Soundtrack Review: DUE DATE

Allison Loring

by: Allison Loring
November 4th, 2010

Rating: 2.5/5

Director Todd Phillips (THE HANGOVER) brings us another story of a trip gone terribly awry and the soundtrack sets the tone of a crazed journey that has a habit of throwing those on the trip (and us in the audience) for a loop (who was also surprised to see MIMS on the lineup?) at every other turn. Just as our two mismatched travel companions come together, the seemingly random selection of artists featured on the soundtrack (Band of Horses, Cream, Rod Stewart) end up making “sense” as they only could in a Phillips film.

The soundtrack starts things off with some classic R&B from Sam & Dave with “Hold On I’m Comin,’” which is the perfect beginning to a tale about a man, Peter Highman (Robert Downey Jr.), trying to get home to his wife with a quickly approaching DUE DATE. I assumed the majority of the soundtrack would be loud rock to keep up with all the insanity happening on screen, but the soundtrack also included some country tracks (Billy Currington, “People Are Crazy” and Cowboy Junkies, “Sweet Jane”) and rap from MIMS (“That’s Why I’m Hot”) and Ice Cube (“Check Ya Self 2010”). But we do step on the gas, as expected, with Wolfmother’s “New Moon Rising” and Cream’s “White Room.”

One of my favorite tracks on the soundtrack came from Band of Horses with “Is There A Ghost” playing that line between driving rock and haunting melodies. It seemed to find a good middle ground between the accelerated tracks and the more mellow ones.

Rod Stewart’s version of “Amazing Grace” ended up being a sweet and touching break from the madness, as Ethan Tremblay (Zach Galifianakis) ends one journey to embark on another. It is an easy song choice for such a moment, but I thought Stewart’s rendition worked well in the scene.

The last three tracks are by composer Christophe Beck (THE HANGOVER, PERCY JACKSON & THE OLYMPIANS: THE LIGHTNING THIEF) with three pieces from his score (“Glaucoma," “A Good Sign,” and “Ethan’s Theme”), which provide us a touch of emotional backbone to balance out the otherwise overall haphazard tone of the film. However, Beck does not just cue up the orchestra in the spaces between Wolfmother and Ice Cube. Beck keeps up to pace on “Glaucoma” and “Ethan’s Theme” and then slows things down a bit on “A Good Sign.” Out of this selection, the faster-paced style seems to apply to those pieces relating to Ethan, whereas the more mellow pieces seem to relate to Peter. Both characters have their high-strung and slightly manic moments, but they have honest and effecting ones as well, as one man deals with life and the other with death, proving that the emotions on each end of this spectrum are not very far from one another.

Although there was a song or two I particularly enjoyed, the soundtrack itself is a bit random and though the songs work within the context of the film, on their own, they sound like an iTunes playlist on shuffle.

This soundtrack is available through Watertower Music.

1. “Hold On I’m Comin’” – Sam & Dave
2. “New Moon Rising” – Wolfmother
3. “Is There A Ghost” – Band of Horses
4. “People Are Crazy” – Billy Currington
5. “White Room” – Cream
6. “That’s Why I’m Hot” – MIMS
7. “Sweet Jane” – Cowboy Junkies
8. “Amazing Grace” – Rod Stewart
9. “Check Ya Self 2010” – Ice Cube
10. “Glaucoma” – Christophe Beck
11. “A Good Sign” – Christophe Beck
12. “Ethan’s Theme” – Christophe Beck

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