Film Music Evangelism: “Main Title” from The Unsaid

don davisBefore last month I’d never heard of The Unsaid, and after watching the trailer and looking into it I have no real interest in seeing this 2001 film. But a recent visit to Don Davis’ studio found this score in my hands, and I was immediately bewitched by the main theme. It’s a wonderful score overall, and the theme is nicely developed and laced throughout. I’ve been on a voyage of Don Davis discovery lately, and this particular effort has been a major highlight. (I would love to see Davis scoring more films, but I’m not sure he’s interested.)

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A nervous, wavering string chord stirs before the theme’s entrance. Then solo piano commences the delicate melody, at first uncertain, then confident—a simple, insistent, and tragic idea that beautifully hesitates with a suspension at the end of each phrase. Strings accompany with low and assuring chords. A brief interlude: high, quavering strings repeat over broken chords on the piano.

The strings remain high as the melody passes to the very human, emotive voice of the oboe. Simple string chords gently lower the piece back down, into the mire of an unresolved sustain and the unsupported hint at another key theme from the score on English horn.

The Unsaid is a poignant and dramatic work, richly rooted in this delicate piano theme—which immediately wormed its way into my brain and continues to haunt.