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 Posted:   Dec 7, 2014 - 2:59 AM   
 By:   DeputyRiley   (Member)

I enjoyed your breakdown too Dep. Like Joan, I only wish I had the CD to play while feasting on
your points and info (although unlike Joan I didn't wait for Santa and took matters into my own
hands and hope it arrives from Americee very soon).
I will enjoy spotting your highlighted themes as I spin it.


Thanks, Kev! Like I said to Joan, post back here once you've listened and let us know what you think! If you're so inclined. smile

 
 
 Posted:   Dec 7, 2014 - 5:32 AM   
 By:   Luc Van der Eeken   (Member)

I can safely say I like this one the most of the three, dramatically I think it's the strongest. A strong conclusion to a fabulous year from him. I think part 2 will be the masterpiece.

 
 
 Posted:   Dec 16, 2014 - 3:46 AM   
 By:   Kev McGann   (Member)

My CD arrived on Saturday.
Hope to spin it a few times today...more news at 9 wink

 
 Posted:   Dec 16, 2014 - 5:09 AM   
 By:   DeputyRiley   (Member)

My CD arrived on Saturday.
Hope to spin it a few times today...more news at 9 wink


Pump up the jam!

 
 
 Posted:   Dec 16, 2014 - 5:41 AM   
 By:   jfallon   (Member)

Hey DR I also used to post more in depth lengthy posts but like you felt they went nowhere so I stopped. But I do think they are read but just not replied too. Anyway nice breakdown!

 
 Posted:   Dec 16, 2014 - 6:47 AM   
 By:   DeputyRiley   (Member)

Hey DR I also used to post more in depth lengthy posts but like you felt they went nowhere so I stopped. But I do think they are read but just not replied too. Anyway nice breakdown!

So you feel my pain! wink I joke. Thank you for what you said. I promise if I see an in-depth lengthy post by you I will be sure to give you a substantive response. I've got your back! I really do appreciate what you, Kev, and Joan said, helping alleviate my silly message board posting insecurities. razz

 
 
 Posted:   Dec 18, 2014 - 7:41 AM   
 By:   Kev McGann   (Member)

As I anticipated, from my viewing of the film, this is the strongest score of the 3 so far for me.
There's almost a religious feel to a lot of the cues, as the intensity of the situations increases.
I agree that this score triumphs, in some small part, due to the breadcrumbs that have been put down in the first two scores. This one felt like things locking into place.
I've played through twice and already noted more tracks (for my keeper playlist) than almost the first two scores combined.
I must admit to being disappointed when Elfman left this gig early doors, but now I can't imagine ANY other composer or scores being more fitting to this series than JNH.

 
 
 Posted:   Jan 15, 2015 - 10:21 PM   
 By:   joan hue   (Member)

I'm back. Hope more people will chime in about this score.

Still looking like an ancient, decrepit moose, I try to work out at a gym about 5 times a week. Music, usually rock music, is always playing in the background to help get the “youngies” and the “oldies” moving. Yesterday, The Hanging Tree was played. It was Jennifer Lawrence singing, and it was the original track….at first. Then began rock and roll hand-clapping. Hand-clapping? It sped up to a fast rhythm with twangy electric guitars. Hmmmmm. I tried to find this one on youtube. Couldn’t find it, but there are lots of rock “take-offs” of this track on youtube if anyone is interested.

Deputy Riley, you did an amazing job in your detailed analysis. At first I struggled because you refer to themes in Mockingjay Part 1 that you had heard in Hunger Games and Catching Fire. I don’t own those two CDs. For some reason, I never was really hooked on the first two scores. Something more grabbed me in this 3rd CD. Maybe I was making subliminal connections to J N Howard’s first two scores after repeated viewings. I think music often works on a subliminal level. You did a wonderful job of pointing out how Howard revisited and varied previous themes in this third score. I’m tempted to buy the previous two scores.

I agree with you that Howard doesn’t use as much “rustic and rural instrumentation” in this 3rd outing like he did in the first two scores. That makes sense because the rather poor, primitive District 12 is gone. Yes, there is a bit of that rustic vibe in the District 12 tracks. I also heard it a bit in the early parts of The Hanging Tree.

For me this score has adopted a more militaristic approach in the music especially in The Arsenal and Air Raid Drill. Makes sense as this is now a narrative that is not about surviving a death game; it is about rebellion and war. Also, I hear a lot of heroics in his music. This is a war movie and a movie about heroics that is an archetype for David and Goliath. I find the score an emotional ride with sublime, very sad themes layering the scenes of devastation and rousing action music that depicts the “little guys” saying, “We won’t take this anymore.”

I'm excited to see where J N Howard goes in Part 2.

 
 Posted:   Jan 16, 2015 - 4:26 AM   
 By:   DeputyRiley   (Member)

Deputy Riley, you did an amazing job in your detailed analysis. At first I struggled because you refer to themes in Mockingjay Part 1 that you had heard in Hunger Games and Catching Fire. I don’t own those two CDs. For some reason, I never was really hooked on the first two scores. Something more grabbed me in this 3rd CD. Maybe I was making subliminal connections to J N Howard’s first two scores after repeated viewings. I think music often works on a subliminal level. You did a wonderful job of pointing out how Howard revisited and varied previous themes in this third score. I’m tempted to buy the previous two scores.

I agree with you that Howard doesn’t use as much “rustic and rural instrumentation” in this 3rd outing like he did in the first two scores. That makes sense because the rather poor, primitive District 12 is gone. Yes, there is a bit of that rustic vibe in the District 12 tracks. I also heard it a bit in the early parts of The Hanging Tree.

For me this score has adopted a more militaristic approach in the music especially in The Arsenal and Air Raid Drill. Makes sense as this is now a narrative that is not about surviving a death game; it is about rebellion and war. Also, I hear a lot of heroics in his music. This is a war movie and a movie about heroics that is an archetype for David and Goliath. I find the score an emotional ride with sublime, very sad themes layering the scenes of devastation and rousing action music that depicts the “little guys” saying, “We won’t take this anymore.”

I'm excited to see where J N Howard goes in Part 2.


Yay! A detailed, thoughtful post about the score! Or even, a post about the score! I'll take anything.

Thank you Joan for your kind words and glad my analysis was of some use to you, even though it did incorporate references to the first two scores. I can't separate any of these (so far) 3 scores from one another; I love the trilogy music so much it's all one long connected journey.

I know a lot of people have really perked up in interest and support of this third score, but it really does baffle me how Mockingjay suddenly captivates so many who didn't care for, or who were lukewarm about, the first two scores. I've read explanations given, but like I said the entire series of scores are all so intrinsically and intimately intertwined with one another (to my ears) that it's hard to individualize them, or even compare them. But I respect those that do, and if nothing else I'm at least glad that so many are getting on board with this third score, whether it's their preference of scores from the series or it encourages them to revisit the previous two scores to re-evaluate them -- hopefully helping them see the first two scores in a new light. Mockingjay could serve as a flashlight to help one explore the first two and discover new things and the interconnectedness of the series' music. Even if you aren't captivated by the first two scores (gasp!), revisiting them after enjoying the third score could probably make you enjoy the third score even more!

Joan, and anyone else, I do strongly suggest that you buy the previous scores (they're pretty cheap on CD on Amazon -- about $9 for the first and $12 for the second), with all my conviction I earnestly encourage everyone to try to connect the musical dots of the series' music and try to see them all as a whole rather than individual scores, if that's what does it for you. Maybe if you see each score as a piece of a larger puzzle rather than examining their merits exclusively, they can be appreciated more. And yes, Joan, it is this "revisitation and variation" of themes and motifs that lend such strength and structural ingenuity to the series' music, and is one of the things I love most about the scores and his writing for them. Hopefully my analysis here will help in exploring the connective tissue of the scores.

I too, Joan, hear a lot of heroics in JNH's music. For me, though, it's been there from the very beginning, albeit in different guises. In the first score, Howard wrote heroic music for Katniss in a single young woman's desperate survival mode, a little more low-key and singular but heroic nonetheless ("Katniss Afoot," "Booby Trap," "Searching for Peeta"). In the second score, Howard wrote heroic music for both Katniss and now for the other tributes in the Games, the first key players and martyrs in the rebellion, increasing the scale of the heroic tunes with added orchestra and choir in cues like "Bow and Arrow," the second half of "Monkey Mutts," and "Arena Crumbles." Finally, in Mockingjay Howard further increased the epic scale of his heroic music (with more militaristic shades) to address the matured woman Katniss has become, the driven soldier she is becoming, and the whole of the rebellion coming together en masse (with cues like "The Arsenal" -- particularly the last 45 seconds of that cue -- "The Hanging Tree," and "Air Raid Drill"). And like you said, Joan, in addition to the heroic tones Howard also routinely incorporates devastating sadness in his music -- "Rue's Farewell" from the first score, the final minute of "Katniss is Chosen" in the second score, the final minute of "Incoming Bombers" and all of "District 12 Ruins" in Mockinjay -- among many, many others, both quiet and subtle and/or unabashedly unrestrained.

As you can see, I could talk about these scores all day...

 
 
 Posted:   Jan 16, 2015 - 10:43 AM   
 By:   joan hue   (Member)

I could only give a general impression of this score instead of a detailed analysis because I don’t really know the first two scores that well. Deputy, you are the guru of these scores and have nicely tied all three together. Maybe I will get the first two as you suggested. I think any trilogy or “quadrilogy” should, if possible, keep the same composer and literally braid together significant lei motifs, motifs and themes as each film progresses. Such compositions provide reminders, reminisces, and recalls. Also, such themes should be varied as narratives evolve.

I’m not sure why I didn’t connect with the first two scores, but I might post a theory on that in a new topic. (I knew half way through Dinosaur, I’d buy the CD immediately.)

I think J N Howard built a scaffold in his first score. Such scaffolding lead to adding more flesh to all the scores’ architectures, and I’m sure we’ll hear more thematic unity in the final movie as well as some new ideas.

I’m reminded a bit of all the thematic unity in the Lord Of The Rings trilogy where a myriad of key themes were utilized in each film. Doug Adams wrote a book about all those motifs and themes. Hey, DP, maybe you should consider such a project.

 
 Posted:   Jan 16, 2015 - 1:22 PM   
 By:   DeputyRiley   (Member)

I’m not sure why I didn’t connect with the first two scores, but I might post a theory on that in a new topic. (I knew half way through Dinosaur, I’d buy the CD immediately.)

I'd like to read about that theory! Ironically, I didn't care that much for Dinosaur when I tried it many years ago, but in the spirit of revisiting previous jnh scores, as we've talked about with the first two HG scores, I will take another listen to that Dinosaur. Quid pro quo, Clarice.

I’m reminded a bit of all the thematic unity in the Lord Of The Rings trilogy where a myriad of key themes were utilized in each film. Doug Adams wrote a book about all those motifs and themes. Hey, DP, maybe you should consider such a project.

You may be shocked to know that I've never seen a minute of any of the Hobbit or Lord of the Rings films, nor have I ever heard a note from the scores. Never been a huge Howard Shore fan, Se7en and The Cell notwithstanding. I am all for thematic unity spanning franchises scored by the same composer, however, so maybe I'll check them out. As far as a book or somesuch, I don't think the HG scores (or even the films) have as much cache as the Lord of the Rings phenomenon, and the scores for HG are nowhere near as revered or popular as LotR. I wouldn't think many people would find a HG series score analysis at length of interest...but I'm flattered you'd suggest it!

 
 
 Posted:   Jan 16, 2015 - 10:39 PM   
 By:   joan hue   (Member)

Clarice, I like that new name.

http://www.filmscoremonthly.com/board/posts.cfm?threadID=107772&forumID=1&archive=0

Deputy, I wrote the above thread today which may explain why I didn't notice the first 2 scores.

Yes, I am surprised that you haven't seen the LotR movies or heard the scores, but I'm sure you have your reasons and that's fine. The only reason I mentioned these movies is because they have this huge thematic continuity that you liked in the Hunger Games movies. Also, I was shocked when Shore got the Rings trilogy because I associated his music with Se7en and Silence Of The Lambs. I didn't know he could compose such melodic, grand themes until I saw the LotR trilogy, but that doesn't mean that others didn't care for his music. (Not real fond of the Hobbit movies.)

 
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