The Wolverine: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack
Film score by
ReleasedJuly 23, 2013 (2013-07-23)
StudioNewman Scoring Stage, 20th Century Fox Studios, Los Angeles
GenreFilm score
LabelSony Classical
X-Men soundtrack chronology
X-Men: First Class
The Wolverine
X-Men: Days of Future Past
Marco Beltrami chronology
World War Z
The Wolverine

The Wolverine (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack) is the soundtrack album to the 2013 superhero film of the same name, directed by James Mangold. Featuring the Marvel Comics character Wolverine, the film is the sixth installment in the X-Men film series, the second installment in the trilogy of Wolverine films after X-Men Origins: Wolverine (2009), and a spin-off/sequel to X-Men: The Last Stand (2006). The film's musical score is composed by Marco Beltrami, who previously scored Mangold's 3:10 to Yuma (2007).

The score was performed by an 85-piece ensemble of the Hollywood Studio Symphony at the Newman Scoring Stage located in 20th Century Fox Studios.[1] It consisted of mostly Japanese instruments, which were used in a Spaghetti Western music rather than traditional Japanese score, leading Beltrami to experiment with the instruments. The album was released by Sony Classical Records on July 23, 2013 and received positive reviews from critics.


" was a very un-traditional superhero movie in a respect. It had film noir aspects to it, a mystery going on, and Logan’s character is sort of a dark isolationist character. That ultimately led to my choice for the harmonica being his instrument. It has a very lonely sound to it. I was a little worried at first, but what I was doing fit the picture or at least what I was experimenting with. The fact that it was a superhero movie and I had harmonica for his character, I was wondering how well that would fly. Jim was very supportive of it. I think the way it develops in the film…hopefully it works."

— Marco Beltrami, on the film's musical approach[2]

In September 2012, Marco Beltrami, announced that he had signed on to score for The Wolverine.[3] Beltrami added that "the character Wolverine is a bit of a loner. There is a sound and melodic structure and harmonic structure that is used for him, but it’s not like a Superman type of theme; it’s much more reserved."[4] Following Mangold's noir and Spaghetti Western inspirations for the film, Beltrami explained, "I think I do every movie as a western whether it is or not, so there's definitely some of the spaghetti western influence on my music throughout the score, and I guess throughout a lot of my work. I wouldn't say there was a particular movie that influenced me more than something else. There was nothing that I was trying to mimic or anything."[2]

Despite the film's setting in Japan, Beltrami decided not to use an "authentic Japanese score", but had used Japanese instruments for licensing and not to score in a traditional way. Wolverine's theme basically consisted of harmonica, as the primary sound for the character, was the "most non-orchestral musical element of the score".[2] The koto (a Japanese string instrument) was used as a percussive instrument, instead of strings, to follow the non-traditional approach. He further used Japanese percussions, taiko drums and flutes in the score.[2] On using the Japanese flutes, Beltrami approached a "western-like treatment" which was not really "based on any pentatonic scales". He added "There’s echo tunnel drumming that takes place in there, but often times it’s processed, and different effects are put on it; so it’s nothing really traditionally Japanese as part of the score."[4]

Track listing

All music is composed by Marco Beltrami

1."A Walk in the Woods"1:02
2."Threnody for Nagasaki"1:15
4."Logan's Run"3:56
5."The Offer Time"3:15
6."Arriving at the Temple"2:10
7."Funeral Fight"4:22
8."Two Handed"4:04
9."Bullet Train"1:31
10."The Snare"1:32
13."Ninja Quiet"3:40
14."Kantana Surgery"3:50
15."The Wolverine"2:21
16."The Hidden Fortress"5:02
17."Silver Samurai"3:27
18."Sword of Vengeance"4:32
20."Goodbye Mariko"1:01
21."Where To?"2:25
22."Whole Step Haiku"2:08

Critical reception

Professional ratings
Review scores
AVForums(highly recommended)

James Manheim of Allmusic wrote "Beltrami draws on the latter vocabulary in this moody score, which favors dark psychological tension over kinetic action scenes and often pushes the dissonance content of cinematic orchestral music close to its limits. Beltrami cleverly runs counter to expectations in another way as well, acknowledging the film's samurai themes with some Japanese flute passages and taiko drum sounds, but keeping them largely in the background. The music is mostly devoted to the states of mind of the mutant Wolverine. With the filmmakers backing an ambitious score for large orchestra by a composer who appears to be hitting his creative peak, this is a worthwhile pick for film music fans in general, as well as those brought to it by the brooding Wolverine himself."[5] Chris McNeany of AV Forums called it as "a fine amalgamation of moody ethnic-laced suspense, pulse-pounding excitement and an ambient sense of melancholic romance and mystery that is suitably strung with quivering apprehension".[6] gave a mixed review saying "Beltrami fails to really adopt any kind of superior narrative approach, forcing ambient brutality upon us rather than continued growth for the character. Be prepared for a depressingly futile battle of cultural stereotypes if you choose to explore Beltrami's take."[7] Mfiles wrote " The Wolverine is nevertheless a contemporary superhero score done with considerably more flair and thought than most."[8]

Soundtrack Geek gave a positive review, stating "The Wolverine is a fantastic score in parts, but because of the slow beginning, the score is not excellent as a whole. It’s pretty damn good though and Beltrami’s best of the year so far."[9] James Southall of Movie Wave wrote "Beltrami establishes an incredibly dark tone – huge parts of the score consist of oppressive percussion (including mighty Japanese drums, reflective of the film’s setting) with brass stings and murky string runs around them.  Some of it’s actually quite sophisticated, particularly the more elaborate percussion; it’s just not the sort of thing I would ever actually want to listen to. A couple of the action cues are more vintage Beltrami and these are fantastic but far too much of the album consists of monotone brooding drone for it to work for me as a piece of entertainment."[10] Peter Debruge of Variety called it as "sensational cross-cultural score",[11] while Screen Rant-based critic Sandy Schaefer wrote that parts of the music recall Ennio Morricone's music for The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (1966), "which helps to hammer that idea home and strengthen the film's East-meets-West subtext in the process."[12]


Chart (2013) Peak
UK Soundtrack Albums (OCC)[13] 23


Credits adapted from CD liner notes[14][15]



  1. ^ Goldwasser, Dan (November 12, 2013). "Marco Beltrami scores The Wolverine". Retrieved November 22, 2013.
  2. ^ a b c d Farrell, Cody (July 25, 2013). "Exclusive: Composer Marco Beltrami Talks The Wolverine, Snowpiercer, Carrie And More". Comic Book Therapy. Archived from the original on July 27, 2013. Retrieved July 27, 2013.
  3. ^ "Marco Beltrami to Score 'The Wolverine'". Film Music Reporter. September 18, 2012. Retrieved September 18, 2012.
  4. ^ a b Lee Dejasu, Barry (July 3, 2013). "Scoring Horror: Interview with MARCO BELTRAMI (Part 2 of 2)". CinemaKnifeFight. Archived from the original on July 27, 2013. Retrieved July 27, 2013.
  5. ^ Marco Beltrami - The Wolverine [Original Motion Picture Soundtrack] Album Reviews, Songs & More | AllMusic, retrieved August 17, 2022
  6. ^ "The Wolverine OST Soundtrack Review". AVForums. August 2013. Retrieved August 17, 2022.
  7. ^ "Filmtracks: The Wolverine (Marco Beltrami)". Retrieved August 17, 2022.
  8. ^ "Marco Beltrami: The Wolverine - original film score soundtrack review". Retrieved August 17, 2022.
  9. ^ "Soundtrack Review: The Wolverine (2013)". Soundtrack Geek. Archived from the original on February 6, 2018. Retrieved August 17, 2022.
  10. ^ "The Wolverine soundtrack review | Marco Beltrami |". January 15, 2014. Retrieved August 17, 2022.
  11. ^ Debruge, Peter (July 23, 2013). "Film Review: 'The Wolverine'". Variety. Retrieved August 17, 2022.
  12. ^ Schaefer, Sandy (July 26, 2013). "'The Wolverine' Review". ScreenRant. Retrieved August 17, 2022.
  13. ^ "Official Soundtrack Albums Chart 27 July 2013 - 2 August 2013". Official Charts Company. August 3, 2013. Retrieved November 25, 2023.
  14. ^ "The Wolverine [Original Motion Picture Soundtrack] by Marco Beltrami (CD, Jul-20 888837298025". eBay. Retrieved August 17, 2022.
  15. ^ Marco Beltrami - Wolverine [Soundtrack Import] | The Record Room, retrieved August 17, 2022