Turandot Wuxia Fantasy
October 16, 2021
Simon Franglen’s Score for Chinese Fantasy CURSE OF TURANDOT Released by Milan
The new epic Chinese fantasy/action movie THE CURSE OF TURANDOT (aka, simply, TURANDOT) follows Princess Turandot who is cursed by a mysterious power emanating from three Mazovian bracelets that were given to her as birthday gifts and these bracelets turned the princess to become cruel and she loses her humanity. Directed by Xiaolong Zheng, known for directing the Chinese TV series EMPRESS IN THE PALACE, LEGEND OF MIYUE, RED SORHUM, the film stars Dylan Sprouse, Collin Chou, Wen Jiang, Xiaotong Guan, and Fredrik Yderström.
Writing about the movie in geekoutpost, columnist Marc notes that “the film adaptation has not made it clear just how closely it will adapt any previous iterations of the story but clearly, it demonstrates embracing the fantasy and martial arts elements that look quite pleasing to the eye.” He also adds, concerning any “white-savior” issues people may have with the casting, “We also have it on good authority that [Dylan] Sprouse’s Mandarin is quite accurate… In fact, one user on Facebook with insight on the story had this to say in the comments on the trailer: ‘Turandot is a Puccini opera about a Chinese princess courted by the prince of Tartary, Calaf, who is distinctly not Asian in all versions of the opera. Part of the point is that the prince and princess are from vastly different regions in the world. Tartary was predominantly made up of Russia and Siberia. Whether that means he should look white idk, but the whole point of the play is that he is not a Chinese prince’.”
The movie has been scored by American composer Simon Franglen, known for his work with James Horner, including his completion of THE MAGNIFICENT SEVEN following Horner’s death, as well as scoring Pierre Morel’s 2018 crime drama PEPPERMINT, and is slated to compose the music for James Cameron’s next AVATAR movies.
Jon Mansell has reviewed Franglen’s the orchestral soundtrack in his latest Soundtrack Supplement post, writing that the score “matches the action with proud and powerful themes that support and enhance every second of the movie. It is a grand sounding work and is brimming with action cues that thunder and boom along performed by brass, percussion and strings. As well as the action material the composer has also fashioned haunting and delicate themes that have to them an oriental flavor, these affecting and alluring tone poems are truly beautiful and stand out above the remainder of the score.”
The digital soundtrack has been released by Milan, now available on Amazon and other streaming and digital music purveyors.
Watch the film’s trailer (with English subtitles.):