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Aisle Seat 8-13: Seconds, The Idolmaker, The Driver
Posted By Andy Dursin 8/12/2013 - 9:00 PM
John Frankenheimer’s supremely disturbing SECONDS (***½, 107 mins., 1966, R) plays like an extended, and hauntingly shot, episode of “The Twilight Zone”: unhappy NYC banker Arthur Hamilton (John Randolph) gets an “offer” from (and is essentially coerced into joining) an old friend, long thought dead, who’s now associated with “The Company.” The irresistible makeover proposed by The Company involves Arthur’s rebirth in the form of a new man, and by that I don’t just mean a makeover – he gets a whole new face and lease on life in the form of Tony Wilson (Rock Hudson), accepting his new identity while saying goodbye to his long-time wife, their passionless marriage and a now-grown daughter he hardly sees.
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Film Score Friday 8/9/13
Posted By Scott Bettencourt 8/8/2013 - 9:00 PM
The latest CD from Quartet is the first-ever commercial release of Georges Delerue's score for the 1983 drama MAN, WOMAN AND CHILD, adapted by Erich Segal (Love Story) from his novel, directed by Dick Richards (The Culpepper Cattle Co., Farewell My Lovely), and starring Martin Sheen, Blythe Danner, Craig T. Nelson and David Hemmings.
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Aisle Seat 8-6: August Assault Edition
Posted By Andy Dursin 8/5/2013 - 9:00 PM
One of Francis Ford Coppola’s “commercial” films of the ‘80s, PEGGY SUE GOT MARRIED (***, 102 mins., 1986, PG-13; RLJ) announced to Hollywood that the “Godfather” director could shake off the failure of recent cinematic experiments “One From the Heart” and “The Cotton Club” and package a slick piece of studio filmmaking.
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Film Score Friday 8/2/13
Posted By Scott Bettencourt 8/1/2013 - 9:00 PM
Kritzerland is following up its terrific, instant sell-out CD of David Raksin's immortal score for director Otto Preminger's classic romantic noir Laura with a two-disc set titled PREMINGER AT FOX. Along with a suite from the Laura score, the set features Raksin's brief score for Daisy Kenyon as well as his full-length scores for Whirlpool and Fallen Angel, along with Cyril Mockridge's score for Where the Sidewalk Ends, partly based on Alfred Newman's classic Street Scene.

Howard Shore will be releasing his score for JIMMY P. on his Howe label. The film, which reunites Shore with his Esther Kahn collaborator, the critically acclaimed French director Arnaud Desplechin, is a period drama about an American Indian (Benicio Del Toro) and his psychiatrist (Mathieu Almaric) in post-World War II America.

On September 10, Varese Sarabande will release the soundtrack to THE ULTIMATE LIFE, the follow-up to the 2006 drama The Ultimate Gift, starring Logan Bartholomew, Peter Fonda, Bill Cobbs and Lee Meriwether, with a score by Gift's composer Mark McKenzie.

Pretty much everyone who cares enough about film music to read this column already knows this, but new Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy, an eight-time Best Picture nominee for producing such films as E.T., The Sixth Sense and Lincoln, has announced that John Williams will score the upcoming seventh Star Wars film (we'll just pretend that animated Clone Wars film didn't happen), to be written by Michael Arndt and directed by J.J. Abrams.

On Friday, August 23 at Santa Monica's Aero Theater, members of the music crew for Neill Blomkamp's upcoming science-fiction thriller ELYSIUM -- including lead orchestrator Penka Kouneva, orchestrator/conductor Alain Mayrand, music editors Rich Walters and Dave Lawrence, and score recording/mixing engineer John Rodd -- will take part in a presentation titled "Bringing the ELYSIUM Score to Life: Tips from the Team." 

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Film Score Friday 7/26/13
Posted By Scott Bettencourt 7/25/2013 - 9:00 PM
This week Intrada releases two CDs that are co-productions with the Walt Disney Studios -- their previously announced release of Hans Zimmer's score for this summer's megabudget Western adventure THE LONE RANGER, and Joel McNeely's score for Disney's 2008 animated spinoff of Peter Pan, TINKER BELL.

Quartet has just announced two upcoming CDs featuring previously unreleased scores by fan favorites -- Cliff Eidelman's score for the 1990 advertising comedy CRAZY PEOPLE, directed by Tony Bill and starring Dudley Moore and Daryl Hannah (when it began filming, it was directed by its screenwriter, Mitch Markowitz, with noted comedy star John Malkovich in the lead); and Pino Donaggio's score for Euro horrormeister Dario Argento's 2005 TV movie DO YOU LIKE HITCHCOCK?

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Aisle Seat 7-23: The Conjuring, Oblivion, WB Archives, Twilight Time
Posted By Andy Dursin 7/22/2013 - 9:00 PM
Gut wrenching, beautifully filmed and perfectly paced, THE CONJURING (***½, 112 mins., R) isn’t just one of the best supernatural chillers of recent years – it truly deserves a place next to “The Exorcist,” “The Innocents” and “Poltergeist” as one of the more memorable cinematic excursions into the paranormal ever produced. That may sound like high praise, but walking out of director James Wan’s stunning thriller, I was hard pressed to think of other horror movies that have captivated me from start to end as much as this one did.
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Film Score Friday 7/19/13
Posted By Scott Bettencourt 7/18/2013 - 9:00 PM
In fairly predictable but still extremely welcome soundtrack news, GNP Crescendo has announced that the next in their series of expanded Star Trek scores (following Generations, First Contact and The Best of Both Worlds) will be a greatly expanded version of Jerry Goldsmith's penultimate score for the franchise, STAR TREK: INSURRECTION. Though the film was a disappointing follow-up to the first-rate First Contact, more like a bland but expensive two-part episode than a memorable entry in the canon, it benefited from striking visual effects, and impressive supporting cast (Donna Murphy, F. Murray Abraham, Gregg Henry, Anthony Zerbe) and Goldsmith's strong and varied symphonic score. The GNP Crescendo CD features Goldsmith's 71 minute score plus 7 minutes of alternate cues.

The latest release from Kritzerland features the original score tracks, released for the first time, from a film and film music classic -- George Stevens' 1951 film version of Theodore Dreiser's An American Tragedy, the classic romantic drama A PLACE IN THE SUN, with Montgomery Clift as the working-class man torn between girlfriend Shelley Winters (who earned a Best Actress nomination while transitioning from '40s sexpot to a decades-long, Oscar-laden career as a character actress) and wealthy Elizabeth Taylor (you can think of the film as Match Point '51). Stevens won his first Best Director Oscar for the film, and the great Franz Waxman won his second consecutive Score Oscar, following his classic Sunset Blvd. The Kritzerland CD (limited to 1000 units, and like the label's wonderful release of Raksin's Laura, a plausible quick sell-out) features the surviving score tracks, including pieces from both Waxman's original version and cues rescored from Waxman material by Victor Young and Daniele Amfitheatrof.

Music Box has announced three upcoming CDs featuring music from three popular film composers, including one Oscar winner and an Oscar-nominated fan favorite -- two previously unreleased Alan Silvestri scores, the amnesia-themed comedy-mystery CLEAN SLATE and director Mira Nair's comedy drama THE PEREZ FAMILY; music from three Gabriel Yared scores, including the 1990 romantic adventure THE KING'S WHORE, starring Timothy Dalton and Valeria Golino; and two Claude Bolling scores, LA MANDARINE and LA REVANCHIE.

Perseverance has announced two upcoming soundtrack CDs -- the original LP tracks from director Herbert Ross' amazing 1981 film version of the acclaimed Dennis Potter miniseries PENNIES FROM HEAVEN, featuring the original period recordings from the film plus some additional arrangements for the score by Marvin Hamlisch and Billy May; and Brian Ralston's score for the 2012 sports drama CROOKED ARROWS, starring former Superman Brandon Routh and directed by Steve Rash (The Buddy Holly Story, Can't Buy Me Love). 

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Next FSM ONLINE Issue Now Live!
Posted By Tim Curran 7/18/2013 - 2:00 AM
The July edition of FSM ONLINE is now live. In this issue, the cover story is an interview with RAMIN DJAWADI on his score for del Toro’s blockbuster PACIFIC RIM; HENRY JACKMAN talks TURBO; BENJAMIN WALLFISCH brings big themes to the new period drama SUMMER IN FEBRUARY; a FAR AND AWAY Score Restore; SNUFFY WALDEN is trapped UNDER THE DOME with Stephen King; percussionist EMIL RICHARDS discusses the new book on his life and times; Jon Heely, Disney’s head of music research, talks about putting together the recent Disney concerts; a special, baby-themed EAR OF THE MONTH; Cary Wong’s BROADWAY ROUND-UP; more embedded audio clips, and more.
Subscribers, you’ll get notification by email shortly. Or, just go here to log in. For those who want to join FSM ONLINE, go here, click on the “Subscribe” link and follow the instructions. And email us if you have any questions.
Your Friends at FSM ONLINE
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Aisle Seat 7-16: Shout! Summer Sizzler
Posted By Andy Dursin 7/15/2013 - 9:00 PM
If the words “we’re building a fighting force of extraordinary magnitude” mean anything to you, then chances are good that 1977′s KENTUCKY FRIED MOVIE (82 mins., 1977, R) is one of your all-time favorite comedies. At 75 minutes, this sketch-comedy epic boasts as many memorable comedic moments as any film I’ve ever seen, from a hilarious parody of “Enter the Dragon” (“A Fistful of Yen”) to satires on morning TV shows, commercials, coming attraction trailers (who will ever forget “Catholic High School Girls in Trouble” or “That’s Armageddon”?), reality- based programs (“Danger Seekers”!), and an assassination board game that – as the filmmakers point out in their commentary — makes more sense in less than three minutes than Oliver Stone’s JFK did in three hours!
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Thoughts on devotion, new Bond and new Trek
Posted By Stephen Woolston 7/12/2013 - 9:00 PM
With news that Sam Mendes is on board to direct Bond 24 (link), it's curious to note how many people are already declaring the as-yet unmade film will be brilliant or a disaster.
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Today in Film Score History:
April 20
Bebe Barron died (2008)
David Raksin begins recording his score for Kind Lady (1951)
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