Gremlins is a 1984 American black comedy horror film directed by Joe Dante and written by Chris Columbus, and starring Zach Galligan, Phoebe Cates, Hoyt Axton, Polly Holliday and Frances Lee McCain, with Howie Mandel providing the voice of Gizmo, the main mogwai character. It draws on legends of folkloric mischievous creatures that cause malfunctions—"gremlins"—in the British Royal Air Force going back to World War II. The story follows a young man who receives a strange creature as a pet, which then spawns other creatures who transform into small, destructive, aggressive monsters that all wreak havoc on a whole town on Christmas Eve.
1-1 Max Steiner / Jerry Goldsmith– Fanfare In C / The Shop / The Little One
Composed By [Fanfare In C] – Max Steiner 4:30
1-2 Jerry Goldsmith– Late For Work 1:46
1-3 Jerry Goldsmith– Mrs. Deagle / That Dog 2:22
1-4 Jerry Goldsmith– The Gift 1:45
1-5 Jerry Goldsmith– First Aid 2:17
1-6 Jerry Goldsmith– Spilt Water 3:02
1-7 Jerry Goldsmith– A New One 1:10
1-8 Jerry Goldsmith– The Lab / Old Times 2:35
1-9 Jerry Goldsmith– The Injection 2:56
1-10 Jerry Goldsmith– Snack Time / The Wrong Time 1:49
1-11 Jerry Goldsmith– The Box 1:24
1-12 Jerry Goldsmith– First Aid 1:39
1-13 Jerry Goldsmith– Disconnected / Hurry Home 1:03
1-14 Jerry Goldsmith– Kitchen Fight 4:06
1-15 Jerry Goldsmith– Dirty Linen 0:43
1-16 Jerry Goldsmith– The Pool 1:07
1-17 Jerry Goldsmith– The Plow / Special Delivery 1:16
1-18 Jerry Goldsmith– High Flyer 2:22
1-19 Jerry Goldsmith– Too Many Gremlins 2:06
1-20 Jerry Goldsmith– No Santa Claus 3:27
1-21 Jerry Goldsmith– After Theatre 1:39
1-22 Jerry Goldsmith– Theatre Escape / Stripe Is Loose / Toy Dept. / No Gizmo 4:36
1-23 Jerry Goldsmith– The Fountain / Stripe's Death 5:42
1-24 Jerry Goldsmith– Goodbye, Billy 2:56
1-25 Jerry Goldsmith– End Title / The Gremlin Rag 4:10
1-26 Jerry Goldsmith– Blues 2:17
1-27 Jerry Goldsmith– Mrs. Deagle (Film Version) 1:27
1-28 Jerry Goldsmith– God Rest You Merry, Gentlemen 1:12
1-29 Jerry Goldsmith– After Theatre (With "Silent Night") 1:36
1-30 Jerry Goldsmith– After Theatre (Without "Silent Night") 1:36
1-31 Milt Franklyn– Rabbit Rampage 0:47
1-32 Jerry Goldsmith– The Gremlin Rag (Full Version) 3:35
1-33 Jerry Goldsmith– Gizmo's New Song 0:35
1-34 Jerry Goldsmith– Gizmo's Trumpet 0:30
2-1 Michael Sembello– Gremlins...Mega Madness 3:52
2-2 Quarterflash– Make It Shine Written-By – Marv Ross 4:11
2-3 Peter Gabriel– Out Out 7:02
2-4 Jerry Goldsmith– The Gift 4:58
2-5 Jerry Goldsmith– Gizmo 4:14
2-6 Jerry Goldsmith– Mrs. Deagle 2:54
2-7 Jerry Goldsmith– The Gremlin Rag 4:13
View CD Page at FSM Site (More Details)
Chris Columbus was a fledgling writer when Steven Spielberg optioned his screenplay about little creatures terrorizing small-town America. By the time Amblin Productions filmed Gremlins in 1984, Spielberg and director Joe Dante had transformed the straightforward horror film into something far more comic, while retaining some memorable Grand Guignol moments. A combination of cuddliness, edgy comedy and shocking violence turned the film into a sensation, rendering it one of the biggest hits of the year.
A key element in the film’s success was the imaginative meld of traditional orchestral writing and cutting-edge electronics provided by frequent Joe Dante collaborator Jerry Goldsmith. The music for Gremlins is a fan favorite that has long been recognized as one of Goldsmith’s most original works. Most of it has never been available in a legitimate release—until now.
At the center of the score is a ragtime theme played on synthesizer—a raucous celebration of mayhem that harkens back to the early days of animation yet gives the music a funky, contemporary twist.
This is balanced by a heart-warming lyrical theme for the endearing mogwai character, Gizmo (which doubles as a love theme for the young couple portrayed by Zach Galligan and Phoebe Cates). An off-kilter waltz theme for Polly Holliday’s modern-day equivalent of the Wicked Witch of the West may be Goldsmith’s most outrageous comic confection. Solo fiddle invokes the devil (as in Herrmann’s The Devil and Daniel Webster), eerie bells (both acoustic and electronic) invoke the mystery of the mogwai, and pulse-pounding action music aptly supports the wild physical antics of the destructive creatures.
Disc one of this 2CD set features the premiere release of the complete score for Gremlins, mastered from the original PCM live stereo mixes by Bruce Botnick, supervising engineer of the original recording sessions. Disc two features a recreation of the 1984 soundtrack album, billed as a “Specially Priced 7-Cut Mini Album” with three pop songs on side one and a 16:12 suite from Goldsmith’s score on side two.
FSM’s 28-page booklet includes a reminiscence from audio engineer Botnick as well as a detailed essay on film and score by Jeff Bond and Mike Matessino (incorporating comments from an interview with director Dante).
Fans of Goldsmith and Gremlins are urged to purchase these CDs immediately, but be warned: Do not get the discs wet and absolutely never play them after midnight!