Once Upon a Time in America (Extended Version)

USA, Italy  ·  1984  ·  DCP 4K  ·  Color  ·  251'  ·  o.v. English

“«Once Upon a Time in America, my masterpiece? I accept the possibility […]. That score is clearly a composition that stands on its own; you can listen to it separately from the movie. In that sense, it resembles an opera, to a degree». So says Ennio Morricone himself (I met him at his house in Rome for a conversation that was published in Les Inrockuptibles). At the height of his symphonic art, Morricone wrote the most melancholy original score in the history of cinema, a sublime piece of lyricism and restrained emotions, and he gave Leone’s dream about lost time (Once Upon a Time in America), impossible love (Deborah’s Theme) and betrayal a musical mood made up of a handful of magnificent themes, all composed twelve years before the start of filming! The brilliant idea of using a pan flute (Cockeye’s Song) within an intimate tale of Jewish New York gangsters, to underscore Noodles’ opium-induced recollections, is the result of Morricone’s research on musical anachronisms and crosspollinations, which go perfectly hand in hand with the bold and stunning editing choices of a masterpiece of contemporary cinema”. (Olivier Père,, December 9, 2010)




Sergio Leone


Robert De Niro, James Woods, Elisabeth McGovern, Joe Pesci, Treat Williams, Tuesday Weld


Arnon Milchan


Tonino Delli Colli


Nino Baragli


Ennio Morricone

Related biographie(s)