attention to itself by not interacting and not becoming a homogeneous whole with the imagery. Goldsmith tries to create this fantasy world by enhancing the ethereal woodland scenery with a musical representation of nature, playing on our familiarity with what we come to expect in this situation and from this type of film; for example woodland bird calls, lush harmony, choirs, heroic fanfares.

It is possible to argue that Goldsmith, who also uses synthesised sounds, could also wrench the viewer from the story, but most of the sounds are enhancements to the orchestra, or reminiscent of nature, for example, bird calls. The one motif that is different is the goblin theme, which does stand out considerably from the rest of the score. Unlike Tangerine Dream's music that constantly uses synthesizer sounds, this is used only to depict one set of characters drawing our attention to them, rather than bringing our attention to the music.

Stylistic differences aside, Tangerine Dream use appropriate music for appropriate scenes by using leitmotif. The most striking of these is the unicorn theme, capturing perfectly the essence of the film and used effectively throughout the majority of the score. It is a shame however that their other themes are not as distinctive as this, with an obvious lack of a decent love theme for our two heroes. The constant repetition of the same musical statement without, or at least with very little development, does not allow their music to achieve to its potential. Goldsmith constantly develops musical ideas allowing themes to interact with the situation on the screen, whereas Tangerine Dream constantly repeat them, disregarding any changes that take place within a scene. This is seen in their use of sequenced patterns that tend to play under actions, especially in faster moving scenes like the final battle. This kind of scoring, which although it is part of their style is not appropriate in a film that requires the music to constantly change and enhance a situation. Sequenced patterns are difficult to use if they are required to stop and start around events on the screen, and so they allow them to continue far beyond their usefulness and their effectiveness. A repeated motif at appropriate moments, like Jack's fanfare from Goldsmith, is much more effective and more striking when used at specific points.

Legend as a film fails on several levels. Musically, even in its greatly dismembered and truncated version, the Goldsmith score works because of its appropriateness to the situations on the screen. He uses the same techniques that he would apply to most films to allow the viewer to become immersed in the drama. Tangerine Dream fail in most cases because stylistically their music is inappropriate, but importantly they fail to utilise the techniques in scoring for film, such as those outlined under the Methodology section, and as a result the function that music should play.

The scope of this study does not allow the investigation of film in full. It can only cover the film by taking both versions 'as is,' and does not allow scope to study the wealth of music that Goldsmith scored for the original version, or by discussing scenes where his music has been altered. Even Tangerine Dreams music was not without some interference. As this is a study of film music, it would be inappropriate to discuss the remaining music without a copy of the version that this music appeared.

However what this study does hopefully achieve is to highlight some areas and some aspects of how to score for film by contrasting different approaches and by studying their effectiveness. The rarity of having the same film scored by two composers is a valuable example for anyone studying the function of film music and allows us to see how important effective scoring can be.

1 Jonathan Benair 'The Musics for Legend' Cinefantastique No.15 Summer/Winter (1987), p38.

2 ibid p38

3 A Temp Track is temporary music added to the film before the final mix.

4 Paul Andrew MacLean 'The Music' Legend Compact Disc booklet notes. Silva Screen FILMCD045 (1992)

5 Paul Andrew Maclean 'The Music' Legend Compact Disc booklet notes. Silva Screen FILMCD045 (1992)

6 David Stoner 'The Musics for Legend' Cinefantastique No.15 Summer/Winter (1987), p39.

7 Paul MacLean has written three articles on Legend:

'From a Legend to a Dream' Cinefantastique No.15 Summer/Winter (1987), p143.

This was updated by P. MacLean on the Legend Web site, 'The Music for Legend' 6. 'What are the differences between the two versions of the score' Legend Faq Web Site

Legend Compact Disc booklet notes. Silva Screen FILMCD045 (1992)

8 Paul Andrew MacLean "The Music" Legend Compact Disc booklet notes. Silva Screen FILMCD045 (1992)

9 ibid

10 ibid

11 ibid

12 Paul Andrew MacLean 'The Music for Legend' 6. What are the differences between the two versions of the score Legend Faq Web Site.

13 G.M. Tucker 'Legend - Music by Tangerine Dream' Cinefantastique No.15 Summer/Winter (1987), p147.

14 Randall D. Larson 'The Musics for legend' Cinefantastique No.15 Summer/Winter (1987), p41.

15 This prologue does not appear in the European version.

16 Paul Andrew MacLean "The Music" Legend Compact Disc booklet notes. Silva Screen FILMCD045 (1992)

17 Fred Karlin, Rayburn Wright, On the Track. (New York, 1990), p176.

18 For example, the opening cue is used at two other times, in which it is effective, but unfortunately still containing the goblins' motif although they are not present.

19 Capture points are an event in the music that is specific to an event on the screen.

20 At this point there appears some whale sound effects that are not part of the music score, which distract from the music that is already mixed at a low level. I believe these sounds are possibly a slowed down version of Lili's "Jack" scream from scene 8.




The appendices are divided into two sections.

The first is a scene list giving a brief description of the scenes and quick reference to the music written for both versions.

The second is the results of a request for information posted on the Legend FAQ Web Site (http://www.figmentfly.com/legend/index.shtml) asking for peoples opinions on the scores to the film.



1. Woodland opening, Blix enters.

2.Darkness talks to Blix in his throne room.

3. Lili walks through the woods, with the Goblins spying on her. She approaches Nells' house and lets her washing down and enters the house.

4 Lili walks in the woods calling for Jack.


5. Lili and Jack in the woods.

6.Jack takes Lili to see the unicorns, but they are followed by the goblins.

7.Lili runs after Jack, and sings to him.

8.Lil tries to Kiss Jack, and sets a challenge to find her ring. Meanwhile the unicorn is dehorned by the goblins and the world freezes.


9.Lili runs to Nells cottage, followed by the Goblins.

10.a Jack running calling for Lili.

10.b Goblins races through the forest, Lili follows them.

11.Jack meets the Faeries.


12. Jack and the Faeries travel though the woods.

13. They find the dead unicorn and the remaining mare confronts Jack.

14. Goblin camp.

15. Jack goes to a cave and finds a coat of armour and a sword.

16. Lili watches the Goblin Camp.


17. Lili Brown Tom and the unicorn are captured by the Goblins.

18. Jack journeys to the castle.

19. The swamp and Meg Mucklebones.

20. Montage scene/Lili in the castle.


21.Falling into the Dungeon, Oona tries to seduce Jack.

22. Out of the dungeon, roaming the castle.

23. Darkness asks his father for help.

24.Lili running through the castle.

24a. Jack and Gump attacked by porcupines.

24b. Brown Tom and Screwball find the unicorn.


25 The waltz.

26. Brown Tom and Screwball meet up with Jack and Gump.

27. The kitchen.


28. Lili and Darkness talk.

29. The dungeon and Final Battle.

30. The ring/Lili awakes and farewell.
European Version Goldsmith.

Not present

Woodland music fades in, interrupted by Goblin theme. Fades out as Darkness' voice-over starts.

No music.

Lili sings "My true loves eyes", which is taken up by the orchestra. The goblin theme interrupts on the cuts.
Music becomes playful as she lets the washing down.

No music at the start. Builds to Jacks arrival. Love theme is heard on cut to Jack. Goblin theme used when we see them.

European Version Goldsmith.

Music is relaxed and playful. Stops when Lili says "Teach me rabbit".

The unicorn theme is teasingly introduced, interspersed with the semitone drop motif of the Goblin theme. Lili sings to the unicorns, but it is interrupted by a wild orchestral version of the goblin theme.

Music fades out as Lili runs in. `Bumps and Hollows' song as we see the unicorns running

No music until we see Jack under the water. The music develops the Goblin theme. Choir joins in with the Darkness theme.

European Version.

Music continues form previous scene. Stops on Lili's entrance. Mysterious harp/chime sounds as Lili looks around. Goblins theme returns and music stops on Blixs' entrance.

This scene is not present.

This scene is not present.

Light hearted to start with uses Faerie theme, but becomes a bit more serious as Gump asks Jack to explain what happened. Uses the Waltz theme from the Dress scene. Lots of capture points.

European Version.

Opening music reused including the Goblin theme although they are not present. Fades out on cut to next scene.

Slowly introduces the unicorn theme, building in intensity and changes to the series of emotions that are present.

Music from previous scene finishes abruptly. No other music.

Music slightly mysterious uses Oona's theme. On the pan shot to the sword the heroic theme is used. Heard on Brass as Jack reaches for the sword.

No music.

European Version.

Trill like motif from the Darkness Theme, more specifically the final battle. Finishes very abruptly, difficult to hear in the mix. Unsure if this is the correct music for this scene.

Low bass pizz/drum beats. Fades as Jack throws flame away.

As Screwball goes on his journey the darkness theme is used. Builds very similar to scene 8. Finishes abruptly. Again unsure is this is the correct music.

Uses Darkness theme, finishes on cut to the unicorns face.

European Version.

No music for the falling sequence. Cor Anglais theme as Plunder is taken. Oona's theme used as she tries to seduce Jack. As she transforms the love theme is heard. Returning to Oona's theme as Jack refuses to Kiss her.

No music.

No music.

Opening music reused again. Goblin theme is present although they are not there.

Scene is not present.

Scene not present.

European Version.

Quizzical music as Lili finds the box. The hypnotic waltz starts as Lili looks at the jewels. Builds dramatically as Lili is seduced.

No music.

No music to start with. When it does enter it is completely different from the rest of the score. This is the music from Psycho II. Changes in style after the fight, which is more suitable, but again I do not believe this is the original music. It uses piano as a solo which has not been used before and thus seem inappropriate.

European Version.

Uses Darkness theme as he confesses his love to Lili.

Trill motif used from Darkness theme. Action music consists of the love theme and Darkness theme. Unicorn theme used as Jack finds the horn.

Uses Love theme to build as the ring is found, and is used throughout this sequence together with the love theme. Continues into the end credits.
American Version Tangerine Dream.

Uses Love theme

Music synth glissandi, rhythmic element starts on Blixs' feet. Choir enters and continues into scene 2.

Choirs continues from previous scene. Faded very low under dialogue.

Music cross faded from previous scene. Lili's theme. No capture points on the Goblins.. Music stops as Nell enters. Music restarts as Nell touches Lili and continues into next scene.

Love theme continues. Low bass entry on Jacks entrance. On the cut to Jack a sequenced pattern starts.

American Version Tangerine Dream.

Sequenced pattern from previous scene continues. Resolves to descending bass line.

Mysterious held notes. Music stops as they sit down. Unicorn theme starts as the unicorns enter. Theme stops and music becomes suspenseful as Lili rushes forward. As unicorn is poisoned music is percussive fast moving.

Starts very faint, song section is cut.

Romantic type theme for Lili and Jack. Synth glissando as Jack jumps in the water. Low choir with further synth glissando as the Globulin's approach the unicorn.

American Version.

Ostinato pattern. Small theme for Lili. Fades out as she runs. As the goblins approach mechanical/industrial music starts. Fades out as they leave.

No music.

Percussive music, similar to the Goblin earlier chasing the unicorns.

Large metallic clash sounds as Gump enters. Faerie theme is `fairground' in style.

American Version.

Pan pipe motif from the unicorn theme.

Unicorn theme. Repeated throughout, builds towards the end of the scene.

This scene is not present.

Starts with a pizzicato motif together with more metallic type sounds. Returns to this again after a string pad sound as Oona transforms.

Music from previous scene fades. There is a bass pizzicato effect. Panpipe motif from the unicorn theme on the cut to the sunset.

American Version.

Starts on the cut to the goblins, very percussive. This stops and restarts with an ostinato pattern that carries on into next scene.

Low whistle type sound, music continues into next scene.

Sequenced pattern as screwball goes on his journey. Stops as Meg speaks and continues again with a sequenced pattern as Jack kills Meg.

Continues from previous scene. Choir sounds as we see Lili, panpipe motif as we cut to the unicorn.

American Version.

Bass note held from previous scene together with sequenced patterns. Metallic sounds as they fall. Love theme heard as Oona transforms into Lili. Guitar sounds used as they escape.

Pulsing synth and guitar sounds, faded to an almost inaudible level.

String/choir pad.

Choir drone. Also uses a motif from the opening sequence.

No music.

Sleigh bell sound with bass note.

American Version.

Bass note held from previous scene. Waltz music starts when Lili looks at the jewels. Fairground in style, does not highlight the seduction.

Uses guitar type sounds. Fairground Faerie them used for Brown Tom and Screwball.

Sequenced pattern action type music. Guitar pitch bends. Percussion. Unicorn theme used as Jack goes to the shaft of light. As they talk the music is faded very low.

American Version.

Low held bass note. Pan pipe motif used on setting sun.. As Darkness charges at Lili music is metallic and percussive.

Sequenced patterns used in action music. Darkness theme introduced at the end.

Uses Unicorn theme, but with added lyrics, becomes Darker as an image of Darkness appears just before the final fade (not present in the European version) Cross fades into another song for the closing titles.

The following pages are results of a request for peoples' opinions on the scores to Legend that was placed on the American web site Legend FAQ.

The first Letter is from Sean Murphy who runs the site. His personal opinion is that the Tangerine Dream score has no place in Legend. He interestingly notes that he is surprised by the some of the e-mails that he receives from people who prefer the Tangerine Dream score to the Goldsmith, and the results of the e-mails that I received backs this up.

Sean's colleague Geoff Wright states that he believes that most people in America prefer the Tangerine Dream score simply because this is the version that they have seen.

Pentti Lajunen from Finland says that reading on Newsgroups and Web sites she feels that the general opinion is that the Goldsmith score is regarded as superior to the Tangerine Dream score.

Out of the nine emails I received (and this is from people who have an interest in Legend and visit the web site) four preferred Tangerine Dream (although one had only seen the American version), four preferred Goldsmith, and one did not give their personal opinion.

I have included a copy of the request for information as it appeared on the web page.

The E-mails have not been edited, the only material I removed was codes in the e-mail address information.

From - Thu Mar 05 17:48:55 1998
Date: Tue, 3 Mar 1998 22:34:25 -0800
To: ruddtp@rcm.ac.uk
From: Sean Murphy <figment@figmentfly.com>
Subject: Re: Legend

Hello Tobie,

Just to let you know that the Legend version shown on BBC2 in the UK over Christmas was the American version of Legend. BBC have shown both versions, but this time it was indeed in semi-Widscreen and was also unedited as far as I can tell.

Thank you for the information. Is the european version shown in semi-widescreen when it is played on TV? I'm going to add your information to the faq soon.

If you're wondering why I pay so much attention to this, its because I am currently on a Masters course in Film music at the Royal College of Music and am writing my dissertation on Legend, comparing the two approaches to the music score. I would be interested if you could tell me what you think is the general opinion of which is the better score, or have most people in the states only seen the Goldsmith version.

Actually, very few people in the US have seen the Goldsmith version. Only the American (Tangerine Dream version) is available in the US. You have to search high and low and get a bootleg copy in order to see the Goldsmith version.

I believe the Goldsmith version is the only version of the score that should ever be used for LEGEND. I like the Tangerine Dream music on it's own but it has no place in LEGEND at all.

I have been surprised, however, by the number of e-mails I get of people expressing the fact that they love the Tangerine Dream score in the film. I even had one person finally see the Goldsmith version only to state that the music in the Goldsmith version was not as good as the music in the
Tangerine Dream version. My jaw hit the floor when I read that. What are your opinions on the scores? If you ask me more direct questions I'll be able to do a better job of answering them. :-)

If anyone at the Legend site could send me their opinions I would be most grateful, or if any visitors to the web site could pass on their views.

I'll add your request to the FAQ if you'll promise to let me read you paper when it's finished. Deal? :-) (I'll add the info to the FAQ soon, when I do the next update in a few days.)


From - Thu Mar 05 17:48:55 1998
Date: Wed, 04 Mar 1998 17:22:34 -0800
From: Geoffrey Wright <geoff@halcyon.com>
To: ruddtp@rcm.ac.uk
CC: Sean Murphy <figment@figmentfly.com>
Subject: Legend scores


Sean forwarded your message to me. We have both worked on the Legend FAQ.

...I would be interested if you could tell me what you think is the general opinion of which is the better score, or have most people in the states only seen the Goldsmith version. If anyone at the Legend site could send me their opinions I would be most grateful, or if any visitors to the web site could pass on their views.

It's my opinion that most in America prefer the Tangerine Dream version, mostly because this is the version they have heard. That is unless you are speaking of hard core film and film score fans, then the balance tips way over in favor of the Goldsmith score. I think the Goldsmith score is far superior--in fact one of Goldsmith's finest works.

Geoff Wright

From - Mon Apr 27 13:17:18 1998
To: <ruddtp@rcm.ac.uk>
Subject: Legend Score
Date: Wed, 15 Apr 1998 22:55:18 -0700

I have only heard the Tangerine Dream score, but I love it. It is the one that they use on the Legend Movie Soundtrack that is in the video stores here in Oregon. I listen to it often.

smerritt in oregon

From - Mon Mar 10 07:16:09 1986
To: ruddtp@rcm.ac.uk
Date: Mon, 9 Mar 1998 20:58:38 -0500
Subject: Legend Music
From: gonzo111@juno.com (Lita M Tirak)

Hello Tobie!

I don't know how much I can help you with the effectiveness of the music to the movie. I live in the U.S. so I have only seen the Tangerine Dream version. However, I think I can see what the difference has made to the film. Tangerine Dream is an eclectic music group that started back in
the 1960s, and their styles have progressed. The music sounds very much like New Age, and successfully gave the film an MTV-ish appeal.

However, the epic quality of the story was probably better told with with the orchestrations by the Academy Award winning Goldsmith. I really believe that something was lost when this soundtrack was eliminated. It is truly an amazing thing to make real instruments sound like magic and

Of course you picked a really obscure movie, because not only does it have multiple soundtracks but also 30minutes was cut from the film! It is really hard to compare, I think. But good luck to you...

Yours, Lita

From - Thu Feb 19 18:04:15 1998
Return-Path: <plajunen@alpha.hut.fi>
Date: Wed, 11 Mar 1998 03:34:47 +0200
From: Pentti J Lajunen <plajunen@cc.hut.fi>
Organization: Helsinki University of Technology
To: ruddtp@rcm.ac.uk
CC: plajunen@cc.hut.fi
Subject: Your inquiry about Legend score
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii

Hi, you wrote to the Legend FAQ site and asked about the two scores for this movie:

"I am currently on a Masters course in Film music at the Royal College of Music and am writing my dissertation on Legend, comparing the two approaches to the music score. I would be interested if you could tell me what you think is the general opinion of which is the better score, or have most people in the states only seen the Goldsmith version. If anyone at the Legend site could send me their opinions I would be most grateful, or if any visitors to the web site could pass on their views."

The problem with the general opinion is that not many people have *seen* both versions. Americans have their Tangerine Dream scored version, and those who loved it, probably are satisfied with it and won't bother looking for the other version. And those who disliked it are even less willing to go through the trouble of finding the other version. They don't own equipment for watching PAL videos, so the only source for the Goldsmith scored version has been imported Japanese LD. The same applies, in an opposite way, to Europe as well, altough its easier to import laserdiscs from America, because people here are more used to multi-standard videoformats. Legend wasn't a hit anywhere, so its only those few die hard fans who have seen both versions. For instance, it took many years for me to finally see the TD scored version when it was shown on British television couple of years ago (somebody taped it for me).

And to fully realize what's going on in those two versions, I think its essential to watch the movie, not to listen to soundtracks, because alone they distort the view how well the music backs up the story. I've read newsgroups of the internet several years and it seems that clearly majority of people prefer Goldsmith's music, although I can't say if have they seen the movie(s) or just listened the soundtracks.

I myself think Goldsmith's music is vastly superior to Tangerine Dream's, altough I might be a bit biased, because I'm pissed off by the butchering of Scott's work (it probably caused him to leave scifi/fantasy). Goldsmith's music has more "fairy magic", has greater texture and it reacts to events and motives of characters in greater detail. The movie was made originally with songs and a dance sequence. Leaving those out in American version thinned the story, and made it more straight americanized action adventure. Tangerine Dream's music on the other hand, seemed to be more just "wall-paper" music to set-up the mood. It played straight through many scenes without too much reaction. And those cheesy songs by Jon Anderson and Ferry made it even worse.

I rambled so much about seeing the movie because Tangerine Dream's score actually sounds quite good alone on the soundtrack. I have it on vinyl and its quite ok listening. Goldsmith's score, on the other hand, does work much better with the movie than alone, its the soul of the movie. Incredible piece of work. On the cd alone, it gets a bit "heavy" at times, and is probably one of the reasons why some people prefer TD's soundtrack, although songs by Anderson and Ferry might be a further reason for their fans to look for it more.

Hopefully this helped some.

Pentti Lajunenplajunen@cc.hut.fi

From - Thu Mar 13 07:46:15 1986
Date: Wed, 11 Mar 1998 17:56:29 -0600
To: ruddtp@rcm.ac.uk
From: HaloAcroma <umbriel@centurion.flash.net>
Subject: LEGEND

hello Tobie :)

my name is Jason, i came across your request for info on the Legend scoring.

the truth is that most fans of Legend in the states(which their aren't many actually :( ) have only seen the US Version featuring the Tangerine Dream scoring.

i have both copies of Legend, i've heard both Goldsmith and TD.

so here is my own opinion:

Jerry Goldsmith is an orchestral composer whose works i've listened to and enjoyed in numerous films again and again.. he is highly talented and creative in regards to classical scoring, he's even innovative in that field..using new instruments and soundscaping to alter our original
impressions of symphonic architecture.

Tangerine Dream is a German industrial/experimental outfit who've been playing for close to 25 years now. I have heard several of their cd's as well, some of their music is relaxing..however, i have come to the personal opinion that Tangerine Dream for the most part is just approaching their
music from a emotional and groundless tinkering.

so, this is going to sound wierd to you i imagine....but oddly enough...i actually enjoy the Tangerine Dream version much more than Jerry Goldsmiths.I have several of Jerry's things and i really like Jerry a lot more than Tangerine Dream. it's strange that i would like the band i like less, but
here's my impression on why that is.

if you listen to the Goldsmith soundtrack right after the Tangerine Dream..or vice versa...i noticed that although Jerry Goldsmith does try to incorporate synth and general fantastic weirdness into his scoring, it just doesn't work well at all..maybe it's just because he wasn't used to making that kind of Fantasy music, or maybe it's because he simply didn't think that Legend would be the fantastic movie it was(apparently for some lame and asinine reasoning neither did most critics :) go figure..i love
Legend's plot myself.).

Now, Tangerine Dream...they usually quite frankly suck. However, either they really REALLY liked the idea of the movie and put all their talent together on Legend's soundtrack, or just accidentally had inspiration,i'll never know...what i do think is that Tangerine Dream's scoring, despite all rationale..is one of the best and most wild movie soundtracks of all time(it's also Tangerine Dreams best album :) i've listened to about 6 of TD's cd's and 18 of Jerry Goldsmith's and Goldsmith far outdoes TD.) , of course :) having one of my favorite singers on the album doesn't hurt. Bryan Ferry is my third favorite rock artist after Trent Reznor and Milla Jovovich.

at any rate, i know i'm not giving you the deep and informed answer you might want, i'm not an art critic perse..what i do know is that although Goldsmith is the better artist of the two, Tangerine's score is much more suitable to the theme and is more innovative overall in presenting never before (or again) heard meter and unusual hooks and melodic chorus. and i think that is what makes the better musician for a project, in fact, that's what defines artistry itself..the idea of reaching out in a new direction, presenting a concept no one else has done that has a purpose and fullfills an emotional need in the audience through the ideals the sound or sung lyrics, the painting or the vehicle provides. the TD version does a better overall job of that.

hehe, i've written longer than i have in quite sometime today :)

hope this was of any use to you and good luck on your Thesis.

Jason Jones

From - Thu Mar 13 07:46:15 1986
Date: Fri, 13 Mar 1998 02:42:52 -0500 (EST)
From: Paul Maclain <skye@lightlink.com>
To: ruddtp@rcm.ac.uk


I was very interested to read your letter to the Legend webpage.

The film was released with Tangerine Dream's music here in the states, so few people have heard Goldsmith's score in the film in the US. Although I tried to be tactful about my opinion in my article, I personally think the Tangerine Dream score is rubbish, totally inappropriate to the film. Jerry Goldsmith one the other hand, I consider to be one of the finest composer for film of all time, and Legend one of his very best scores. I could go into it here, but most of what I have to say about the two scores is all in my article where I compare the two scores.

If you are looking for more information on the Goldsmith score, I would try to get ahold of Mike Ross-Trevor, who was the recording engineer for the score, as well as having helped put together the expanded CD. I'm afraid I do not know how to contact him, but I know he is attached to Witfield Street recording studios in London. I have not met him, so I cannot say for sure, but I understand he is a pleasant man.

Cinemascore magazine featured a lengthy interview with Tangerine Dream ten years ago where they talked all about the score for Legend (a truncated version of the interview also appeared in Cinefantastique). Cinemascore also got some brief comments from Ridley Scott, and tried to interview Goldsmith as well, but he was acrimonious about the whole business and would not comment (tho they did run a brief LA Times interview with him, which had appeared shortly before the film came out).

Anyway, hope this was of some help. Best of fortune on your dissertation!

Paul MacLean

From - Wed Mar 19 08:04:28 1986
From: "Gignac, Angie" <AGIGNAC@epdiv1.env.gov.bc.ca>
To: <ruddtp@rcm.ac.uk>
Subject: legend soundtrack
Date: Wed, 18 Mar 1998 09:52:00 -0800

Hello Tobie,

I saw your question on the Legend FAQ page. I am most familiar with the Tangerine Dream version of the soundtrack, but I did hear the European version a few times in Japan. I much the Tangerine Dream version. I know that it is more "cheesy" and very '80's, with all the synthesizer music. However, it suits the mood of the movie. I was especially dissappointed with the European version of the Dance scene. It did not match the movements of Lily and the Dancer as well, and was not as stirring. Of course, it is hard to be objective, because I saw the version I am used to many times before I saw the European version, and that makes me biased.

I hope this helps. Good luck on your Masters.

Angie Gignac
Victoria, Canada

From - Mon Apr 27 13:17:18 1998
Return-Path: <dstolp@students.wisc.edu>
Date: Sat, 11 Apr 1998 04:12:43 -0500
To: ruddtp@rcm.ac.uk
From: DS <dstolp@students.wisc.edu>
Subject: Legend
Mime-Version: 1.0


In regards to your thesis on the Goldsmith vs. the Tangerine Dream score, in the US only the Tangerine Dream score is released with the video; hence I don't know of anyone who has seen the film with the goldsmith version. Incidently, I have both the UK release and the US release, and I find the US/Tangerine Dream release to be much more entertaining.

If there is anything else I can answer, please feel free to email me back.


David Stolp

© 1995-1998 Tobie Rudd. All rights reserved.

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