The Contender

Feature Film

The Contender was the first big film for both myself and director Rod Lurie. The challenge for me was to represent the core concept of “integrity”, this was Rod’s single word of direction for me. I needed to find in a musical way how to represent this and add determination and focus to the pictures bedrock principle. I was daunted at first, but came to realize this was an excellent singular beacon to guide me.
— Larry Groupe´


A political thriller about Laine Hanson, a Senator who is nominated to become Vice President following the death of the previous office holder. During the confirmation process, Laine is the victim of a vicious attack on her personal life in which stories of sexual deviancy are spread. She is torn as to whether she should fight back, or stick to her high principles and refuse to comment on the allegations. Written by Ted Johnson


Larry Groupé's skills as a composer, his ability to grab a movie by its balls and turn it into an artistic endeavor beyond anything one could previously have conceived of, is uncontroverted. There are just a few musical cues in The Contender and they therefore stand out—each one its own charismatic gem. What Larry is able to do is not only take a scene and help find its emotional rhythm but also make that one cue part of the film's overall texture. His work is variegated to the degree that one cannot pigeonhole the specifics of his musical skill. His versatility, which I hope is evident in The Contender, is what makes him stand out. I would not say that he has a specific style—for I suspect that in Larry Groupé's mind, style amounts to self-plagiarism. The only thing you can be sure of getting when you hear a Larry Groupé score is that it will be different from anything you have heard before and that it will serve the master that is the film.

— Rod Lurie • Director/Writer