International Title
 Bizan: The Mountain of Mother's Love
Music By: Michiru Oshima
Record Label: Victor Entertainment
Running Time: 32:44 Discs: 1
Release: May 2007 CD Number: VICL-62373
Anthony Romero
First, thanks goes to Jessica Stan for sending this in for review!

Let it be known that I'm a pretty big fan of Michiru Oshima's. Ever since Godzilla Against Mechagodzilla (2002), and her triumphant score for the production, she has shot up to be one of my favorite composers for Toho films. So whenever I get a chance to review some of her work there is a certain level of satisfaction to be gained, as is the case with Bizan: The Mountain of Mother's Love. This is a bit of an interesting score to review, though, because the soundtrack has some great themes.. even if the CD itself isn't all that great.

Frankly speaking, pretty much all of the themes on this disc are enjoyable. They capture a majestic, peaceful quality that is maintained throughout and is benefitted by sweeping orchestration and a lot of violin work. Its wonderful music that delivers an almost enchanting quality. Sadly, the soundtrack suffers very badly from repetition as the main theme motif is used again, and again, and again. "Title", "To Come Home", "Young Memory", "Secret", "Memory by Firefly", "Letter", "Promise", "Mother's Desire", "Reunion", "Mother's Approach", "Mother and Daughter" and "Bizan" all use the same motif. A couple of them sound quite different, such as "Memory by Firefly" which is piano based and "Mother and Daughter" which is a bit more tragic in its tempo, but that still does little to disguise the fact that its the same basic theme that accounts for more than half of the total soundtrack. Granted, its a good theme, a very good theme... but it can't overcome the level of repetition that it's subjected to here.

Overall, this is an enjoyable soundtrack but nothing particularly great. Oshima discovered a tempo and, sadly, never really ventured off, showing remarkably little range for this particular score which is only compounded by the very short runtime. All in all, the music here would probably benefit more being spread across a "best of" compilation for the artist, where the soothing and harmonious melodies would have a little bit more breathing room amongst a more diverse palet of themes.
Rating: Star Rating
  1. Title
  2. To Come Home
  3. Reconciliation
  4. Young Memory
  5. Yumekusa Association
  6. Thinking of Mother
  7. Secret
  8. Memory by Firefly
  9. A Moonlight Night
  10. Letter
  11. Light Swaying on the Water
  12. Promise
  13. Mother's Desire
  14. Father's Words
  15. Mother's Kimono
  16. Loving Daughter
  17. Reunion
  18. Mother's Approach
  19. Mother and Daughter
  20. Bizan