Deservedly winning this year's oscar for Best Original Score, Jan A.P. Kaczmarek's music for Finding Neverland is a rare delight. It is playful and infectious while never hard on the ear. Though it has been carefully crafted to fit the mood of the film, its innocent yet lively quality matches the boyish spontaneity exhibited by Johnny Depp as J. M. Barry in the movie. Although there is a serious story to the film, the music remains true to its ideals in searching for and believing in the fun aspects of life, in "finding neverland". There are occasions when the film requires source music, though this often blends imperceptibly with the background music in the same way as the film seems at times to blend fantasy with reality. Until this film we were not familiar with the work of this Polish composer, but this particular soundtrack seems to suggest the music of Rachel Portman with touches of Danny Elfman.
On the whole, the music is carried by small groupings from traditional orchestral forces, though at fanciful moments this is augmented by a boys choir or European instruments such as the accordian or mandolin. The end titles of the film feature piano music based on material from elsewhere in the film. The piano is played here by Leszek Mozdzer and a feature of the album is the inclusion of further tracks by the same pianist based on the themes from the film's soundtrack. These give an added dimension to the CD, and the improvisatory nature of these tracks and the retention of 1 or 2 fluffed notes in the recordings only underline the movie's ideals of "capturing the moment" and celebrating the sponaneity of children's imaginative play.
The full track listing is as follows: