- Music / Sound
- Dialogue / Narrative / Story
Swamp Blues Mysticism
In the Electric Mist sees Tommy Lee Jones in great form, stoically marching like a haggard cadaver in an intoxicating and strange pursuit of truth where gritty, seedy, stark southern realism – greed, alcoholism and sexual depravity – collide with the sinister ghosts of Gettysburg and an unnerving swamp blues mysticism through the often complex and twisted investigation into a series of gruesome murders.
Jones plays a detective in post Katrina New Orleans investigating the grisly murders of local prostitutes, a 1965 race killing, and corrupt local businessmen – he also encounters a group of Confederate soldiers through the surreal and mystical collapse of time after a car crash induced through a malicious dose of L.S.D. in a spiked drink. Based upon the best selling novel from award winner James Lee Burke this film is a psychological thriller through and through but the music & soundtrack, cast performance and unusual synopsis bring an unexpected dimension and twist to the film.
Soundtrack Heavy Southern Melancholy
Marco Beltrami delivers a beautiful soundtrack; emotional, haunting and sinister -an eerie and richly evocative vision of heavy Southern melancholia, aching with plangent, somnambulant, southern strings, finely chosen percussion reminiscent of Sergio Leone’s epic Western work together with brilliant instrumentation. Beltrami’s palette subtly mixes the Louisiana flavours of Country, Creole, Swamp, Zydeco and Blues with a sound that’s as rich as it is dreamy, edgy and creepy. Occasionally discordant glimpses of apocalyptic (Penderecki-esque) terror, freak-show jazz maintain a high wire tension and keep you on the edge of your seat. Beltrami’s mixing of his more usual style from his work in horror really benefits from the more subtle and hypnotic blend of Louisiana sounds.
Levon Helm, Buddy Guy, John Goodman
John Goodman is also on the boil, capturing with tasteless aplomb the tacky and vile character of a greedmonger with support from ‘old southern dog’ Levon Helm and an appearance from blues guitar legend Buddy Guy (not included on the soundtrack).
If you would enjoy a heady and unnerving mix of American folk lore, gumshoe detective thriller and the failure of the human condition delivered through the visual and spoken vernacular of the deep south then this one’s for you – a hurricane in slow motion.