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 Posted:   Nov 7, 2004 - 12:00 PM   
 By:   Valere   (Member)

http://www.audiophilia.com/features/da70.htm

Hugo is the silent conscience of the film composer. An affirmative nod from the man is worth more than all of the trinkets bestowed by the film industry. - Henry Mancini


A real worthwile look at "The Best Years of Our Lives" enjoy,all.

 
 Posted:   Nov 7, 2004 - 1:18 PM   
 By:   Dana Wilcox   (Member)

http://www.audiophilia.com/features/da70.htm

Hugo is the silent conscience of the film composer. An affirmative nod from the man is worth more than all of the trinkets bestowed by the film industry. - Henry Mancini


A real worthwile look at "The Best Years of Our Lives" enjoy,all.


Wonderful article, and a worthy tribute to a man who contributed so much of value to the (dying) art of scoring films. Should be required reading!

 
 Posted:   Nov 7, 2004 - 2:46 PM   
 By:   Valere   (Member)

Thanks, Dana, I hope that more read this!

 
 
 Posted:   Nov 7, 2004 - 4:52 PM   
 By:   haineshisway   (Member)

Eric Paddon, come on down! If this article doesn't make you want to a) finally see The Best Years of our Lives, or b) want to hear its score, then nothing will.

Hugo Friedhofer WAS a giant. I have never heard a Friedhofer score that was less than wonderful, and several of them are thoroughly entrenched in greatness. My favorite besides Best Years is One Eyed Jacks, but I love his score for Rains of Ranchipur, his fantastic noir scores to Billy Wilder's Ace in the Hole, Cy Endfield's Try and Get Me (a great movie), and Violent Saturday. Also love The Young Lions, and even his score to William Castle's mighty strange Homicidal.

 
 
 Posted:   Nov 7, 2004 - 6:05 PM   
 By:   manderley   (Member)

.....Hugo Friedhofer WAS a giant. I have never heard a Friedhofer score that was less than wonderful, and several of them are thoroughly entrenched in greatness. My favorite besides Best Years is One Eyed Jacks, but I love his score for Rains of Ranchipur, his fantastic noir scores to Billy Wilder's Ace in the Hole, Cy Endfield's Try and Get Me (a great movie), and Violent Saturday. Also love The Young Lions, and even his score to William Castle's mighty strange Homicidal.....


Haineshisway is correct.

I've never heard a bad Friedhofer score either.
Among my other favorites he didn't mention are SEVEN CITIES OF GOLD, SOLDIER OF FORTUNE, THE REVOLT OF MAMIE STOVER, LYDIA BAILEY, ENCHANTMENT, JOAN OF ARC, NO MAN OF HER OWN, and THE BANDIT OF SHERWOOD FOREST.

Everyone must always keep in mind that if you've heard any of the major scores by Korngold and Steiner, you've heard Friedhofer's orchestration work, and if you've heard things like Newman's PRISONER OF ZENDA and MARK OF ZORRO, MY FRIEND FLICKA, etc, you've heard pieces of Friedhofer's uncredited compositional work. Surely in the history of Golden Age Hollywood, virtually every major studio music department (Paramount, Fox, MGM, Columbia, WB, RKO, United Artists, Goldwyn)and nearly every composer came in film-music contact with Hugo at one time or another.

 
 
 Posted:   Nov 7, 2004 - 6:46 PM   
 By:   cinemel1   (Member)



Wonderful article, and a worthy tribute to a man who contributed so much of value to the (dying) art of scoring films. Should be required reading!


Dana, I knew the article would be interesting if you liked it. Of course, I'm going right downstairs to pull out the Entr'acte Best Years CD. It's definitely due a listen. My first contact with Friedhofer was The Young Lions, another powerful WWII related score. I sought out his other compositions after buying the LP to Young Lions when the film was released. I wore the vinyl out and was glad when the CD was
issued.

 
 
 Posted:   Nov 7, 2004 - 8:47 PM   
 By:   Rozsaphile   (Member)

Friedhofer's quip (below) is indeed witty. But does the writer get the joke? I'm not at all clear what this has to do with the technique of film music or the sophistication of film producers. Did something get lost in translation here?

"Indeed Friedhofer, among the later generation of film composers who revered him, was almost as well known for his wit as for his musicianship. It was he who offered the advice to his composition class, "a proper score for The Hunchback of Notre Dame should be quasi-modal" -- an eternally relevant judgment on both the technique of film music and the level of musical sophistication of almost all film producers."

 
 
 Posted:   Nov 7, 2004 - 9:04 PM   
 By:   manderley   (Member)

.....Friedhofer's quip (below) is indeed witty. But does the writer get the joke? I'm not at all clear what this has to do with the technique of film music or the sophistication of film producers. Did something get lost in translation here?

"Indeed Friedhofer, among the later generation of film composers who revered him, was almost as well known for his wit as for his musicianship. It was he who offered the advice to his composition class, "a proper score for The Hunchback of Notre Dame should be quasi-modal" -- an eternally relevant judgment on both the technique of film music and the level of musical sophistication of almost all film producers.".....



I think you're right about this, Rozsaphile.

It seems to me the value judgment of the writer would more probably relate to the other often-told Friedhofer story about the French Horns and English Horns in the score for a Napoleon/Waterloo-themed film.

 
 Posted:   Nov 7, 2004 - 11:13 PM   
 By:   Dana Wilcox   (Member)

Eric Paddon, come on down! If this article doesn't make you want to a) finally see The Best Years of our Lives, or b) want to hear its score, then nothing will.

Don't waste your breath. Paddon's much too busy watching re-runs of I Led Three Lives...

 
 
 Posted:   Nov 8, 2004 - 1:12 AM   
 By:   Howard L   (Member)

The simplicity of approach has another concomitant benefit, besides unifying the score. When Friedhofer is called upon to try something virtuosic, it REALLY stands out. Such is the case with the great penultimate scene at the plane graveyard. A despairing Fred Derry walks among the fighters and bombers in which he has found the sole meaning of his life so far. The planes are disabled, their engines and propellers gone. They are now as useless as Fred feels. His friend Homer and the planes have lost their limbs. Fred, though, IS lost. The scene has no dialog, no real drama. Yet it is among the greatest scenes in film annals. Wyler's direction is staggering, Dana Andrews' silent performance gripping. But it is Hugo Friedhofer who makes the scene indelible. In fact there is no sound, save some almost inaudible rustlings, but Friedhofer's music. In the music, in the brass dirge, the relentless tread of the orchestra, we are made to feel even for these mute mechanical monstrosities. In the music, we hear Fred reliving the horrific scenes of war. In the music, as Fred contemplates life from which the glory has departed, we see the hope die in his eyes. And then catharsis: As Fred sits lost in memory in the cockpit of a bomber's corpse, suddenly the cacophony of war is pierced by a nearby voice. Friedhofer's music -- the musical rat-a-tat and engine roar have been for some seconds the only sound we hear -- suddenly breaks off. We are left with the high strings suspended, alone. Fred, whom we now see separated from reality through the clouded, scratched window of the cockpit, is back on the ground. His war is over. But after the war and the music fade away, to the nostalgic tribute of a distant muted trumpet, Fred finds his future. The planes which were once his life are to become prefab houses. He has a job. He has a hope. Sword has become ploughshare.

Bravo.

 
 
 Posted:   Nov 8, 2004 - 2:52 AM   
 By:   buysoundtrax   (Member)

delete

 
 Posted:   Nov 8, 2004 - 5:14 AM   
 By:   Ron Pulliam   (Member)

And while the subject is the genius of Friedhofer, do not forget that one of his finest accomplishments -- "The Bishop's Wife" -- is still available on CD and is totally wonderful.

True, it's missing some choral overlays, but Friedhofer's gorgeous score shines through. The cue for the first dinner table sequence (Niven and Young dining alone)is one of the best-scored scenes in any film I've seen.

Friedhofer is totally brilliant.

 
 
 Posted:   Nov 8, 2004 - 4:02 PM   
 By:   haineshisway   (Member)



Don't waste your breath. Paddon's much too busy watching re-runs of I Led Three Lives...


Apparently so. Shameful.

 
 
 Posted:   Nov 9, 2004 - 5:25 AM   
 By:   Heiko Heinrichs   (Member)

As I can`t play any NTSC-Code-One DVDs, I don’t have the DVD of „Joan of Arc“. But I found an old audio tape with Friedhofer’s wonderful Prelude to the film, which I had transferred from a VHS-Tape some 15 years ago. What a great music – and totally lost! My greatest wish concerning CDs is a re-construction and re-recording of this score, which is for me one of the greatest music for an epic film. And I won’t get tired to mention this… ;-)

 
 
 Posted:   Nov 9, 2004 - 10:01 AM   
 By:   Joe Caps   (Member)

Be careful of your tapeof Joan of Arc- if you taped it from the unrestored version you have a REDONE Main Title that is short. If you see the restored version, it's a different piece of music and one of the longest Main titles of that era.

 
 Posted:   Nov 10, 2004 - 1:04 AM   
 By:   Valere   (Member)

I'm glad that you tuned in and took the time to check it out! Hope that you all enjoyed it. cinemel1 , when you have a minute, please drop me a note at vvautier@lycos.com Thanks. And Howard L, that WAS the paragraph that did it for me in that review. "spot on" for sure.

 
 
 Posted:   Sep 2, 2022 - 9:56 AM   
 By:   Night   (Member)

I am curious, does anyone here know of any quotes from well-known composers, legends, musicans or musicologists on Hugo Friedhofer? I have a vague memory of reading somewhere that Friedhofer's score to The Best Years of Our Lives was André Previn's favorite film score of all time, but I could be mistaken. It would have been interesting to know Previn's thoughts on Friedhofer.

I know David Raksin's thoughts on Friedhofer in this interview he did with him in the 1970s: https://soundcloud.com/jim-quackenbush/friedhofer-interview-1/s-ku6yP

I also know of Henry Mancini's quote on Friedhofer: "Hugo is the silent conscience of the film composer. An affirmative nod from the man is worth more than all of the trinkets bestowed by the film industry."

It would have been interesting to know what other legends thought of him.

 
 
 Posted:   Sep 2, 2022 - 11:35 AM   
 By:   Howard L   (Member)

from Music By MAX STEINER

“In all of Hollywood, no one moved between composition and orchestrating for others with less ego than Hugo Friedhofer.” —author Steven C. Smith

“‘If he’s good enough for Korngold, he’s good enough for me.’” —Max Steiner

“‘...the most learned of us all and often the most subtle...’” —David Raksin

 
 Posted:   Sep 2, 2022 - 12:41 PM   
 By:   Dana Wilcox   (Member)

http://www.audiophilia.com/features/da70.htm

Sadly, Valere's link no longer takes us anywhere... Anybody know if this article is still posted somewhere? If so, kindly share that with us here... Much appreciated!

(My love of Friedhofer the man and of his transcendent compositions of course remains undiminished through the years.)

 
 Posted:   Sep 2, 2022 - 12:44 PM   
 By:   Justin Boggan   (Member)

It's on Archive.org
https://web.archive.org/web/20061019182058/http://www.audiophilia.com/features/da70.htm

 
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