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Aisle Seat 12-15: Holiday Gift Guide
Posted By Andy Dursin 12/14/2015 - 9:00 PM
Physical media might be – as the media keeps reminding us – on the downswing but there are still loads of great new releases across both the Blu-Ray and DVD formats to appease any movie buff this holiday season. Here’s a quick guide to both newly-released titles and yuletide-centric offerings for the casual viewer and genre-specific aficionado.
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Film Score Friday 12/11/15
Posted By Scott Bettencourt 12/10/2015 - 9:00 PM
Intrada has announced four new releases to close out 2015.

Billy Wilder's 1944 film version of James M. Cain's classic novel Double Indemnity is one of the pivotal films in the history of film noir, and received seven Oscar nominations including Best Picture and one for the original score by Miklos Rozsa, whose work on the film helped establish him as a top noir composer. Intrada's new two-disc set DOUBLE INDEMNITY: FILM NOIR AT PARAMOUNT brings together surviving score tracks from seven Paramount thrillers from the 1940s and '50s -- Rozsa's DOUBLE INDEMNITY, with 38 minutes of music; Wilder's cult classic journalism melodrama ACE IN THE HOLE, whose score by Hugo Friedhofer was short-listed for an Oscar nomination; Franz Waxman's music for the film expansion of Lucille Fletcher's classic radio play SORRY, WRONG NUMBER; William Wyler's 1955 THE DESPERATE HOURS, with cues by original composer Gail Kubik (some dropped from the final film, which ultimately dialed out most of his contribution) as well as an additional cue by Daniele Amfitheatrof; Leith Stevens' music for director Michael Curtiz' little seen THE SCARLET HOUR, featuring the great Elaine Stritch in her film debut; Heinz Romheld's uncredited music for UNION STATION, reteaming Sunset Blvd. stars William Holden and Nancy Olson; and 29 minutes of music from Victor Young's I WALK ALONE, the first teaming of Kirk Douglas and Burt Lancaster.

Director Jack Clayton hired his frequent collaborator Georges Delerue for the lavish, Disney-produced 1983 film version of Ray Bradbury's fantasy classic SOMETHING WICKED THIS WAY COMES, and while Delerue's score entirely dropped during the lengthy post-production period (replaced by a new score by James Horner which Bradbury loved), Intrada's 74-minute CD features the complete Delerue score as well as alternates and source cues (the label previously released Horner's score).

Christopher Young scored the 2014 Chinese fantasy action-adventure THE MONKEY KING starring Donnie Yen and Chow Yun-Fat, and Intrada's soundtrack CD features 73 minutes of his music.

Tim Burton's romantic fantasy EDWARD SCISSORHANDS featured one of Danny Elfman's most gorgeous and popular scores, and Intrada's expanded release of Elfman's music comes as the film celebrates its 25th anniversary.

La-La Land has just released the soundtrack to the hit Christmas horror comedy KRAMPUS, starring Adam Scott, Toni Colette and Allison Tolman, with music by Douglas Pipes (Monster House, Trick 'r' Treat).

The latest release from Kritzerland pairs two scores by Georges Delerue previously released on separate CDs by Intrada -- writer-director James Toback's 1987 romantic comedy THE PICK-UP ARTIST, pairing Molly Ringwald and Robert Downey Jr. (only 21 when the movie was filmed), and the 1965 drama RAPTURE, with Melvyn Douglas, Dean Stockwell, and Sundays and Cybele child star Patricia Gozzi.

On January 15, Varese Sarabande will release the soundtrack to REMEMBER, the 13th(!) Atom Egoyan movie scored by Oscar winner Mychael Danna.

Quartet is expected to announce their final soundtrack releases of 2015 next week.

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Aisle Seat 12-8: Kino Classics, Ant Man, MI:5
Posted By Andy Dursin 12/7/2015 - 9:00 PM
Kino Lorber’s Studio Classics Blu-Ray line boasts a number of exciting new releases this December, including a pair of sequels that have flown under the radar since their original release, one of the most acclaimed foreign films from the late 1980s, and a mid ‘70s American-International cult classic featuring a voluptuous, pre-Wonder Woman Lynda Carter.
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Film Score Friday 12/4/15
Posted By Scott Bettencourt 12/3/2015 - 9:00 PM
La-La Land has announced their latest batch of "Black Friday" releases -- a two-disc, greatly expanded release of 1990 Best Picture winner DANCES WITH WOLVES, for which John Barry won his fifth and final Oscar; a two-disc, greatly expanded release of 1995 Best Picture winner BRAVEHEART, for which James Horner's score competed against his own Apollo 13 for an Oscar (but lost to Luis Bacalov; Horner would win two years for that ocean liner movie); a two-disc, greatly expanded release of Dimitri Tiomkin's Oscar-nominated score for George Stevens' family epic GIANT; James Horner's score for the 1994 animated/live action fantasy THE PAGEMASTER, remastered and with some additional cues; and a two-disc anniversary issue of John Williams' Oscar-nominated HOME ALONE, including the complete score, previously unreleased music, and the original soundtrack sequencing.

Intrada will be announcing their final CDs for 2015 next Monday. Odds are that none of them will be soundtracks from the Jaws films.

Music Box is releasing for the first time the soundtrack to director John Frankenheimer's final film, the heist thriller REINDEER GAMES, with music by Alan Silvestri (the project was originally announced to be scored by Frankenheimer's long-time collaborator Jerry Goldsmith). They are also releasing Laurent Eyquem's score for ENGRAGES, the remake of Mario Bava's Rabid Dogs, and re-releasing their expanded edition of Ennio Morricone's LOLITA.

Kritzerland is releasing VICTOR YOUNG AT PARAMOUNT, VOL. 2, featuring music from four of Young's scores - The Proud and Profane, Forever Female, Little Boy Lost and My Favorite Spy

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Aisle Seat 12-1: December Arrival Edition
Posted By Andy Dursin 11/30/2015 - 9:00 PM
The stylish, beautifully scored, and exceptionally well-photographed adaptation of Peter Straub’s sensational novel GHOST STORY (***, 110 mins., 1981, R; Shout Factory) manages to capture just enough of the essence of Straub’s novel to make it a recommended view. An instant bestseller, Straub’s book was quickly gobbled up, prior to its publication by Universal Pictures, hoping to turn the property into the next high-class studio genre exercise like “The Exorcist” or “The Omen.” The result was a flawed but entertaining adaptation of its source, which works best if you distance yourself from Straub’s novel and accept it as a standalone cinematic tale of the supernatural, presented by a peerless cast and crew.
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Film Score Friday 11/27/15
Posted By Scott Bettencourt 11/26/2015 - 9:00 PM
La-La Land is announcing their latest group of "Black Friday" releases today. They are currently planned to include four 2-disc sets and one single-disc release, and will be available to order beginning next Tuesday at noon.

I am currently on vacation, so if any important film music news has broken in the last few days, I will rely on you to tell each other, perhaps through the Message Board to the right of this column.

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Aisle Seat 11-24: The Thanksgiving Edition
Posted By Andy Dursin 11/23/2015 - 9:00 PM
An exciting Fox Cinemascope western, a superb Jane Austen rendering from Ang Lee, a ‘70s political-conspiracy thriller, and vintage efforts by filmmakers Woody Allen and Ken Loach comprise Twilight Time’s varied Blu-Ray limited-editions for the month of November.
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Film Score Friday 11/20/15
Posted By Scott Bettencourt 11/19/2015 - 9:00 PM
This week's release from Intrada is a deluxe, two-disc edition of one of the most popular films and film scores of all time -- Steven Spielberg's superlative entertainment JAWS, whose John Williams score is one of the undying classics of movie music and helped to make its composer a household name. The score has received several CD incarnations -- a release of the original LP tracks, a complete release of the score tracks, and a Varese re-recording of the complete score. The Intrada edition includes the original LP tracks, a remastered version of the complete score tracks (including the unused cue for a major character's death), 15 minutes of previously unreleased alternates and several source tracks. The liner notes recounting the film's famously difficult production history were written by me.

The latest LP to CD release in Varese Sarabande's limited edition subscription series is SISTER SISTER, the 1988 psychological thriller starring Jennifer Jason Leigh, Eric Stoltz and Judith Ivey. The film was the feature directing debut of Bill Condon, the Oscar-winning screenwriter whose eclectic directing resume includes Candyman: Farewell to the Flesh, Gods and Monsters, Kinsey, Dreamgirls, the final two Twilight films, The Fifth Estate, Mr. Holmes and the upcoming live-action remake of Disney's Beauty and the Beast. The music was composed by Richard Einhorn, whose other scores include Shock Waves and Dead of Winter, though he's best known as a concert composer whose works include Voices of Light, composed to be performed to screenings of The Passion of Joan of Arc.

As part of their 1985 tribute, the label is releasing their recent re-recording 1985 AT THE MOVIES as a stand-alone CD on December 4. And continuing that theme, their latest CD Club releases are a re-release of Elmer Bernstein's wonderful SPIES LIKE US score, and a disc of highlights from Bill Conti's epic NORTH AND SOUTH, previously released as a four-disc set.

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The November Issue of FSM ONLINE Is Live!
Posted By Tim Curran 11/19/2015 - 2:00 AM
The November edition of FSM ONLINE is now live. This month's cover stories are a trio of awards-season treats: CARTER BURWELL makes us fall for CAROL; MICHAEL BROOK sets sail for BROOKLYN; and THEODORE SHAPIRO testifies on behalf of TRUMBO. Also this issue, enter deep waters with Mike Matessino for Intrada's JAWS releases; an interview with CRAIG ARMSTRONG about his score to the monstrous VICTOR FRANKENSTEIN; GEORGE FENTON and pianist CLARE HAMMOND chat about THE LADY IN THE VAN; Cary Wong’s annual HOLIDAY GIFT GUIDE; discover an alternate history with DOMINIC LEWIS and Amazon’s new series, THE MAN IN THE HIGH CASTLE; a review of the London concert premiere of STAR TREK: THE ULTIMATE VOYAGE; AUSTIN WINTORY tackles ASSASSIN’S CREED SYNDICATE; a look at Berklee College of Music’s new score to NOSFERATU, featuring Boston Pops maestro KEITH LOCKHART; 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 11-17: Kino Lorber Studio Classics & More
Posted By Andy Dursin 11/16/2015 - 9:00 PM
No label has output as much catalog content for film buffs on Blu-Ray over the last couple of years as Kino Lorber. Their attractively packaged Studio Classics releases, often re-using original poster art, have mostly been comprised of titles from the vast MGM library, bringing high-def owners starved for archival content a wealth of titles from the ‘30s and ‘40s as well as the relatively recent past. That recipe has served the label well, as it does again this month with five fascinating titles hailing from a handful of eras across the filmmaking spectrum.
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Today in Film Score History:
June 29
Bernard Herrmann born (1911)
Bert Shefter died (1999)
Daniele Amfitheatrof begins recording his score for The Painted Hills (1950)
Joseph Carl Breil born (1870)
Mischa Spoliansky died (1985)
Ralph Burns born (1922)
Ulpio Minucci born (1917)
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