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 Posted:   Oct 10, 2007 - 3:09 AM   
 By:   ahem   (Member)

I couldn't find any earlier threads on this score.

Does anyone else find it compelling that a late Golden Age composer scored an adult orientated, late 80s (which is really is despite being released in 1990) action movie? Yes, parts of it sound derivitive of other far earlier Rosenman works, but with the big percussive drums and all it often fits right in with the action sound Goldsmith was doing around this time (think TOTAL RECALL).

My main question, I guess, is why such an older generation composer would put his name to a film linked with so much gratutitous sadism? This had to be by far the worst seen in a mainstream Hollywood movie up until that time. The scene in which officer Duffy is torn apart ALIVE with a blade on a hospital bed (before the presence of a twelve year) is a particular stand out. Then you have various other grissly, graphic death scenes involving crushed skulls or just the living skull and nerve remains of human beings, forced into cyborg body add ons. Even the stop motion animated robot fights are unusually nasty and graphic in the extreme. Obviously no musician integrity here.

Was this off the back of STAR TREK IV for Rosenman? I actually love the choir and the overall more sarcastic approach to the scoring. The self aware chorus is a hoot! Very clever send up, and yet the militaristic spirit of Poledouris' original score is intact.

How I really wish they'd shake things up today and get an older guy to score a mainstream Hollywood action movie. Maybe that's what Schifrin on these RUSH HOUR movies is? I don't know...

 
 Posted:   Oct 10, 2007 - 4:19 AM   
 By:   Tester   (Member)

Except for the main theme, Rosenman work for Robocop 2 is mediocre at best. The problem is with Rosenman, not the movie: he didn't take things seriously enough (as with ST IV), probably because he thinks a great deal of himself and decided that this movie wasnt good enough for his supposed "incredible talent".

 
 Posted:   Oct 10, 2007 - 5:05 AM   
 By:   Heath   (Member)

probably because he thinks a great deal of himself.

He's got company. He's arguably one of the top five most influential film composers - influential, not because others have copied his style, but because of the way he demonstrated that dissonance, sometimes strong dissonance, can work in straight drama and not just horror movies. Sadly, and boringly, that lesson has been lost in recent times.

I like the Robo 2 score. I remember at the time saying aloud "Wow, real film music!" because even then that kind of involved, close-context scoring was fast disappearing.

The only let down in the score, for me, is the absence of the Rosenman Pyramid. frown Me loves those stacked fifths! big grin

 
 Posted:   Oct 10, 2007 - 9:00 AM   
 By:   LeHah   (Member)

probably because he thinks a great deal of himself and decided that this movie wasnt good enough for his supposed "incredible talent".

Your rather mean supposition is based on...?

 
 
 Posted:   Oct 10, 2007 - 9:40 AM   
 By:   AndyDursin   (Member)

That main theme (with the chorus singing "Robocop!") makes me cringe just thinking about it! smile

It's a mediocre score for an absolutely awful film IMO. One of the most mean-spirited and terrible sequels in history.

 
 Posted:   Oct 10, 2007 - 9:49 AM   
 By:   Sarge   (Member)

It's a mediocre score for an absolutely awful film IMO. One of the most mean-spirited and terrible sequels in history.


It's hard for me to hate a movie that features a heavily armed, drug-addicted, stop-motion robot that mows down cops and innocent civilians alike in its quest for dope.

However, the score is so completely awful and inappropriate it really detracts from the experience.

Somebody needs to take Basil's score for ROBOCOP 3 and remix it into ROBOCOP 2...

 
 
 Posted:   Oct 10, 2007 - 10:09 AM   
 By:   Professor Hubert Farnswor   (Member)

That main theme (with the chorus singing "Robocop!") makes me cringe just thinking about it! smile

It's a mediocre score for an absolutely awful film IMO. One of the most mean-spirited and terrible sequels in history.


I agree that the chorus singing Robocop is over the top but I really enjoy the rest of the score.
It perfectly characterizes the bleak and mean
society the movie describes.

Unlike many people I actually prefer ROBOCOP 2
over the original.
In Verhoeven`s ROBOCOP only the bad guy Ronny Cox discredits an otherwise ok corporation.
At the end they simply fire the bad guy and the reputation is brought back.
It was this message that I never liked.
Kershner`s ROBOCOP 2 portrays the whole OCP corporation as corrupt, criminal and fascist and thus shows the dangerous side of that kind of private security corporation.

In R2 OCP is criminal and dangerous in general while in R1 it only had some wrong employees who simply hat to be fired.

Kershner quite drastically showed what might happen to society when police and security has been sold to private commercial interests.
Just the other day I thought about how topical this subject is when I read about the Blackwater company in Iraq.

To make a long story short :

I like the film and the score.

 
 
 Posted:   Oct 10, 2007 - 12:05 PM   
 By:   Intro to Jar Jar Binks   (Member)

Unsure if a Starlog issue was the source of this, but an interview done at the time of the film's release had Rosenman blasting Poledouris's first score as being ineffective. confused

 
 
 Posted:   Oct 10, 2007 - 12:05 PM   
 By:   Intro to Jar Jar Binks   (Member)

double post

 
 
 Posted:   Oct 10, 2007 - 12:06 PM   
 By:   Ichabod Slipp   (Member)

I think that the final 20 minutes or so of this film are among the greatest things I've ever seen in a film. I'm not a Robocop fan. Didn't care for the first film,haven't bothered with the 3rd film or the tv series.And have no plans ever to do so. I took an interest in ROBOCOP 2 because:

[1]Irvin Kershner directed it

[2] Leonard Rosenman scored it

[3] And because of the cool hulking Robocop 2 monster.

I have the dvd of this film and check it out quite a bit. Kershner not surprisingly managed to equal and even surpass the great duel between Luke Skywalker and Darth Vader in THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK with this new Darth Vader like monster he transformed Tom Noonan into.
It just mystifies me that this film is so hated when one like myself while watching it is completly awestruck,exhilarated, and flat out blown away. Oh well. It's their loss.

And I seriously think Rosenman's score is way better than Pouledourus' previous score. It's grimmer,grittier..and spookier i.e. the music accompanying the Frankensteinian transformation of Noonan into the monster. Kind of like his one Twilight Zone score AND WHEN THE SKY OPENED.

I love the overture that appears during the end credits.The mixture of solemn classical baroque mixed with a heavy,brassy,boldness and metalic clanging is just incredible.

I too could've done without the two singers singing 'Robooo-cop!'but the surrounding music is so good that I find myself ignoring the singing. The overture is a fitting close to what is an underrated film in my [and other peoples] book.
Kershner should be proud of this film. He did a fine job on it. Same goes for Rosenman.

 
 
 Posted:   Oct 10, 2007 - 12:43 PM   
 By:   Membership Expired   (Member)

I can't take the score seriously when the voices start coming in. It's a guilty pleasure at best, but I'd rather admit to owning gay porn then owning that CD.

As for the film, it's meanspirited rubbish, that totally misunderstood what the appeal was of Verhoeven's brilliant original.

 
 Posted:   Oct 10, 2007 - 1:02 PM   
 By:   TominAtl   (Member)

Rosenmans "Robocop 2" and Morrione's "Mission to Mars" are the only 2 scores that actually made me and the audience laugh out loud while hearing it during the film and then upon leaving the theatre, at least of the countless number of movies that I have seen in a theatre.

I cannot bring myself to listen to either one of them on their own. They conjure up too much unintentional hilarity. big grin

Tom

 
 
 Posted:   Oct 10, 2007 - 1:12 PM   
 By:   Morricone   (Member)

Rosenmans "Robocop 2" and Morrione's "Mission to Mars" are the only 2 scores that actually made me and the audience laugh out loud while hearing it during the film and then upon leaving the theatre, at least of the countless number of movies that I have seen in a theatre.

I cannot bring myself to listen to either one of them on their own. They conjure up too much unintentional hilarity. big grin

Tom


Got another one. The pyramid sequence in YOUNG SHERLOCK HOLMES. All 4 of us in the theater had our fill of hilarity over the score's self importance over such silly imagery. Of course the walking stained glass came close. big grin

 
 
 Posted:   Oct 10, 2007 - 1:29 PM   
 By:   Bill R. Myers   (Member)

Despite the composer's longstanding friendship with director Kershner, it does indeed seem strange to have a distinguished practitioner of the old school, such as Rosenman, associated with a piece of trashy comic book nihilism like Robocop 2. (Then again, he had scored plenty of shclocky films previously: The Car, Race with the Devil, Prophecy.) From what I understand, various circumstances prevented the two from working together on previous films.

I like the score a lot. I thought the weird Rosenman traits were a perfect match for the scifi stuff and violent action, and I actually like his theme as much as Poledouris's, chanting sopranos and all. (Poledouris's theme also had a tongue-in-cheek edge, but I can understand why some people got annoyed when Rosenman upped the camp factor in such a way.) There is a greater feeling of potency and grandeur in Poledouris's music, but there's always plenty of interest in a Rosenman score.

The film was quite a dour and dire affair. While the first film stretched violence to horrifying, memorably absurd lengths, Robocop 2 just piles on gratuitous, unimaginative brutality and nastiness; I did like that there was an attempt to retain the satire and the wacky commercials, but it was mostly forced and lame. I did love Phil Tippet's stop-motion work, which must have been some of the last of its kind. I miss stop-motion.

 
 Posted:   Oct 10, 2007 - 1:30 PM   
 By:   Heath   (Member)

Robo2 is funnier. As we say in the UK, it's taking the piss from start to finish in a way that Verhoeven's original didn't. Apart from the jokey ads (which felt like a post-production afterthought), Robo 1 actually took itself deceptively seriously.

Robo 2's very last shot, with Robo cranking his robotic head, is funny and subversive to the core. It takes a fair amount of balls to end a movie on that.

With all due respect to Basil, I couldn't recall a note of the score five minutes after I left the theatre. Rosenman's work on the other hand... well, you just can't forget his Robo-strut now can you?

 
 Posted:   Oct 10, 2007 - 1:56 PM   
 By:   Jon A. Bell   (Member)

Unsure if a Starlog issue was the source of this, but an interview done at the time of the film's release had Rosenman blasting Poledouris's first score as being ineffective. confused

Variety called Rosenmann's Robo II score "weak and ineffective."

Years ago, when Rosenmann commented on the first film's score to Doug Fake at Intrada, Rosenmann said, "they got a score by some Greek guy!" He didn't even know who Basil Poledouris was.

Later, though, when the Intrada gang mentioned Rosenmann's comments (somewhat edited) to Basil, we concluded that, "well, then we saw who the producers chose for the 3rd film, so..."

Basil's response?

"Yeah... like I was worried!" (With a wink.) We all started laughing.

As for Robo II, it's one of the most needlessly sadistic and unpleasant films I've ever seen.

-- Jon

 
 
 Posted:   Oct 10, 2007 - 3:28 PM   
 By:   Pariah   (Member)

Rosenmans "Robocop 2" and Morrione's "Mission to Mars" are the only 2 scores that actually made me and the audience laugh out loud while hearing it during the film and then upon leaving the theatre, at least of the countless number of movies that I have seen in a theatre.

I cannot bring myself to listen to either one of them on their own. They conjure up too much unintentional hilarity. big grin

Tom


I am not a Morricone fan - except for two works - La Leggenda del Pianista sul'Oceano and... Mission to Mars! I think both films are brilliant and the scores work wonders! Each to their own, I guess. I only have three or four Morricone CDs.

 
 Posted:   Oct 10, 2007 - 4:57 PM   
 By:   LeHah   (Member)

That main theme (with the chorus singing "Robocop!") makes me cringe just thinking about it!

...I have to hear this score.

 
 
 Posted:   Oct 10, 2007 - 5:25 PM   
 By:   Ag^Janus   (Member)

That main theme (with the chorus singing "Robocop!") makes me cringe just thinking about it!

...I have to hear this score.


At first it sounds like a disaster, then it grows in the mind, turning to a spiritual like expression.

 
 
 Posted:   Oct 10, 2007 - 5:57 PM   
 By:   Rick15   (Member)

[startquote
As for Robo II, it's one of the most needlessly sadistic and unpleasant films I've ever seen.

-- Jon

Try watching Hostel then - it's much much worse.

 
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