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 Posted:   Oct 20, 2008 - 10:18 AM   
 By:   Stefancos   (Member)

Pretty good music, but the tone is incorrect for the film it was composed for.

 
 Posted:   Oct 20, 2008 - 10:29 AM   
 By:   spielboy   (Member)

it's very interesting the comparison of both scores here.

the two are quite over-the-top and "patriotic", but Goldsmith's approach seems more confortable to the story and narrative (always from the point of view of the "good guys") than Newman's almost humouresque music (maybe due to excessive emphasy on russian vs yanquis musicality).

 
 
 Posted:   Oct 20, 2008 - 10:32 AM   
 By:   Thor   (Member)



Hey Mutant. Just cut to the chase and put up the hijacking sequence next.


Ask and you shall receive...

Here is "The Hijacking"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SGh58z4r688


Hmm...interesting. Sounds like pretty standard suspense/action music to me, and really not very different from what Goldsmith did (albeit less theme-driven, perhaps). Very percussive. While Mutant did a good job, we have to remember that the mix is off. It comes to the fore much more than it would otherwise have done.

I certainly CANNOT see how this could be considered inappropriate or at odds with the tone of the movie, knowing what the movie is about and knowing what music finally ended up onscreen.

 
 Posted:   Oct 20, 2008 - 11:01 AM   
 By:   Trent B.   (Member)

Wow, that was really terrible. The film makers made the right decision.

Neil


Agreed.

 
 
 Posted:   Oct 20, 2008 - 11:02 AM   
 By:   Brad Wills   (Member)

Wow, that was really terrible. The film makers made the right decision.

Neil


Yeah, it totally blows. For me the biggest problem is lack of narrative drive. While I appreciate what I believe Newman was going for me, there's just too much movement for the music to any cohesive sense, and the scene just plays out like a jumble. Seriously, did the piccolo players get hazard pay for those endless swirls and runs? Any sprained tongues in the brass section? :-D Whatever it's faults are, it definitely required world-class musicians to tackle it and I'll bet the orchestra had a ball.

 
 
 Posted:   Oct 20, 2008 - 11:24 AM   
 By:   c8   (Member)

I think this is a case of excellent music on its own, but like Troy, completely inappropriate for the film in which it was written. Too over the top and sugary. Its absolutely fun to hear Randy Newman writing like this, though--didn't know he had it in him!

I'm surprised no one caught the blatant, yet ironic, lift from The Blue Max starting at 2:24 in the Hijacking clip ;-)

 
 
 Posted:   Oct 20, 2008 - 11:26 AM   
 By:   Michael24   (Member)

While I appreciate what I believe Newman was going for me, there's just too much movement for the music to any cohesive sense, and the scene just plays out like a jumble.

A friend of mine once heard the rejected score and said he preferred Goldsmith's because Newman's was just "way too busy." I thought that was a pretty accurate description. I don't mind much of it on its own, but against the film, I agree, the filmmakers made the right decision in bringing Goldsmith onto the film.

 
 Posted:   Oct 20, 2008 - 11:58 AM   
 By:   spielboy   (Member)

the real mystery here is why did they hire mr newman to do this film. Honestly. What were they expecting??

 
 
 Posted:   Oct 20, 2008 - 12:11 PM   
 By:   Thor   (Member)

You guys are crazy. Goldsmith's score isn't busy? Over-the-top? Sugary? In fact, that's ALL that it is. I see NO DIFFERENCE whatsoever between the two approaches to the film, at least not if judging by the two clips Mutant has provided so far. All I see is a difference in MUSICAL STYLE, because the two composers have different styles (duh!). Also, Goldsmith's score may or may not be more theme-driven (hard to say before I've heard more of Newman's effort).

 
 
 Posted:   Oct 20, 2008 - 12:15 PM   
 By:   Michael24   (Member)

Goldsmith's score is certainly theme-driven, of course. (And a more memorable them than Newman's, I'd say.) But to describe it the only way I really know how, to my ears I find his score sounds more focused, whereas Newman's sounds less focused. Since this may be the first true action film Newman had ever scored (I'm assuming), it sounds like he had said to himself, "Okay, this is an action movie, so the music must just be loud and crazy."

I don't find either one particularly over-the-top or "sugary," but rather just two different approaches in which one (Goldsmith's) was more appropriate than the other (Newman's).

 
 Posted:   Oct 20, 2008 - 12:16 PM   
 By:   Stefancos   (Member)

No Thor is wrong.

Newman's, while well written music, does not sit right with the tone of the film.

Airforce One, like almost all big-budget action films, is totally absurd and ridiculous. Newman probably thought it was, and his music reflects that.

Goldsmith's score takes this ridiculous film, deadly seriously, whatever feelings the composer might have had about this film...

 
 Posted:   Oct 20, 2008 - 12:55 PM   
 By:   SchiffyM   (Member)

Well, I think you're all wrong.

I don't share the love that a lot of people here have for Goldsmith's score (I think it's fine, mind you, but I don't listen to it often). But where Newman scores the moments, his music lacks a point of view. Goldsmith's anthem-like theme gives the film an overall shape, which is more important for this film than merely hitting each moment. I don't think one is more patriotic, or over the top, or frenetic (well, Newman's may be a little more frenetic, but not by much). Goldsmith simply helps organize the action and build the tension by hinting at, sometimes withholding, and then letting loose with his heroic theme.

I give Peterson credit for taking a shot with Newman (though I have no idea what the actual working relationship was), and I was surprised that Newman's score lacked so many of the strengths his other scores have (strong melodies well presented). Maybe he was micromanaged, or maybe he simply felt out of his element. Or maybe he just blew it. Oh well. I'd still like to see him get another shot at a movie like this. Fat chance, but it would be interesting.

 
 
 Posted:   Oct 20, 2008 - 1:21 PM   
 By:   Thor   (Member)

No Thor is wrong.

Newman's, while well written music, does not sit right with the tone of the film.

Airforce One, like almost all big-budget action films, is totally absurd and ridiculous. Newman probably thought it was, and his music reflects that.

Goldsmith's score takes this ridiculous film, deadly seriously, whatever feelings the composer might have had about this film...


I really disagree with that. Petersen's film is an incredibly over-the-top, ├╝ber-patriotic affair to begin with, but Goldsmith's music even adds MORE fuel to that approach, so that it becomes total OVER-KILL. It's really, really campy and - of course - it turns the film into a turkey of dimensions. HOWEVER, it's a very ENTERTAINING TURKEY if you take it for what it is. It is not often that you see all elements of a film pull so strongly in one direction.

What I've heard of Newman's score so far makes it less interesting as music (since there are few themes to latch onto), and indeed more frenetic, but it DOES take a more reasonable approach to the film than Goldsmith, i.e. easier on the patriotism and heavier on the frenetic action and percussion. It makes the film more of a standard action flick, perhaps. But Goldsmith's score makes it the over-the-top turkey classic that it is, so perhaps we should be grateful for that. smile

 
 Posted:   Oct 20, 2008 - 1:49 PM   
 By:   LeHah   (Member)

I've never heard Newman's material before seeing this YouTube clip. I'm very impressed by it - but the earlier statement that its "too busy" is pretty on the mark. It would work like gangbusters on album but in the context of the film, it is WAY too much.

 
 
 Posted:   Oct 20, 2008 - 2:05 PM   
 By:   Rnelson   (Member)

I have all kind of respect for Randy Newman but as evidence by these clips he was totally out of his element here.

And I'm surprised you guys are even wasting time debating how serious this movie is supposed to be. Air Force one is no more serious (or to even be taken seriously) than Die Hard, Executive Decision or Air Port. Come on. That's not even a point of contention.

It's not about how busy Newman's score is (which it certainly is) or how patriotic Goldsmith's seems. It's about fitting the fabric and tone of the sequences and the term Mickey-Mousing does accurately describe the music here, particularly in the hijacking scenes. Goldsmith scored the TEMPO of the sequence, giving a sense of forward motion by means of theme and rhythm while Newman hit's every turn and cut with a blaze of brass and fanfare. He's scoring the obvious, adding an opaque layer directly on top of every visually apparent point. One never gets a sense of the urgency of the situation because Newman is scoring the physical aspects of the movie while Goldsmith (as much as he was allowed) seemed to be scoring the action AS WELL AS the desperation of those in the scene.

Notice the moment when the American fighter jets arrive. Newman scores it as if the cavalry has just come to the rescue. There's no reason for anyone to feel that way. Goldsmith, on the other hand, gives the same moment a tough "on mission" quality which highlights the progression of the action.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Ms4hzslS74

Newman's music doesn't work because it takes you out of the picture at every turn. Goldsmith's, as overtly patriotic as it is at times, seems more transparent, while being at the same time, noticeably coherent.

 
 Posted:   Oct 20, 2008 - 2:08 PM   
 By:   LeHah   (Member)

And I'm surprised you guys are even wasting time debating how serious this movie is supposed to be. Air Force one is no more serious (or to even be taken seriously) than Die Hard, Executive Decision or Air Port. Come on. That's not even a point of contention.

Well, there is a subtle but important difference here.

Air Force One takes its self seriously as an action film, but not as some kind of great work of art.

On the other hand, Ghosts Can't Do It takes its self seriously as sexual romantic comedy but is not that at all.

 
 
 Posted:   Oct 20, 2008 - 2:17 PM   
 By:   Rnelson   (Member)


Air Force One takes its self seriously as an action film, but not as some kind of great work of art.


I hope I'm agreeing with you. Of course it takes itself seriously as an action film. In its make believe world people really do get shot and planes do crash and the people in them really do blow-up. Everyone in the movie believes that real lives are at stake. But that's what's supposed to happen, isn't it? The point is to convince the audience for those 2-odd hours that the crisis is believable the same way as a roller coaster fools you into thinking that you're really in danger. Nobody is trying to learn real history from this.

 
 Posted:   Oct 20, 2008 - 2:18 PM   
 By:   LeHah   (Member)

Nobody is trying to learn history from this.

Oh dear god, I hope not!

 
 
 Posted:   Oct 20, 2008 - 2:37 PM   
 By:   Thor   (Member)

Newman's music doesn't work because it takes you out of the picture at every turn. Goldsmith's, as overtly patriotic as it is at times, seems more transparent, while being at the same time, noticeably coherent.

I think one of the reasons you may feel that way, is because the music is mixed WAY too loud in Mutant's clips; you can hardly hear the sound effects, if at all. If properly mixed, I'm sure it would sound far more "organic" and very much like Goldsmith's own action music for this - at least in terms of approach.

 
 
 Posted:   Oct 20, 2008 - 2:39 PM   
 By:   Rnelson   (Member)

Newman's music doesn't work because it takes you out of the picture at every turn. Goldsmith's, as overtly patriotic as it is at times, seems more transparent, while being at the same time, noticeably coherent.

I think one of the reasons you may feel that way, is because the music is mixed WAY too loud in Mutant's clips; you can hardly hear the sound effects, if at all. If properly mixed, I'm sure it would sound far more "organic" and very much like Goldsmith's own action music for this - at least in terms of approach.


That would help, no doubt, but it wouldn't fix the fundamental problem. Mickey Mousery.

Furthermore, I don't get a sense of real danger from Newman's music. Only frenzied, kinetic action. There's an element of peril that is missing from Goldsmith's version of the hijacking.

 
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