Saving Private Ryan (1998)
There are large sections of Saving Private Ryan that don’t feature any music at all, and that was thanks to John Williams who thought that some sections of Steven Spielberg’s World War II epic should let what’s happening on the screen tell the story. Despite this, Williams wrote one of his best scores for 1998 war film, including the main theme, “Hymn To The Fallen.”
With shades of Aaron Copland’s “Fanfare for the Common Man,” the main theme of Saving Private Ryan is nuanced, emotional, and epic all at the same time, which is a feat few others could accomplish. Throughout the rest of the movie (whenever there’s music), John Williams brings his trademark combination of string arrangements and horn sections to add to the tone of the film.