Book: Sounding Funny
Chapter: Parody, Self-Parody and Genre-Parody: Music in The Magnificent Seven and ¡Three Amigos!
The chapter investigates how composer Elmer Bernstein took elements from his famous score for The Magnificent Seven and reused and reworked them into his score for the Western comedy ¡Three Amigos! Although much of his music is “straight,” Bernstein did compose cues intended to be humorous, in order to highlight the absurdity of the on-screen image. He also reworked a love theme cue from The Magnificent Seven into something entirely different in ¡Three Amigos!, again emphasizing the absurdity of the on-screen image. Composer Randy Newman contributed songs to the film as well. When the Amigos sing and dance, it demonstrates that they are entertainers, not gunfighters, and Bernstein’s score propels them to fulfill their movie roles in real life.