The NeverEnding Story II: The Next Chapter
" Fantasia can arise anew, from your dreams and wishes, Robert "
Written by Thomas Glorieux
- Review of
the regular release
The NeverEnding Story II: The Next Chapter is the sequel to the highly successful and highly regarded fantasy film The NeverEnding Story of 1984. This sequel turned out to be less successful than the first one, receiving mostly negative reviews from fans and critics. Perhaps it had to do with the fact no one but one original cast member returned from the first film (Thomas Hill as Mr. Koreander). So Bastian and Atreyu were performed by different young actors, thereby throwing away the wonderful magical feeling of the first film. Composer Klaus Doldinger didn't return for the ride as well, but song writer Giorgio Moroder did. His songs here are accompanied by the orchestral score of composer Robert Folk.
Robert Folk was making a name for himself in the late 80's and early 90's, and The NeverEnding Story II is definitely one that sticked in the memory. Of course the difference with Klaus Doldinger's music is feel able, and yet somehow both scores work well alongside each other. No real similarities can be made with the music of Doldinger. The only returning element is the wonderful classic theme song that appears here in a weaker reboot (Joe Milner) and a lovely orchestral arrangement "The NeverEnding Story (Reprise)", but apart from that Folk was able to bring us his own ideas from start to finish.
And that's exactly what you get. Everything you hear here is typical Robert Folk material. The majestic soaring main theme with magical choir in "Searching for Fantasia" (I love the way it opens with the first notes of Moroder's main theme), the wonderful sense of adventure through that very same main theme in "Falkor's Quest", the typical whirling fanfares in the thunderous "Flight of the Dragon" and "Morning in Fantasia", the more atonal rhythmic action music in "The Giants' Attack" (linking itself with the harsher material of Beastmaster II), or the lovely flute moments in "Silver Lake", everything sounds exactly like we remembered him.
The score does begin majestically with such highlights as "Searching for Fantasia", "Falkor's Quest" and "Flight of the Dragon", but sadly loses steam when we reach the second part. The harsher sounds of the only action track ("The Giants' Attack"), the darkness of "Xayide's Castle", not everything sounds as mesmerizing as it began. But the main theme keeps you bedazzled until the end. And the nice orchestral arrangement of Moroder's theme with the choir over it feels brief but stunning nonetheless. So for admirers of strong orchestral music, Robert Folk's The NeverEnding Story II should not remain a mystery for you for long. The only problem is that it costs quite a bit of money today (90$), and that the recording sadly lacks a bit of oomph for such a grand orchestral score.
1. Searching for Fantasia (2.19) Excellent track
2. Dreams we Dream: Joe Milner * (4.23)
3. Heaven's Just a Heartbeat: Joe Milner * (4.10)
4. The Neverending Story: Joe Milner * (3.29)
5. Dreams we Dream (Instrumental) * (4.27)
6. Bastian's Dream (2.05)
7. Falkor's Quest (2.33) Excellent track
8. Flight of the Dragon (3.32) Excellent track
9. Silver Mountains (1.29)
10. Morning in Fantasia (1.08)
11. The Childlike Empress (2.15)
12. The Giants' Attack (2.11)
13. Silver Lake (2.54)
14. Xayide's Castle (1.26)
15. Atreyu's Return to the Great Plains (3.10)
16. Bastian's Lost Memories (1.03)
17. Silver City (2.08)
18. The Neverending Story (Reprise-Orchestral Version) * (0.54) Excellent track
* Written by Georgio Moroder
Total Length: 45.54
(click to rate this score)
(total of 3 votes - average 3.67/5)
WEA Records 9031 72657-2 (regular release 1990)
Conducted & Orchestrated by