Secondhand Lions

Patrick Doyle

" Wonderful breeze of various styles "

Written by Thomas Glorieux - Review of the regular release

Patrick Doyle is a master of all genres. It doesn't happen often that a composer can swell from a grand Shakespearean play to childlike innocence. But that's what Henry V and A Little Princess have shown us. So Patrick Doyle was a perfect match for the movie Secondhand Lions, in witch a young boy spends the vacation with his 2 eccentric uncles and learns that there is more about adventure. More ,that it's often found in the most unlikely places.

Doyle's music is recommendable because it introduces various styles together in ways they normally wouldn't match. Yet Doyle did it all right, and so we transform from sweet childlike innocence to bold swashbuckling adventure. Sadly, this score suffers the most from its often short track times.

The soundtrack opens at least boldly enough with "Main Titles", carrying a swashbuckling performance of the main theme. After this, styles begin to shift. In "The Trunk" we discover ethnic material, in "Walter Runs Away" we have melodrama and in "Secondhand Arrival" we hear percussion with vocals.

Of course time in not on our side, leaving no room for such great development in "Fireside Chat" or Cutthroat Island swashbuckling in "Hub Rescues Jasmine" and the expanded "The Assassins" and "Sheik Swordfights". I wished we had more time for these.

The emotional theme, which I call the childlike theme is first truly discovered in "Be my Uncle". "Stan Lies to Walter" wraps an emotional burden around this theme while we discover more heartfelt emotion during "She Was a Real Lion", namely a beautiful melodramatic moment stating the vocal talents of Patrick Doyle Jr.. "Walter Comes Home" and "Nice to Meet You" are the finales stating the main and childlike theme in their best possible performances.

Secondhand Lions proves Doyle has got a heart both for drama as adventure. After all the album proves aplenty we have lot's to discover when listening to a Patrick Doyle score. That we could receive a better listening experience if one would mix a couple of tracks together is true, it truly would help the experience. But once this album's up and running, you receive a lot of emotion due to the development in both the story and characters. And then Secondhand Lions proves you how easily it can be. Sometimes music just needs to be so lush at the end, that the preparation is nothing but a first difficult step you must take.


1. Main Titles (1.33)
2. The Trunk (1.36)
3. The Plunger (1.05)
4. Walter Runs Away (1.23)
5. Fireside Chat (2.50)
6. Foreign Legion (0.45)
7. Secondhand Arrival ** (1.05)
8. I Must Meet This Man (0.27)
9. Hub Meets Jasmine (1.56)
10. Hub Rescues Jasmine (0.49)
11. Lion Hunt (1.10)
12. Cornfield Jungle ** (1.02)
13. The Assassins (2.39)
14. Sheik Swordfight (2.39) Excellent track
15. Goodnight Kid (1.02)
16. Waking Hub (0.56)
17. Died in Childbirth (1.07)
18. Be My Uncle (1.09)
19. Finding the Money (2.40)
20. Stan Lies to Walter (2.48)
21. She Was a Real Lion * (3.21) Excellent track
22. Walter Leaves (1.56)
23. Maybe You Don't (1.01)
24. Walter Comes Home (3.41) Excellent track
25. Nice to Meet You (1.23) Excellent track
26. Piano Suite (2.54)

* Performed by Patrick Doyle Junior
** Performed by Ola Onabule

Total Length: 45.52
(click to rate this score)  
(total of 15 votes - average 4.3/5)

Released by

New Line Records NLR39027 (regular release 2003)

Conducted by

James Shearman

Orchestrations by

Patrick Doyle, James Shearman & Lawrence Ashmore

Performed by

The Slovak Radio Symphony Orchestra