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 Posted:   Feb 6, 2018 - 8:54 PM   
 By:   other tallguy   (Member)

I'm going through a Horner binge.

The Wrath of Khan is the first Horner score I ever heard. It has an outsized impact on me for lots of reasons.

But... The Rocketeer. It's like Wrath of Khan and Krull by the man who scored Glory! It might be the culmination of everything that went into TWOK and Krull and Willow and Brainstorm!

But... Then he did TITANIC. The score when the world really learned who James Horner was. His whole bag of tricks put to their ultimate use.

Ok, you Avatar fans. Put in your two cents. Or ten.

I'll be listening to The Rocketeer. Old friend.

(I was at a 1940's dance put on by the Confederate Air Force. 40's dress, aircraft hangar, B-17 parked at the front. They started to play Begin the Beguine. I sang along. People who were ALIVE when that song was popular looked at this 20 year old kid and asked "That song has WORDS?")

 
 
 Posted:   Feb 6, 2018 - 9:45 PM   
 By:   Paul MacLean   (Member)

The Rocketeer is a great score, but for me, only the end title has standalone appeal. Star Trek II was the first Horner score I ever heard (and I still enjoy it), but Krull remains my favorite, never equaled (Willow -- while very good in places -- doesn't hold a candle to it).

Not a Titanic fan I'm afraid. It's solid, and the "Hymn to the Sea" is very good, but overall the score's not my cup of tea. Ironically I am a big Braveheart fan (but I can't argue with the criticisms that Braveheart should have been less "new agey" and more boldly orchestral in the classic epic style).

Sneakers has been in the "save for later" limbo of my Amazon shopping cart for a couple of years now. Must do something about that.

 
 
 Posted:   Feb 6, 2018 - 9:45 PM   
 By:   Avatarded   (Member)

Not being big on the early years, I'm not as big a fan of Wrath of Khan as...virtually everyone.

The Rocketeer and Titanic are (to me) far superior representations of what Horner's greatest strengths were: His passion for the material (Flight in The Rocketeer) and heart (in Titanic, but of course there's a huge heart in both scores)

Rocketeer is more focused as a story, where all the material has a unified sound and series of themes and is therefore more straightforward. It's a big, beautiful adventure.

Titanic is more diverse, and goes through its own series of phases or movements:

-The mystery (exploring the wreck, discovering relics and connections to the past)
-The celebration (1912, boarding the ship and the excitement)
-The romance (Jack and Rose forming a bond, letting that bond grow stronger)
-The impact when everything changes (the iceberg)
-The panic (confusion and separating the classes)
-The chaos (the sinking)
-The tragedy (loss of life)
-The reflection (coming to terms with the past and the tragedy of "Titanic")

Hearing the entire score in chronological order really shows this.

 
 
 Posted:   Feb 6, 2018 - 9:56 PM   
 By:   jb1234   (Member)

As far as the complete releases go, only Wrath of Khan sustains its length for me. The others are just too long and have cues that aren't consistently interesting.

 
 Posted:   Feb 6, 2018 - 10:18 PM   
 By:   townerbarry   (Member)

I'm going through a Horner binge.

The Wrath of Khan is the first Horner score I ever heard. It has an outsized impact on me for lots of reasons.

But... The Rocketeer. It's like Wrath of Khan and Krull by the man who scored Glory! It might be the culmination of everything that went into TWOK and Krull and Willow and Brainstorm!

But... Then he did TITANIC. The score when the world really learned who James Horner was. His whole bag of tricks put to their ultimate use.

Ok, you Avatar fans. Put in your two cents. Or ten.

I'll be listening to The Rocketeer. Old friend.

(I was at a 1940's dance put on by the Confederate Air Force. 40's dress, aircraft hangar, B-17 parked at the front. They started to play Begin the Beguine. I sang along. People who were ALIVE when that song was popular looked at this 20 year old kid and asked "That song has WORDS?")



Question. What scores sound alike?
Answer. Horner Scores.

 
 
 Posted:   Feb 6, 2018 - 10:25 PM   
 By:   Reeve   (Member)

MY TOP TEN (whoops, 12) JAMES HORNER SCORES (not in exact order, but in general, the top five are concrete).

1. Cocoon
2. Titanic
3. Rocketeer
4. Star Trek II: The Wrath Of Khan
5. The Mask Of Zorro
6. Bicentennial Man
7. An American Tail
8. Field Of Dreams
9. Willow
10. Project X
11. Jumanji
12. Braveheart

(Note: With the sequel scores, they are linked together, so for example - "Cocoon", and "Cocoon: The Return", they are both number #1 - "Star Trek Two" & "Three" are both in number #4 place etc...)

With Avatar, even though a great film, his music style started to change around then...

 
 Posted:   Feb 6, 2018 - 10:31 PM   
 By:   BackToTheFutureFan   (Member)

My Horner favorites:

Top 2:
1. Titanic... by a huge margin
2. Legends of the Fall

The rest:
3. Glory
4. Avatar
5. Commando
6. Apocalypto
7. Braveheart
8. The Legend of Zorro
9. The New World
10. Deep Impact (so underrated)

 
 
 Posted:   Feb 6, 2018 - 10:45 PM   
 By:   kaseykockroach   (Member)

Tummy Trouble, obviously.

(In seriousness, I almost instinctively think Land Before Time when asked what my favorite Horner work is)

 
 
 Posted:   Feb 6, 2018 - 11:22 PM   
 By:   HalloweenBorg   (Member)

I personally would choose Search for Spock but that’s just me! wink

 
 
 Posted:   Feb 6, 2018 - 11:22 PM   
 By:   Jim Doherty   (Member)

In the Top Ten lists that have shown up in this thread, I find it hard to believe that no one has mentioned BRAINSTORM.

 
 Posted:   Feb 7, 2018 - 1:46 AM   
 By:   Hercule Platini   (Member)

Of those three named, it's Wrath Of Khan all the way. It's one of my Top Three Horners (the others being Aliens and Krull). Some of his other scores have bits I like but don't grab me as a whole (Commando, Rocketeer, Mask Of Zorro, Red Heat), some are perfectly fine but just rarely come off the shelf (Sneakers, Search For Spock) and I have a soft spot for Class Action.

At some point I drifted away from Horner, possibly around 1995 but certainly by 2000: I still bought the albums but for whatever they never clicked with me - House Of Sand And Fog, The Missing, Windtalkers. I have a theory that some of his CD releases were just too long to get into and, while I did buy the Varese DeLuxe of Aliens and LaLaLand's 2-disc Krull, I would probably have struggled with those if I hadn't had the shorter album versions before. (I didn't upgrade Wrath Of Khan from the original GNP disc.)

Rocketeer is fine. It has a lovely theme, terrific action music, and I don't mind the two songs dropped halfway through, which normally I would. But for some reason it's a CD I rarely reach for. Titanic I'm not sure if I still even have. But Wrath Of Khan is just superb. In fact I've just put the CD on now and it's wonderful.

 
 Posted:   Feb 7, 2018 - 2:18 AM   
 By:   Nyborg   (Member)

i'm also not a huge fan of Wrath of Khan, I prefer the more serene Search for Spock.

I grew up with his early work, and since Intrada's release The Rocketeer has become my quintessential Horner score. It balances well that youthful vigor, reined in a little (Krull has so many ideas inside it), with the emotional mastery he became known for.

Titanic represents that later stage of his career, every year there are a slew of such films aimed squarely at the oscars, and that camp would not let Horner go once they had him, but most of those films, and inevitably the scores that go with them, are transparently reaching and trying too hard for me.

 
 
 Posted:   Feb 7, 2018 - 3:27 AM   
 By:   jsmiley108   (Member)

All 80s and 90s stuff for me - and all the movies are excellent!

Star Trek - The Wrath of Khan (1982)
Gorky Park (1983)
Aliens (1986)
Sneakers (1992)
Searching for Bobby Fischer (1993)
Apollo 13 (1995)
Mask of Zorro (1998)

 
 
 Posted:   Feb 7, 2018 - 3:43 AM   
 By:   JGouse0498   (Member)

Based on those three choices, I'd have to say:

1. TITANIC: I agree with the member who posted earlier that this score runs the gamut of emotions: mystery, celebration, romance, panic/chaos, etc. Having the full score as Horner originally intended is a huge plus and something I'd wanted for years. That being said, it is a bit difficult to get through it in one sitting (not necessarily a bad thing because complete and chronological is the best representation of this score), and sometimes I'm just not in the mood to listen to the synth-heavy nature of the score. But this is the Horner score that gets the most rotation on my playlists.

2. WRATH OF KHAN: This is the best option for a straight-thru listening experience. It's not overly long. The cues move at a solid pace. They don't move too quickly (I'm not a fan of scores littered with cues clocking in at under a minute), but they don't drag out either. It's also easy to hear while driving in the car. For some reason though, I find myself not really gravitating to it when looking for a score. Not really sure why that is.

3. THE ROCKETEER: This score has my favorite theme, but I find that Intrada's mastering is too quiet--making it near impossible to listen in the car without cranking the volume way up. Also, the 7+ minute "Neville Sinclair's House" brings the score to a screeching halt as it feels more ambient than the rest of the score (the overall quieter/softer mastering is really a negative here).


What I'm hopeful for is a re-mastered C&C release of THE MASK OF ZORRO sometime in the near future. A combined MASK and LEGEND set (probably 4-discs) would be even better!

 
 
 Posted:   Feb 7, 2018 - 5:44 AM   
 By:   TerraEpon   (Member)

My answer is "Yes".

 
 Posted:   Feb 7, 2018 - 7:01 AM   
 By:   solium   (Member)

WOK and Rocketeer tie as my favorite Horner scores. I've never liked Krull and think it's one of his cheapest sounding scores. As I've said before Titanic grew on me quite a bit over time.

Top ten in no particular order:

Wrath of Khan
Rocketeer
Willow
Cocoon
Glory
Land Before Time
An American Tail
Balto
Braveheart
Legends of the Fall

Edit: Kinda hard to do a top ten, I could put Might Joe Young, Titanic, Mask of Zorro, We're Back a Dinosaur Story, among others in the top list.

 
 Posted:   Feb 7, 2018 - 8:07 AM   
 By:   ZapBrannigan   (Member)

10. Deep Impact (so underrated)


TITANIC and WRATH OF KHAN are the go-to, evergreen scores for me. And APOLLO 13. But DEEP IMPACT is very moving too, and it absolutely makes the film work.

 
 Posted:   Feb 7, 2018 - 8:15 AM   
 By:   Grecchus   (Member)

WOK and Braveheart. I seem to remember Horner was 28 when he scored WOK. The Rocketeer was directed by Joe Johnston, whom we've seen too little of lately.

 
 
 Posted:   Feb 7, 2018 - 8:40 AM   
 By:   Filmmaker   (Member)

None of them before THE SEARCH FOR SPOCK, which I steadfastly argue is both a better film and score than the also-great WRATH OF KHAN. Also, as superb as TITANIC’s score is, its particular sonic stylings are bested by BRAVEHEART.

 
 
 Posted:   Feb 7, 2018 - 1:02 PM   
 By:   BBoulle   (Member)

Wrath of Khan is the 2nd best ST score after The Motion Picture. And my favorite Horner score. And #3 ST score for me, is First Contact. Goldsmith, Horner, Goldsmith. Not a bad trifecta.

 
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