THE EXCEPTION, is a riveting World War II thriller that is filled with espionage and romance in equal measure, the story focuses upon a German Soldier Stefan Brandt portrayed by Jai Courtney as he embarks on a mission to investigate exiled German Monarch Kaiser Wilhelm II played wonderfully by the talented actor Christopher Plummer. The Kaiser has taken up residence in a secluded mansion in The Netherlands, and as Hitler’s Nazis are taking over Holland, the country’s authorities are concerned that Dutch spies may be watching the Kaiser. As Brandt begins to infiltrate the Kaiser’s life in search of clues, he finds that he is slowly but surely being drawn into an unexpected and passionate romance with Mieke (Lily James), one of the Kaiser’s maids whom Brandt soon discovers is secretly Jewish. When Heinrich Himmler (Eddie Marsan), Head of the SS, decides to come for an unexpected visit with a large platoon of Nazis in tow, the stage is set for a breath-taking showdown, as secrets are revealed, allegiances are tested, and Brandt is forced to make the ultimate choice between honouring his country and following his heart. It is a gripping and absorbing movie and one that will keep audiences interested and entertained throughout, the musical score is by composer Ilan Eshkeri, who is in my opinion one of the leading lights in film music composition, his score for STARDUST still amazes and enthrals all who listen to it for the first time and holds the attention of collectors who have had it within their collection since its release.
Eshkeri’s score for THE EXCEPTION contains some of the most beautiful and attractive themes that I have heard in a while, many of which are performed by piano, the instrument lending much to the poignancy and emotiveness of the music. The delicate and fragile sounding themes which are quite simple in their make-up seem to be even more haunting when both piano and cello combine to create a touching yet solemn style and sound that certainly hits the emotional spot wonderfully. The score also contains a harder and more martial sound in places which is in-keeping with the films storyline, it also has a mysterious and somewhat exhilarating air to it, with the composer developing an atmosphere that is uneasy and urgent via strings and underlining timpani, the percussive elements acting as punctuation to the string sections and being further enhanced by the utilization of piano, which although fleeting is effective and adds a sense of intrigue to the proceedings. Overall, I would say that this is a somewhat low-key score, with the composer employing just strings. piano and the timpani sections of the orchestra, the lilting and haunting themes are beautifully written and contain a richness and warmth but at the same time seem to ooze a melancholy and fragility which becomes attractive to the listener almost instantly. I am confident that this will become a firm favourite of collectors old and new. Please check it out. Recommended.