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 Posted:   Aug 9, 2022 - 10:45 AM   
 By:   Sean Nethery   (Member)

There is no date I can find on the internet to confirm when The Equalizer was written, but it is obvious to me that Spence copied Mancini not the other way around.

The Lifeforce theme has a lot of Mancini's fingerprints on it even if it isn't typical for him. And the Spence is a measure for measure pastiche.

Plus of course the title must be an appropriation of The Equalizer tv show which launched around the same time (fall of 1985 - after Lifeforce was released) - so hardly likely that Spence came first, but appropriated after the music was released. As it is a perfect number for sports montages, but who wants to pay the royalties?

Which is typical for NFL music and library music generally.

By the way, I'm not criticizing Spence, I'm sure he was told to do this by the powers that were.

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 9, 2022 - 10:55 AM   
 By:   Jameson281   (Member)

Going through the cue sheet, there are 27 cues credited to Kamen. The runtime for two cues aren't listed, but the others add up to 27:26.

 
 Posted:   Aug 9, 2022 - 11:40 AM   
 By:   Mike Esssss   (Member)

There is no date I can find on the internet to confirm when The Equalizer was written, but it is obvious to me that Spence copied Mancini not the other way around.

The Lifeforce theme has a lot of Mancini's fingerprints on it even if it isn't typical for him. And the Spence is a measure for measure pastiche.

Plus of course the title must be an appropriation of The Equalizer tv show which launched around the same time (fall of 1985 - after Lifeforce was released) - so hardly likely that Spence came first, but appropriated after the music was released. As it is a perfect number for sports montages, but who wants to pay the royalties?

Which is typical for NFL music and library music generally.

By the way, I'm not criticizing Spence, I'm sure he was told to do this by the powers that were.


This explanation certainly would make sense, and nor was I looking to criticize or exalt one composer or the other. The Spence just has an older sound to it that I always associated with the 70's era of NFL Films (carried over from westerns). You're probably right, though I'm really curious if anyone around here knows for sure. Lukas?

 
 Posted:   Aug 9, 2022 - 11:43 AM   
 By:   Lukas Kendall   (Member)


Sam Spence would often create "soundalikes" of popular film themes for NFL Films, going as far back as this one...



I remember there’s also a pretty blatant "homage" to The Last Starfighter from the mid to late 1980s.

Lukas

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 9, 2022 - 11:44 AM   
 By:   henry   (Member)

Funny, the other day I was watching an episode of KING OF QUEENS where Doug was playing in a football game and they played what I thought was Mancini's LIFEFORCE theme and I was wondering why would they play that, but I just realized it must have been the Spence theme.

 
 Posted:   Aug 9, 2022 - 12:08 PM   
 By:   Yavar Moradi   (Member)

Going through the cue sheet, there are 27 cues credited to Kamen. The runtime for two cues aren't listed, but the others add up to 27:26.

That's probably cues that are in the film, right? But what if Kamen wrote/recorded more music than actually made it into the film?

Yavar

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 9, 2022 - 12:27 PM   
 By:   Jameson281   (Member)

Going through the cue sheet, there are 27 cues credited to Kamen. The runtime for two cues aren't listed, but the others add up to 27:26.

That's probably cues that are in the film, right? But what if Kamen wrote/recorded more music than actually made it into the film?


Correct; he may well have recorded more cues, alternate versions, longer versions, etc. Lots of possibilities for additional music.

 
 Posted:   Aug 9, 2022 - 12:34 PM   
 By:   Yavar Moradi   (Member)

It's kinda crazy to think that the composer of Breakfast at Tiffany's and the composer of Lethal Weapon both contributed original music to a trashy sci-fi vampire movie in the 1980s... isn't it?

And even more of a strange thing to contemplate that many years later each of them was musically involved in the birth of the X-Men franchise (Kamen with one of his final scores before his untimely death, and Mancini posthumously, thanks to aforementioned trashy sci-fi vampire movie score...) wink

Yavar

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 9, 2022 - 12:43 PM   
 By:   SJT69   (Member)

I actually rather adore 'Lifeforce' as a movie, it's a hell of a lot of fun and dare I say I find it somewhat compelling and atmospheric. I'd happily watch it any day over the aforementioned 'Breakfast at Tiffany's' and 'Lethal Weapon'..! (both rather trashy too in their own way)

 
 Posted:   Aug 9, 2022 - 12:57 PM   
 By:   Yavar Moradi   (Member)

Fair enough! Certainly elements of Breakfast at Tiffany’s are among the trashiest on film…

Yavar

 
 Posted:   Aug 9, 2022 - 1:10 PM   
 By:   Sean Nethery   (Member)

....and nor was I looking to criticize or exalt one composer or the other.

Mike, I didn't think you were, I just felt like I was sounding harsh towards Spence, which I didn't mean to do. It's just the job he was told to do, as Lukas demonstrated. That's what I meant about library music, so often capturing someone else's lightning in their new/old bottles.

I think the Spence version sounds older just because of a thin ensemble and nasty audio recording practices. Good enough for mono TV sets, though!

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 9, 2022 - 1:22 PM   
 By:   Nicholas_DW   (Member)

I've only ever seen the Mancini version of the movie and never connected with Kamen's material on the BSX set. I wonder how much Kamen wrote in total. Less than a week to find out!

 
 Posted:   Aug 9, 2022 - 1:23 PM   
 By:   SchiffyM   (Member)

This movie is one of our favorite guilty pleasures. We still watch it every few years. (The original cut, not the American edit we first saw.) I won't argue that it's a great film, but it is a hoot!

I didn't mean to glibly write it off! I saw it on cable when it first came on and haven't revisited. Nor am I likely to. But enjoy!

 
 Posted:   Aug 9, 2022 - 2:25 PM   
 By:   spook   (Member)

I loved LIFEFORCE when I first saw it in the cinema and still love it to this day. Apart from some truly ridiculous dialogue ( “if you come to me it’ll be much less terrifying” … lol!) the whole thing is just a blast and never boring. So it’s not high art but who cares…it’s fun!
I so remember that bit with the energy ball charging through the underground tunnel ‘collecting’ life with Mancini’s music thundering away. Even then in the cinema it was such an experience and a painful wait till the soundtrack came out so I could play it to death. It’s still one of my most played tracks. I bought the LP. I bought the Japanese CD. I bought the BSX release and I’ll be definately buying this. Michael Kamen is one of my two favourite composers but I have to admit his stuff in this is more curiosity value than anything else.

 
 Posted:   Aug 9, 2022 - 2:45 PM   
 By:   danbeck   (Member)

I loved LIFEFORCE when I first saw it in the cinema and still love it to this day. Apart from some truly ridiculous dialogue ( “if you come to me it’ll be much less terrifying” … lol!) the whole thing is just a blast and never boring. So it’s not high art but who cares…it’s fun!
I so remember that bit with the energy ball charging through the underground tunnel ‘collecting’ life with Mancini’s music thundering away. Even then in the cinema it was such an experience and a painful wait till the soundtrack came out so I could play it to death. It’s still one of my most played tracks. I bought the LP. I bought the Japanese CD. I bought the BSX release and I’ll be definately buying this. Michael Kamen is one of my two favourite composers but I have to admit his stuff in this is more curiosity value than anything else.


This movie is really something. I wonder who was crazy enought to green light it at Canon!
It starts as an space sci-fi mystery, then a slow chase for the alien on the run with hints of The Thing (who's infected?) then, out of the blue, it goes into full Zombie/Vampire apocalipse in London! I never tire of watching it for its over the top craziness, the great special effects, the gorgeous Mathilda May and Mancini's score. The longer cut with his score is the version to watch.
I love Michael Kamen but Mancini's music is soo much better here!

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 9, 2022 - 3:46 PM   
 By:   Jameson281   (Member)


This movie is really something. I wonder who was crazy enought to green light it at Canon!


Did Canon make any movies that were't crazy? I guess there were a few, but "crazy" was pretty much an integral part of their business model.

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 10, 2022 - 12:32 AM   
 By:   CindyLover   (Member)


This movie is really something. I wonder who was crazy enought to green light it at Canon!


Did Canon make any movies that were't crazy? I guess there were a few, but "crazy" was pretty much an integral part of their business model.


They made cameras and printers, not movies.

These guys made movies. (Lifeforce itself the supplies the one at 1:25.)

 
 Posted:   Aug 10, 2022 - 1:11 AM   
 By:   Nicolai P. Zwar   (Member)



They made cameras and printers, not movies.


That is true, they still do, very good ones I might add. (Canon & Nikon are the two big traditional camera manufacturers in Japan, both very good at what they do.) Funny side fact: Marvel's THE AVENGERS was shot with a bunch of different cameras, including parts of it with a Canon EOS-7D, which is the camera I am using when not shooting with my smartphone.

 
 Posted:   Aug 10, 2022 - 1:19 AM   
 By:   No Respectable Gentleman   (Member)

If you pay extra Mathilda May delivers your copy in the nude.

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 10, 2022 - 3:40 AM   
 By:   CindyLover   (Member)

If you pay extra Mathilda May delivers your copy in the nude.

Or if you prefer, Steve Railsback delivers it and French-kisses you on delivery. Regardless of how you identify.

 
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