mark adler { press }
HOME BIO CREDITS GALLERY SIGHTS & SOUNDS STUDIO NOTES PRESS LINKS CONTACT

REVIEWS

COMMAND AND CONTROL

"Kenner is masterful in his use of imagery...heightened by the endless rewind, testimonies of those young PTS members who ran back in to save their mates and Mark Adler's ominous score."

Director Robert Kenner constructs a tense, scary tick-tock of a 1980 accident at an Arkansas facility housing a powerful nuclear warhead.... The implications of disturbances like this are downright terrifying, and Kenner captures that intensity via candid interviews, stylish reconstructions, and urgent music, creating a brisk, efficient exploration of a troubling moment in our history, with questions that are very much of this moment.

MERCHANTS OF DOUBT

"Scored with mischievous caper music, it keeps revisiting an ominous (and purely metaphorical) archive filled with damning documents (picture the warehouses at the ends of 'Citizen Kane' or 'Raiders of the Lost Ark').

"Yet having worked together on the impactful "Food, Inc.," [Mark] Adler, and [Robert] Kenner also know there's a serious point here for all of the snarky laughter they provide. And as the hugely entertaining "Merchants" reaches its sad, if still hopeful final point for a situation that's pretty much irreversible, Adler's once-humorous melodies darken to reveal themselves as serving as poignant food for thought. The result shows the power of documentary scoring to have all of the belief-changing impact of dramatized "fiction" film music, with "Merchant's" musical impact showing just how well Adler is versed in both cinematic worlds."

"Solid reporting ties together battles over seemingly unconnected perils like cigarettes and flame-retardant chemicals. Snazzy graphics and music—and appealing interview subjects—move things along, and a kick-in-the-gut plot twist suggests how climate change actually benefited oil companies."

FOOD, INC.

"With a constituency limited to anyone who eats, "Food, Inc." is a civilized horror movie for the socially conscious, the nutritionally curious and the hungry. Yes, it has a deceptively cheery palette, but helmer Robert Kenner's doc—which does for the supermarket what "Jaws" did for the beach—marches straight into the dark side of cutthroat agri-business, corporatized meat and the greedy manipulation of both genetics and the law. Doc biz may be in the doldrums, but "Food, Inc." is so aesthetically polished and politically urgent, theatrical play seems a no-brainer...

That the filmmakers dress up all this information in glossy graphics, splashes of color and Mark Adler's often buoyant (and ironic) score is ingenious, because the artifice of the film's aesthetic is always subtly emphasizing the artificiality of the food."

BOTTLE SHOCK

"Mark Adler effervescently embodies the joy and heartbreak of winemaking, traveling from the classical snootiness of France's vineyards to the funky California rhythms that ultimately win the wine tasting day. It's an inventive vintage throughout that leaves the listener giddy with delight."

"Adler's winning, New-Age sounding score (solo violin, acoustic guitar and piano over strings) for this little indie about the rise of Napa Valley wine country cunningly uses percussion effects that echo the sound of clattering wine bottles."

"Alongside the cinematography also lays the somewhat majestic, but grounded score penned by Mark Adler that manages to convey the same feelings provoked by Ozier's photography, creating a formidable, cohesive whole that really brings home the themes of the feature with poignancy."

NOBEL SON

"...enjoyably titillating black comedy should elate Rickman fans while pleasing aficionados of extra-flakey caper flicks...Tech credits maintain the film's momentum throughout, Paul Oakenfold and Mark Adler's techno-beat rhythms pumping up the action with occasional breaks for irony."

THE FAR SIDE OF JERICHO

"The movie benefits from the handsome widescreen photography by Patrick Cady, and Mark Adler's rousing score evokes classic scores by Dimitri Tiomkin and Elmer Bernstein."

MARILYN HOTCHKISS BALLROOM DANCING AND CHARM SCHOOL

"This is a wonderful example of a disc that combines score and song selections seamlessly...composer Mark Adler [has written] a quietly emotive score..."

"Mark Adler's compositions and score are the real deal. It can get no better. A fine cast, superb music and a plot that thickens from the outset make this CD and film a rare trip into movie magic and a musical joy ride that will be long remembered." (Five Stars)

FOCUS

"The score is a wonderful example of his deft touch, mixing soft elegance with warm piano and—through the use of a bowed psaltery—a trace of exotic inscrutability. Adler's imaginative and memorable melodies perfectly capture the tale's dignified narrative and quiet conflict."

"An excellent theme...[the] score is set apart by its rich harmony, good thematic material, and interesting orchestrational choices. Adler has a distinct musical voice and style...If the film had resonated with audiences, it could have landed [him] an Oscar nomination in a crowded field." (Four Stars)

"Composer Mark Adler's evocative score often teams with the striking images to haunting effect."

"Mark Adler's musical score—at times reminiscent of Aaron Copland; at others, Bernard Herrmann—adds greatly to the ambiance."

PICTURE BRIDE

"'Picture Bride' elicited a strikingly beautiful score from Mark Adler, who succeeded in conveying the hardships, sorrow and unexpected joys in the lives of Japanese laborers... With the bamboo flutes creating haunting images that often transcend the ethnicity in the action, Adler wrote a score that teems with gorgeous melodies, as precious and lovely as a porcelain doll, soothing and striking in their calm beauty...an illuminating joy..." (Four-and-a-half Bones)

"Exceptionally expressive...some of the finest moments come in quiet passages with the theme stated on a nylon string guitar, reminiscent of the poignancy and power of the end titles of The Unforgiven."

"Hatta and her collaborators bring to Riyo's odyssey an epic vision..."Picture Bride" unfolds as a series of ravishingly beautiful, highly sensual images accompanied by Mark Adler's shimmering score."

"The soaring musical score adds an uplifting vibe that's in keeping with director Kayo Hatta's goal to create a lyrical crowdpleaser (not surprisingly, it won the Audience Award at Sundance.)"

EAT A BOWL OF TEA

"Composer Mark Adler's score supports the activity onscreen perfectly, and a pair of classic songs—'How High the Moon,' sung by Pat Suzuki, and [Adler's] sultry 'Spring in New York,' performed by Lynn Ray—are utilized to stunning effect in the soundtrack at important moments."

. . . back to top

HIGHLIGHTS

PREMIERES

"Command and Control"
• April 17, 2016, Tribeca Film Festival, New York City

"Pedro E. Guerrero: A Photographer's Journey"
• September 18, 2015 (American Masters, PBS)

"The Killing Fields of Dr. Haing S. Ngor"
• March 15, 2015, Castro Theatre, San Francisco

"Merchants of Doubt"
• August 30, 2014, Telluride Film Festival

"Free to Play"
• March 18, 2014, Castro Theatre, San Francisco

"Saving Lincoln"
• February 13, 2013 (limited theatrical release)

"A Smile as Big as the Moon"
• January 29, 2012 9 pm ET/PT (Hallmark Hall of Fame, ABC)

RELEASES

"Command and Control"
• September 14, 2016, theatrical release

"Merchants of Doubt"
• March 5, 2015, theatrical release

"Free to Play"
• March 19, 2014, on Steam

"Saving Lincoln"
• March 6, 2013

"A Smile as Big as the Moon"
• January 29, 2012

"The Lost Valentine"
• January 30, 2011

"Food, Inc."
• November 3, 2009

"Bottle Shock"
• February 3, 2009

"Nobel Son"
• March 10, 2009