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 Posted:   May 6, 2013 - 7:16 PM   
 By:   TM   (Member)

about time after 10 years of producing garbage and ripping himself off.


Wait, so The Village, Lady in the Water, The Happening, I Am Legend, King Kong, and Water Horse are...garbage??


Lady in the water, the Happening and I am Legend is just some inferior variation of The Village, Dreamcatcher and The Devil's Advocate.

King Kong is a rush job.

Water Horse ... it's so inferior to his earlier, similar works (Dinosaur, Waterworld, Verticle Limit, Atlantis, etc.) that I can't listen to it for ten minutes without reaching for my Dinosaur CD.


Wow. I suggest you give "Great Eatlon" , "The Pier" , and the entirety of The Happening about another 20 listens. When it's on, his style is far more mature, subtle, and profound than ever before. You might have your nostalgic favorites, or appreciate Howard writing in a different style, but if anything Dreamcatcher and Devil are prototypes, not the basis of inferior knockoffs. I consider Atlantis the peak of that particular animation style, and I think Signs still stands up among his best work period, but the accessibility of his older music doesn't justify belittling something as a knockoff just because you can't grasp how sublime it's become...

 
 
 Posted:   May 6, 2013 - 7:28 PM   
 By:   facehugger   (Member)



Wow. I suggest you give "Great Eatlon" , "The Pier" , and the entirety of The Happening about another 20 listens. When it's on, his style is far more mature, subtle, and profound than ever before. You might have your nostalgic favorites, or appreciate Howard writing in a different style, but if anything Dreamcatcher and Devil are prototypes, not the basis of inferior knockoffs. I consider Atlantis the peak of that particular animation style, and I think Signs still stands up among his best work period, but the accessibility of his older music doesn't justify belittling something as a knockoff just because you can't grasp how sublime it's become...


I did enjoy "Great Eatlon" when I was younger but now I've come to the conclusion that it's merely a weaker reprise of "The Hand of Fate."

"The Pier" is nothing special. Typical sugarcoated Hollywood EMOTIONAL(TM) stuff that even Zimmer can crank out.

"The Happening" is good and I listen to it once every month. But simply replacing the violin from "The Village" with cello falls too far below the high bar he set for himself in "The Village."

Since I used to regard JNH as my favorite composer, I hold him to a much higher standard than you do. As JNH stops being fresh after The Village, I now turn to Marco Beltrami as he seems to come off with something new in every score.

 
 Posted:   May 6, 2013 - 8:01 PM   
 By:   TM   (Member)



Wow. I suggest you give "Great Eatlon" , "The Pier" , and the entirety of The Happening about another 20 listens. When it's on, his style is far more mature, subtle, and profound than ever before. You might have your nostalgic favorites, or appreciate Howard writing in a different style, but if anything Dreamcatcher and Devil are prototypes, not the basis of inferior knockoffs. I consider Atlantis the peak of that particular animation style, and I think Signs still stands up among his best work period, but the accessibility of his older music doesn't justify belittling something as a knockoff just because you can't grasp how sublime it's become...


I did enjoy "Great Eatlon" when I was younger but now I've come to the conclusion that it's merely a weaker reprise of "The Hand of Fate."

"The Pier" is nothing special. Typical sugarcoated Hollywood EMOTIONAL(TM) stuff that even Zimmer can crank out.

"The Happening" is good and I listen to it once every month. But simply replacing the violin from "The Village" with cello falls too far below the high bar he set for himself in "The Village."

Since I used to regard JNH as my favorite composer, I hold him to a much higher standard than you do. As JNH stops being fresh after The Village, I now turn to Marco Beltrami as he seems to come off with something new in every score.


You're welcome to your opinion, but I'm sorry to see you write off your favorite composer because you're bound and determined to compare apples with oranges. Whereas the Village was a very warm score, the Happening achieves the chilling quality of Signs thanks to minimalist piano and very unsettling orchestration. The cello and the violin serve entirely different roles. One hardly replaces the other. The melody in Lady has an enchanting, fairytale quality that Signs never did, and this singlehandedly transforms the movie from sci-fi to dark fantasy. You use a reference to Zimmer in order to try to again belittle Howard, but Zimmer has never written in the Thomas Tallis string style Howard has been using lately (see Airbender). JNH has not stopped being fresh after The Villiage, and I do not hold him to a "lower standard." You obviously prefer his older horror style, and I would imagine the reason you think he's not writing anything interesting is that he isn't currently scoring psychological horror films. Your loss that you feel that way.

 
 
 Posted:   May 6, 2013 - 9:01 PM   
 By:   facehugger   (Member)



You're welcome to your opinion, but I'm sorry to see you write off your favorite composer because you're bound and determined to compare apples with oranges. Whereas the Village was a very warm score, the Happening achieves the chilling quality of Signs thanks to minimalist piano and very unsettling orchestration. The cello and the violin serve entirely different roles. One hardly replaces the other. The melody in Lady has an enchanting, fairytale quality that Signs never did, and this singlehandedly transforms the movie from sci-fi to dark fantasy. You use a reference to Zimmer in order to try to again belittle Howard, but Zimmer has never written in the Thomas Tallis string style Howard has been using lately (see Airbender). JNH has not stopped being fresh after The Villiage, and I do not hold him to a "lower standard." You obviously prefer his older horror style, and I would imagine the reason you think he's not writing anything interesting is that he isn't currently scoring psychological horror films. Your loss that you feel that way.


Fair enough. Just note that I'm not belittling JNH. He's still miles better than Zimmer and he occasionally does some brilliant stuff. But when listening to his more recent scores, I find myself not getting the excitement I got from his earlier works.

 
 Posted:   May 6, 2013 - 10:40 PM   
 By:   WillGoldNewtonBarryGrusin   (Member)


Fair enough. Just note that I'm not belittling JNH. He's still miles better than Zimmer and he occasionally does some brilliant stuff. But when listening to his more recent scores, I find myself not getting the excitement I got from his earlier works.


I agree. I was a huge JNH fan. But in the last decade I could not enjoy his work so much anymore.

But IMO, he did his best work on all Shyamalan films. That´s why I´m really looking forward to AFTER EARTH.

 
 
 Posted:   May 13, 2013 - 3:54 PM   
 By:   stuthomas   (Member)

But the score for The Last Airbender is truly wretched. There is simply no inspiration in it.

Surprised by this...The Wave is a truly inspired piece of music.

 
 
 Posted:   May 13, 2013 - 3:58 PM   
 By:   stuthomas   (Member)

Howard hasn't been the same ever since he joined Zimmer's company. His work has entered "same-y" mode and he tends to bring down the quality of the work (for example, notice how Zimmer dropped him from The Dark Knight Rises and the quality of the score rose tremendously compared to the first two installments).

Possibly one the most uninformed statements I've seen here....unbelievable. There's not one statement here that is even remotely factual.

 
 Posted:   May 13, 2013 - 4:33 PM   
 By:   Justin Boggan   (Member)

SMT:
Howard hasn't been the same ever since he joined Zimmer's company. His work has entered "same-y" mode and he tends to bring down the quality of the work (for example, notice how Zimmer dropped him from The Dark Knight Rises and the quality of the score rose tremendously compared to the first two installments).

Possibly one the most uninformed statements I've seen here....unbelievable. There's not one statement here that is even remotely factual.


Keep in mind he had four points, and two of them were personal opinions. We may agree or not agree with them, even believe they may not be founded in good reason, but they are his own.

 
 Posted:   May 13, 2013 - 5:41 PM   
 By:   billiosis   (Member)

SMT:
Howard hasn't been the same ever since he joined Zimmer's company. His work has entered "same-y" mode and he tends to bring down the quality of the work (for example, notice how Zimmer dropped him from The Dark Knight Rises and the quality of the score rose tremendously compared to the first two installments).

Possibly one the most uninformed statements I've seen here....unbelievable. There's not one statement here that is even remotely factual.


Keep in mind he had four points, and two of them were personal opinions. We may agree or not agree with them, even believe they may not be founded in good reason, but they are his own.


James Newton Howard is a truly talented dude. Maybe that's what so disappointing to me cause I know what dynamic music he is capable of. Unfortunately Howard (or is it Newton-Howard never quite sure) like so many talented composers are forced to write music sound design. Most producers and directors are scared shitless of a melody. THEY DON'T WANT MUSIC. Any composer who dares violate this are trounced by critics and preview audiences as being "old fashioned and sentimental"

 
 Posted:   May 13, 2013 - 7:18 PM   
 By:   yonythemoony   (Member)

JNH has turned into Shyamalan, no matter how good or bad their latest work is, they'll be bashed because it's not like their early works. No matter if JNH writes a full thematic orchestral score, or a minimalistic one, he's bashed. Which is sad, especially because I think that JNH is going back to his roots on electronic music and his works as a arranger (notice that in 2012 he arranged other people's music in Bourne Legacy, The Hunger Games, and Snow White. Besides, he mentioned that he worked very hard on the electronics in Bourne Legacy), than the bombastic film score sound that we all know.

I don't get why people complains about his latest work, when it supports the films he scored. Maybe some of them we're butchered in editing (The Hunger Games and I Am Legend), and others we're kind of ruined by the mix (Green Lantern and Bourne Legacy, where the electronic parts overwhelm the orchestra and choir), but I keep hearing James's sound in all of them.

But, like JNH himself said, you can't please everybody. And sometimes the problem is people, who grow up and stop liking new things, which is why they appreciate better the old stuff.

 
 Posted:   May 14, 2013 - 7:34 PM   
 By:   Mick Moreau   (Member)

JNH has turned into Shyamalan, no matter how good or bad their latest work is, they'll be bashed because it's not like their early works. No matter if JNH writes a full thematic orchestral score, or a minimalistic one, he's bashed. Which is sad, especially because I think that JNH is going back to his roots on electronic music and his works as a arranger (notice that in 2012 he arranged other people's music in Bourne Legacy, The Hunger Games, and Snow White. Besides, he mentioned that he worked very hard on the electronics in Bourne Legacy), than the bombastic film score sound that we all know.

I don't get why people complains about his latest work, when it supports the films he scored. Maybe some of them we're butchered in editing (The Hunger Games and I Am Legend), and others we're kind of ruined by the mix (Green Lantern and Bourne Legacy, where the electronic parts overwhelm the orchestra and choir), but I keep hearing James's sound in all of them.

But, like JNH himself said, you can't please everybody. And sometimes the problem is people, who grow up and stop liking new things, which is why they appreciate better the old stuff.


Yes!!! This post gets the thumbs up smile

 
 Posted:   May 23, 2013 - 11:01 PM   
 By:   WillGoldNewtonBarryGrusin   (Member)

Samples are up on amazon.com:

http://www.amazon.com/After-Earth/dp/B00CXG4A46/ref=tmm_other_meta_binding_title_0


First impression: the influence of HZ/MV is still there, unfortunately...

But there´s also plenty of James Newton Howard´s signature sound. Thankfully so.

Again, I hope that the whole score will persuade me otherwise - but these short glimpses depress me a bit. I was hoping for the old Shyamalan/JNH-magic. This mostly seems to be action beats. No clear theme. Along the way there are quotes from their previous collaborations (or must I say: he copies from himself, Horner-style?).

 
 Posted:   May 24, 2013 - 4:34 AM   
 By:   WillGoldNewtonBarryGrusin   (Member)

Had a second look. Boy these cues on the CD are short. The longest cue is 4:45, and it´s the only one among mostly 1 - 3 minute-cues.

Sounds like a very streamlined score, doing only what scores these days are allowed to do.

 
 Posted:   May 24, 2013 - 5:12 AM   
 By:   mastadge   (Member)

Short cues, but in all they run about an hour. Maybe they'll flow into each other.

 
 Posted:   May 24, 2013 - 6:44 AM   
 By:   johnmullin   (Member)

Sounds like a very streamlined score, doing only what scores these days are allowed to do.

And that is... um, to support the images and scenes and to satisfy what the director wants?

You can't determine what this score is and how it's supposed to be functioning until you've seen the movie! I thought there was some interesting stuff in these clips (1 and 7 alone) that might be better yet when you hear them in context and in increments greater than low-bitrate 30 second excerpts... why so quick to declare everything crap?

 
 Posted:   May 24, 2013 - 8:56 AM   
 By:   Jason LeBlanc   (Member)

Short cues, but in all they run about an hour. Maybe they'll flow into each other.

Yes, some of the tracks do in fact overlap

 
 
 Posted:   May 24, 2013 - 9:25 AM   
 By:   Vermithrax Pejorative   (Member)

Isn't it annoying these days that we have invented crossfades that meld tracks together that have no connection at all and other short cues running 1-2 minutes that are actually part of one 5 or 6 minute cue!! WTF!!

 
 Posted:   May 24, 2013 - 10:02 AM   
 By:   Erik Woods   (Member)

Initial thoughts... this might change after a few more listens.

After Earth is more modern Howard than classic Howard. It's very percussive heavy. Lots of Zimmer is found in the score but it sounds more organic... if that makes any sense. Lots of ostinatos and power anthem like cues with beautiful piano theme thoughout. Some solo cello. But action cues like "Nest Battle" rely on more modern film music techniques than traditional ones. Lot of eerie atmosphere as well. Not as instantly memorable or as engaging as other Howard/Shyamalan projects. This might take some time but it's floating by without anything truly standing out and isn't making me want to listen to it again. And a 28 track 57 minute album doesn't help the listening experience. In saying that the album's last three tracks are very strong and are probably the cues I will return to the most.

-Erik-

 
 Posted:   May 24, 2013 - 12:42 PM   
 By:   Jason LeBlanc   (Member)

I pretty much agree with Erik. Those looking for a return to the greatness of prior Howard/Shyamalan collaborations will be disappointed. This is a completely different sound than any of those. It's kind of like a RCP style action score written by somebody who actually knows what they are doing, and without quite the over-the-top-ness. There's not a lot truly memorable here, unlike say Signs which has that catchy main theme you remember on the first listen.

A disappointment.

 
 
 Posted:   May 24, 2013 - 12:43 PM   
 By:   mstanwick856   (Member)

Bigger Ugh -- Jaden Smith!

I think it'll still be better than The Last Airbender. smile I must admit I was still kinda bummed that movie bombed because we could've had some epic JNH for the sequels! Hopefully this will be equally epic.

Other than Last Airbender and maybe Lady in the Water, I don't really understand the hate for M. Night though.

My wife and I thought The Happening was incredibly disturbing and fantastic (amazing score definitely helped), though I can understand why people don't like it. I think a lot of people didn't get the humor in it though. And I can't fathom why all the hate for The Village; I thought it was superb. Also, the film he produced called Devil bears his fingerprints all over it and is really creepy and well done IMO.

Unbreakable is my favorite.

Yavar


I have enjoyed all of Shyamalan's films except Sixth Sense which I thought was a little contrived.

I haven't seen The Last Airbender however.

 
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