"Who Is Killing The Great Chefs Of Europe?"
Varese Sarabande Vintage Soundtracks
16 Tracks/Disc Time: 31:28
Comedic murder mysteries as well as serious ones were making the wave during the 1970's including a remake of "Murder On The Orient Express" directed by Sidney Lumet and "The Long Goodbye" directed by the late Robert Altman as well as the comedies, "The Cheap Detective" starring Peter Falk, "Murder By Death" starring the late Peter Sellers and "Who Is Killing The Great Chefs Of Europe?" directed by Ted Kotcheff ("First Blood"). The film is based on the novel by Nan and Ivan Lyons, the film revolves around a murder mystery as one by one, the greatest Chefs in Europe are being killed. The intriguing part of the murders is that each chef is killed in the same manner that their own special dish is prepared in. Fear starts to set in as many food critics and the (many) self-proclaimed greatest Chefs in Europe demand the mystery be solved before they become the next victims. The film featured a large international cast that featured George Segal ("The Hot Rock"), Jacqueline Bisset ("Rich And Famous") and Robert Morley ("Oh Heavenly Dog") amongst others.
What made the film so good was the added bonus of having Oscar Winner Henry Mancini provide the stellar music to the film. Mancini was in a bit of a transitional phase of his film career as the films changed from orchestrial driven scores in the late 60's up until John Williams' "Star Wars" brought the orchestra back en vogue as directors scrambled to gain the services of Jerry Goldsmith, Miklos Rosza, Elmer Bernstein, David Shire and Mancini himself. "Who Is Killing The Great Chefs Of Europe?" is one of those scores that fits perfectly to enhance the film and make it that much better as well as the fact that Mancini could score this film easily in his sleep with loads of fun to be had.
"Theme From Who Is Killing The Great Chefs Of Europe? (Main Title)" opens the album with a classical elegance full of regal and fun nobility with Mancini's melodic touch that has an air of mystery to it much his future scores to both "The Great Mouse Detective" and "Without A Clue" a decade later, would also feature some wonderful thematic material. An air of mystery fills the air with tracks such as "Well Done Louis", the very sinister strains of "Italian Soup", "Bombs Away/Natasha's Theme", and "Who Is Killing The Great Chefs Of Europe" and some really playful comedic moments in "Pesche!", "The Moveable Feast", and "Fiery Finale (Theme From The Great Chefs Of Europe) that really match the nicely elegant and enjoyable tone of the film. Mancini's deft and melodic orchestrations that feature a wonderful classical feel to it that is alot of fun and inspired. Mancini as he usually does, provides us with a beautiful love theme for the character of Natasha in "Natasha's Theme" featuring a wonderful piano solo by Mancini himself which is rapturous and intoxicating as his many love themes usually are and makes a triumphant return in "Natasha's Theme (End Credits)" putting this fun little score to a close.
This is the first ever release of the original LP album in any format and is a great introduction to Varese Sarabande's new limited edition vintage soundtrack imprint that seems poised to bring soundtrack collectors albums that have been long neglected on LP by the CD format. This album is a very positive start and fans of Henry Mancini will happily enjoy it in every facet as with many of the recent Mancini releases that include "Breakfast At Tiffany's", "Days Of Wine And Roses", and "Sunflower" that fit this great group. Thumbs Up! Fun!