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The Omega Man (1971)
Music by Ron Grainer
The Omega Man The Omega Man
Click to enlarge images.
Price: $39.95
Limited #: 4000
View CD Page at SAE Store
Line: Silver Age
CD Release: March 2000
Catalog #: Vol. 3, No. 2
# of Discs: 1

This was the original 2000 FSM edition of this classic sci-fi score. It is long out of print but used copies may become available from time to time, or see the new (and improved) "2.0" edition here.

In the almost three decades since its release in 1971, The Omega Man has become a cult classic on the level of Charlton Heston's other science fiction forays Planet of the Apes and Soylent Green. In The Omega Man, Heston portrays Robert Neville, a military scientist who has developed an experimental vaccine just in time to spare himself from the onslaught of a devastating biological war. Neville has become the last man on Earth, doggedly keeping up the appearance of a civilized existence in his heavily fortified townhouse in the midst of the ghost town that was once Los Angeles.

But the last man on Earth is not alone. At each sunset a vicious tribe of Lluddite barbarians, the "Family," emerges from the shadows to loot and burn. They're led by Matthias (Anthony Zerbe), a former news commentator who's determined to reverse the terrible effects of humanity's stewardship of planet Earth. Neville is the last remaining symbol of the world Matthias and his diseased followers mean to destroy, and every nightfall he fights off hordes of these zombies while trying to track down their secret nest. The Omega Man is an action-adventure, a nightmarish thriller, a vivid comic book melodrama and a parable with strong political overtones, with Heston as an archetypal conservative hero facing down an army of counterculture terrorists intent on destroying what remains of human technological society. While Heston's Neville was clearly the hero, Zerbe's unctuous, robed villain Matthias was equally compelling.

One of the lasting artifacts of the film is composer Ron Grainer's beautiful pop-flavored score, which mixes a witch's brew of elements (baroque, pop, jazz, avant garde and straight dramatic orchestral scoring) into a seamless and highly melodic whole. Launching with a gorgeously elegiac baroque theme, Grainer's score boasts distinctive and accessible melodies for Neville, the Family, and the orphaned remnants of humanity that Neville discovers have been hiding from them both. With strong orchestral performances, unusual percussion effects and the distinctive sounds of two vintage electric organs, Grainer's The Omega Man score earns its reputation as one of the most asked-for and unforgettable genre scores of the '70s.

Film Score Monthly finally delivers this long-lost Ron Grainer masterpiece in stunning stereo sound, with unused score cues, specially arranged source music and a rejected, alternate end title theme. Filling out the packaging are extensive liner notes, which include comments from star Charlton Heston, producer Walter Seltzer, and famed percussionist Emil Richards, who invented the distinctive water chime effect used in the score.

Ron Grainer Scores on FSM
About the Composer

Ron Grainer (1922-1981) was an Australian composer who did most of his best-known work for British film and TV; he penned the distinctively eerie theme to Doctor Who. His outstandingly tuneful score for the cult film The Omega Man became a cause célèbre for FSM and one of our signature releases. IMDB

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Track List
Instruments/Musicians
Click on each musician name for more credits

Leader (Conductor):
Ron Grainer

Violin:
Israel Baker, Alex L. Beller, David Berman, Henry Arthur Brown, Herman Clebanoff, Samuel Cytron, Baldassare Ferlazzo, Howard W. Griffin, Debbie Sue Grossman, George Kast, Bernard Kundell, Erno Neufeld, Jerome Joseph Reisler, Robert "Bob" Sushel, Gerald Vinci, Harry Zagon

Viola:
Dorothy Colton-Pratt, Rollice Dale, Joseph DiFiore, Cecil Figelski, Allan Harshman, Maurice Keltz, Myra Kestenbaum, Yukiko Kurakata (Kamei), Virginia Majewski, Robert Ostrowsky, Joseph Reilich, Milton Thomas

Cello:
Joseph DiTullio, Justin DiTullio, Jesse Ehrlich, Marie Fera, Irving Lipschultz, Edgar Lustgarten, Kurt Reher, Emmet Sargeant, Joseph Saxon, John Ryan Selberg, Frederick R. Seykora, Gloria Strassner

Bass:
George "Red" Callender, Milton Kestenbaum, Abraham Luboff, Peter A. Mercurio

Flute:
Louise M. DiTullio (Dissman), Arthur Gleghorn, Harry Klee, Leonard V. Posella

Bass Clarinet:
Dominick Fera

Saxophone:
Plas Johnson

French Horn:
Vincent N. DeRosa, William A. Hinshaw, George W. Hyde, Alan I. Robinson

Trombone:
Milton Bernhart, Hoyt Bohannon, Karl Dekarske, Francis L. "Joe" Howard, Barrett O'Hara, George M. Roberts, Thomas Shepard, Terry C. Woodson

Piano:
Paul T. Smith, Raymond Turner

Organ:
Douglas Clare Fischer, Clark Spangler

Guitar:
Robert F. Bain

Fender (electric) Bass:
William Pitman

Harp:
Denzil (Gail) Laughton

Drums:
John P. Guerin

Percussion:
Milton Holland, Louis Singer, Kenneth E. Watson

Vibes:
Victor Feldman

Orchestra Manager:
Kurt E. Wolff

Copyist:
Dan Franklin, Joel Franklin (Guzy), Arthur W. Grier, Alvin Sanders, Bill Williams (aka George Davenport)

© 2014 Film Score Monthly. All Rights Reserved.