Andy, unless I missed a paragraph, I can't believe a review of THE PARALLAX VIEW (especially at THIS site) doesn't merit ONE MENTION of Michael Small's superb score. You even singled out the Parallax Test sequence but still didn't tip a hat to Small's magnificent contribution to that sequence. What gives mate!!??
And lest we forget, FSM released the soundtrack to Michael Small's "Parallax View" with his "Marathon Man" back in 2010.
I just watched Parallax and really enjoyed Small's score, and the moments in the film that were scoreless that perhaps another director/composer combo would've flung percussive flourishes all over the film.
One observation. The actor Walter McGinn who played the Parallax recruiter Jack Younger, also appeared in "Three Days of the Condor" as Condor's old buddy who gets gunned down in the alley. (I just saw that film 2 weeks ago, so memory is fresh.) And the main bad guy in Parallax, Bill McKinney, also appeared as the main hillbilly in "Deliverance" (not a conspiracy film, I know.) Nice to see these 1970s faces. And I kinda enjoyed those totally out of place bar fights and car chases that seemed to have escaped from an early 70s Burt Reynolds film.
But what gets me the most is the ending. Michael Smalls music really gets to the sadness and futility of the main character.
I love the slow pulse, heartbeat quality of the score, with the twisted patriotism layered on top. A trait Small repeated in MARATHON MAN & THE STAR CHAMBER. Even the marching band playing the main theme - in a faraway fashion - during the end credits sounds fckd up. Guess what I'm gonna be playing today