Sunday night, in celebration of Labor Day, The Lonely Note crew and a couple friends got together to watch my favorite movie of all time - Bloodsport. This epic 1988 martial arts film not only showcases Jean Claude Van Damme at his best, but it is also a benchmark in musical scores. Van Damme's half-hour long flashback, serving to retell of his background training, could easily be one of the longest flashbacks in film history; however, it would seem like an eternity without the right musical accompaniment to move it along.
Luckily for us, composer Paul Hertzog was up to the task, and singer Stan Bush was able to perform two vital tracks, 'Fight to Survive' and 'On My Own - Alone.' The lyrics are appropriately mediocre, but when sung in an overly-dramatic way, over an overly-dramatic score, the results are, to say the least....overly-awesome. The movie's numerous fight sequences and Van Damme's recurring flashback problem would not be nearly as effective without this musical sidearm. The two aforementioned songs have an 80s rock ballad feel to them; which if you couldn't tell already from the names, 'Fight to Survive' is the pump-up track, and 'On My Own - Alone' is the glass-half-empty counterpart. The rest of the soundtrack is filled with variations of an Asian-inspired arrangement, which switch things up at key points of the plotline. For some reason, the song playing during the great chase scene, credited as Michael Bishop's 'Steal the Night', does not appear on the soundtrack.
Having grown up on this movie, I had looked to buy the soundtrack for years, but could never seem to find it in stores. After having given up almost all hope, I stumbled upon an unopened copy of it in an otherwise expensive music store for the ridiculously low price of $1. There was no debate as to whether I would soon own this soundtrack. Still quite the rarity and collector's item, I saw the cd listed at up to $80 on ebay this evening, with Amazon selling it for $50. Despite the absence of 'Steal the Night' from the soundtrack, I still hold firm that this was one of the best musical finds of my life. Great to wake up to in the morning, listen to before a big game/test/meeting, or just simply drive to, the uplifting Bloodsport soundtrack is surely one for the ages.