Z: The Beginning of Everything
The single-series period drama Z: The Beginning of Everything was an enjoyable watch; based on the novel of the same name, a fictionalised account of the lives of F. Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald and the dawning of the jazz age, it featured a strong effort from Christina Ricci as Zelda and an annoying/accurate portrayal of F. Scott by David Hoflin.
One of the stars of the series was Marcelo Zarvos’ sympathetic, gorgeous score. As with the best of Zarvos’ work (the Brazilian pianist/composer has been very active in mainstream film scoring since 2000, averaging two films a year) it is able to stand alone, away from the images it was created for. This is no mean feat, it’s so often thought or said about film and TV scores but it’s almost never the case, maybe more so of a feat with TV scores where the cues are shorter, cut to suit shorter, sharper scenes.
Zarvos’ opening piece, Let’s Never Be Rich, plays out like an instrumental Sufjan Stevens piece, you can almost imagine a breathy voice entering. Much as I can tolerate and often enjoy Stevens I’m always pleasantly surprise he isn’t anywhere here and it’s Marcelo Zarvos’ delightful piano line that leads the way.
Typically these are 60-90 second cues, some (Best of All) stretching to two minutes tops. It’s the piano to the fore with soft, sympathetic strings sitting in behind.
The guitar-driven Crossing The Bridge arrives at just the right time to break things up ever so slightly, as does Marion Harris singing the weepy old standard, After You’ve Gone.
A lovely bit of brand-new nostalgia.