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La-La Land has announced their schedule of releases for February.

This week they are releasing the score to Orson Welles' decades-in-completion film THE OTHER SIDE OF THE WIND, composed by the late Michel Legrand, who personally selected the cues for this release before his passing; and a multi-disc edition (shipping next week) of Hans Zimmer's most critically acclaimed (and arguably finest) score, for director Terrence Malick's 1998 WWII epic THE THIN RED LINE, featuring the full score plus alternates on two discs, the original CD sequencing on Disc Three, and the 1999 album Chants from The Thin Red Line on Disc Four.

The week of February 19 they will release a CD featuring Jerry Goldsmith's never-before-released music from the short-lived 1975 mystery TV series ARCHER, in which Brian Keith played Ross MacDonald's detective character Lew Archer (who became "Lew Harper" for the Paul Newman films Harper and The Drowning Pool), paired with a re-release (from improved sources) of Goldsmith's score for the 1967 mystery-thriller WARNING SHOT.
Intrada plans to release one new CD next week.
The latest soundtrack CD release from Kritzerland features Jerome Moross's score for director Otto Preminger's religious drama THE CARDINAL, a remastered version of the same cues previously released on LP and CD, plus a more pop-ish version of the main title theme.
In last Friday's column, we (well, I) erroneously reported that Varese Sarabande would release three new CD Club discs this week. While they are expected to release three discs this month, no specific release date has been anounced at the time of this writing. 

The Baby
 - Gerald Fried - Caldera
Calypso/Italia '61 in Circarama
 - Angelo Francesco Lavagnino - Alhambra
Cannibal Holocaust - Riz Ortolani - Beat
Deux Hommes Dans La Ville/Le Toubib/La Verve Couderc
 - Philippe Sarde - Music Box
Duri a Morire
 - Stelvio Cipriani - Digitmovies
The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part - Mark Mothersbaugh - WaterTower [CD-R]

The Other Side of the Wind - Michel Legrand - La-La Land
The Prodigy - Joseph Bishara - Sony [CD-R]
La Professora Di Lingue
 - Lallo Gori - Beat
Simon Bolivar 
- Carlo Savina - Digitmovies
We the Animals - Nick Zammuto - Temporary Residence

The Amityville Murders - Dana Kaproff
Beneath the Leaves - Attila Fodor
Berlin, I Love You - David Hason
Cold Pursuit - George Fenton
The Divorce Party - Chloe Grace Baker
High Flying Bird - David Wilder Savage [Thomas Newman]
The Isle - Tom Kane
The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part - Mark Mothersbaugh - Score CD-R on WaterTower
The Man Who Killed Hitler and Then the Bigfoot - Joe Kraemer
Pinsky - Sasha Papernik
The Prodigy - Joseph Bishara - Score CD-R on Sony
St. Agatha - Mark Sayfritz
Under the Eiffel Tower - Joseph Stephens
Untogether - Robin Foster
A Violent Man - Peter G. Adams
What Men Want - Brian Tyler


February 15
Alita: Battle Angel
 - Tom Holkenborg - Milan
- Joseph Trapanese - Sony (Import)
The Thin Red Line
- Hans Zimmer - La-La Land
February 22
Archer/Warning Shot - Jerry Goldsmith - La-La Land
Free Solo - Marco Beltrami - Node
March 1
Colette - Thomas Ades - Lakeshore
Dorian Gray - Charlie Mole - Filmtrax
March 8
If Beale Street Could Talk - Nicholas Britell - Lakeshore
Ittefaq - BT - Kss3te Recordings
March 22
The Beach Bum - John Debney - Milan
Date Unknown
Arthur Gesetz
- Christophe Blaser - Kronos
Bajo La Piel Del Lobo
- Paloma Penarrubia - Rosetta
Bunuel in the Labyrinth of the Turtles
- Arturo Cardelus - Rosetta
The Cardinal
- Jerome Moross - Kritzerland
Dead Ant
 - Edwin Wendler - Notefornote
Documentales: A Documentary Collection
- Ivan Palomares - Rosetta
For the Term of His Natural Life/The Wild Duck
 - Simon Walker - Dragon's Domain
Grace a Dieu
- Sacha & Evengui Galperine - Music Box
The House that Dripped Blood
 - Michael Dress - Kritzerland
The Housemaid
- Jerome Leroy - Rosetta
The Hyper Agent Gridman
 - Osamu Tozuka, Kisaburo Suzuki - Cinema-Kan (import)
Josef Mengele: The Final Account 
- Joe Harnell - Dragon's Domain
Le Gran Promesa
- Rodrigo Flores Lopez - Kronos
Petrole! Petrole!/Le Borreau Des Cours/C'est Dur Pour Tout Le Monde
- Eric Demarsan - Music Box
Quando Los Angeles Duermen
- Pablo Cervantes - Rosetta
- Sergio Jimenez Lacia - Rosetta
Superman - John Williams - La-La Land
Twelve Students Who Want to Die
 - Yukihiko Tsutsumi - VAP (import)
Valley of Shadows
 - Zbigniew Preisner - Caldera
Wish You Were Here
- Andre Matthias - Kronos


February 8 - John Williams born (1932)
February 8 - Joe Raposo born (1937)
February 8 - Johnny Mandel records his score for Drums of Africa (1963) 
February 8 - Alan Elliott born (1964)
February 8 - Planet of the Apes opens in New York (1968)
February 8 - Lalo Schifrin begins recording his score for Earth II (1971)
February 8 - David Bell records his score for the Star Trek: Voyager episode “Dark Frontier, Part II” (1999)
February 8 - Akira Ifukube died (2006)
February 9 - Jean Constantin born (1923)
February 9 - Barry Mann born (1939)
February 9 - Alfred Newman begins recording his score for The Counterfeit Traitor (1962)
February 9 - Gregory Tripi born (1975)
February 9 - Percy Faith died (1976)
February 9 - Jean-Claude Petit begins recording his score for The Return of the Musketeers (1989)
February 9 - Jay Chattaway records his score for the Star Trek: Deep Space Nine episode “One Little Ship” (1998)
February 9 - Dennis McCarthy and Kevin Kiner record their score for the Star Trek: Enterprise episode “Doctor’s Orders” (2004)
February 9 - Johann Johannsson died (2018)
February 10 - Larry Adler born (1914)
February 10 - Gordon Zahler born (1926)
February 10 - Jerry Goldsmith born (1929)
February 10 - Billy Goldenberg born (1936)
February 10 - Nathan Van Cleave records his score for The Space Children (1958)
February 10 - Bruce Broughton records his score for the Buck Rogers in the 25th Century episode “The Golden Man” (1981)
February 10 - Jay Chattaway records his score for the Star Trek: Deep Space Nine episode “By Inferno’s Light” (1997)
February 10 - Velton Ray Bunch records his score for the Star Trek: Enterprise episode “Affliction” (2005)
February 11 - Recording sessions begin for Leigh Harline's score for The Desert Rats (1953)
February 11 - Bernard Herrmann records his score for the Alfred  Hitchcock Hour episode “Wally the Beard” (1964)
February 11 - Dave Grusin’s score for The Wild Wild West episode “The Night of the Puppeteer” is recorded (1966)
February 11 - Richard Markowitz records his score for the Mission: Impossible episode “The Bunker” (1969)
February 11 - Mike Shinoda born (1977)
February 11 - Heinz Roemheld died (1985)
February 11 - Don Davis begins recording his score for The Matrix Reloaded (2003)
February 12 - Howard Blake born (1938)
February 12 - Bill Laswell born (1955)
February 12 - George Antheil died (1959)
February 12 - Benjamin Frankel died (1973)
February 12 - Lalo Schifrin begins recording his score for Sky Riders (1976)
February 12 - Bruce Broughton begins recording his score for The Rescue (1988)
February 12 - John Williams begins recording his score for A.I. Artificial Intelligence (2001)
February 12 - Dennis McCarthy begins recording his scores for the Star Trek: Voyager episodes “Workforce, Parts I & II” (2001)
February 12 - Marco Beltrami begins recording his score for Hellboy (2004)
February 12 - George Aliceson Tipton died (2016)
February 13 - Lennie Hayton born (1908)
February 13 - Erik Nordgren born (1913)
February 13 - Fred Karger born (1916)
February 13 - Nino Oliviero born (1918)
February 13 - Gerald Fried born (1928)
February 13 - Peter Gabriel born (1950)
February 13 - W.G. Snuffy Walden born (1950)
February 13 - William Axt died (1959)
February 13 - Joseph Mullendore records his score for the Lost in Space episode "Junkyard in Space" (1968)
February 13 - Fred Myrow begins recording score to Soylent Green (1973)
February 13 - Jerry Fielding begins recording his score for Funeral Home (1980)
February 13 - Paul Baillargeon records his score for the Star Trek: Voyager episode “Lifesigns” (1996)
February 13 - Brian Tyler records his score for the Enterprise episode “Canamar” (2003)
February 14 - Werner Heymann born (1886)
February 14 - Elliot Lawrence born (1925)
February 14 - Merl Saunders born (1934)
February 14 - Andre Previn begins recording his score for Challenge to Lassie (1949)
February 14 - Jocelyn Pook born (1960)
February 14 - David Holmes born (1969)
February 14 - Ken Thorne begins recording his score for Superman III (1983)
February 14 - Frederick Loewe died (1988)
February 14 - Jay Chattaway records his score for the Star Trek: Voyager episode “Spirit Folk” (2000)
February 14 - Piero Umiliani died (2001)


"Belgian cinematographer Benoit Dervaux shoots most of the daytime scenes in a milky, softly glowing light that seems inspired by the title and that belies all the dark things that happen offscreen. The visual leitmotif of the Forever Marilyn statue, with its exposed undergarments under her famous white dress hovering over the tourists who come to admire it, is a bit on-the-nose as a metaphor for the position of women in society, but it does afford Qu a killer final scene and shot that lingers in the mind. Wen Zi’s score is initially entirely absent, then used sparingly and, especially in the final stretch, judiciously."
Boyd van Hoeij, The Hollywood Reporter
THE COMEDIAN - Terence Blanchard
"There he encounters Leslie Mann, who’s the best thing in the movie -- funny, charming, sexy, the works. Playing a woman escaping a bad relationship (and working off a community service sentence for assaulting her ex and the woman she caught him with), she manages to make a shoddily written character seem complicated and tortured. And there are other elements that work as well: Terrence Blanchard’s moody, bluesy score; the lived-in sibling relationship between De Niro and Danny DeVito; the tension between Jackie and Mann’s father, played by Harvey Keitel (and the tension between the two actors, longtime co-stars who seem to really sniff and circle each other here)."
Jason Bailey, Flavorwire

"'The Comedian' is all fantasy, an aging comedian daydream wherein sleaziness is as glorified as the film’s heavily stylized New York setting. A lounge jazz soundtrack and glossily shot streets push the neon on an audience desperate for vibrancy. It’s not a bad looking film, but its romanticized urbanity only distances its mish-mash of jumbled themes. We’re unsure if we’re supposed to embrace the city and its lovable vulgarity as a facet of Jackie Burke’s personality or interpret its unreal lights, drinks and constant audiences as a cage Burke needs to escape."
Jacob Oller, Paste Magazine

"'The Comedian' is directed by Taylor Hackford (director of 'Ray' and, incidentally, husband of Helen Mirren), and its greatest asset is its subtly nostalgic style. Gliding tracking shots capture a New York that has the flair of time gone by: old New York delis, streets and buildings only recognizable to outer-borough dwellers, a Greenwich Village that looks a lot more like the 1980s -- when De Niro played another comic, Rupert Pupkin, in Martin Scorsese’s 'The King of Comedy' -- than the idealized post-Giuliani movie version. It’s a little dirtier and chillier, no gloss to be found on the settings or people, and all backed by a score by the prolific jazz composer and performer Terence Blanchard ('Clockers,' '25th Hour')."
Alissa Wilkinson, Vox

"Most of 'Future World' is incoherent and boring. A typical 'action sequence' consists of men riding motor bikes over hills or a poorly choreographed fight. There’s a non-stop obtrusive, 'futuristic' score to try and keep you awake but even that starts to become numbing. Among many problems, perhaps the biggest is that Ash and Prince are deadly dull as leading characters. There’s a scene after they take off together in which they talk about whether or not she has a soul during which I swear I felt mine leaving my body."
Brian Tallerico,
"The endless chases and fight sequences quickly prove as monotonous as the electronic music score by Toydrum which sounds like it was composed on one. The target male audience will be relieved to learn, at least, that strip clubs are still around in the postapocalypse. The film features one such establishment named Love Town, whose proprietor, naturally going by the name Love Lord, is played by Snoop Dogg. Because you really don't want a future without Snoop Dogg. The rapper delivers the film's most entertaining performance, but, then again, he faced minimal competition. The strippers and prostitutes are controlled by electronic shocks delivered by collars around their necks, making one hope that Franco completed this film before he faced multiple allegations of sexual harassment."
Frank Scheck, The Hollywood Reporter
THE GARDENER - Luc St. Pierre
"'I see visiting a garden as an emotional and sensual experience,' the elegant Cabot comments early in the film. The filmmaker does his best to convey those sentiments with the beautiful photography, shot during various seasons, of the lavish garden featuring a Japanese tea teahouse, an Asian-style moon bridge, rope bridges, large-sized sculptures of frogs playing musical instruments, reflecting pools and, of course, a dazzling array of horticulture. Luc St. Pierre's gentle score, along with copious classical music selections, adds to the bucolic atmosphere."
Frank Scheck, The Hollywood Reporter

IN DARKNESS - Niall Byrne
"Anthony Byrne’s London-set spy thriller 'In Darkness' opens with an extreme close-up on a woman’s eye, its mascaraed lashes thick and beautiful and its lid shuddering in fear, all as an orchestral score swells. This might be a nod to the opening credits sequence of Alfred Hitchcock’s 'Vertigo,' but it also transforms into a meta-statement on the movies themselves. The woman in the image, we discover, is actually an actress on a screen being watched by an orchestra scoring a film. Then, the moment the camera pans over to blind pianist Sofia (played by Natalie Dormer, who also co-wrote the screenplay with Byrne), it’s obvious she’s the coiffed blonde protagonist of this espionage tale, the one we’re watching rather than the one they’re scoring. The first third of the story then presents her like a typical Hitchcock ingenue before branching out into a promisingly ambitious mystery. Too bad that story ultimately loses focus and its protagonist’s point of view."
April Wolfe, LA Weekly
"This movie begins cleverly. After the opening credits, we see a shot of a woman being strangled. Seems a POV shot from the perspective of the strangler; film buffs will recognize the camera’s positioning as similar to that used in more than one scene in Alfred Hitchcock’s 1972 'Frenzy.' Chilling, string-driven music accompanies the violence. But the camera dollies back from the POV and we see a screen; this is a film within a film, and the music is being provided by an actual orchestra. We’re in a large recording studio during a film-scoring session. Nice. Once the conductor breaks up the session, we meet the pianist Sofia, played by Natalie Dormer, who co-wrote the film with its director, Anthony Byrne. (The two are married.) Sofia is blind, and following the session, Byrne does a resourceful job of not evoking her sightless world but of demonstrating how Sofia negotiates it. The upshot being that she’s rather self-sufficient."
Glenn Kenny,

"'In Darkness' begins as a tidy little thriller in the mold of Terence Young’s 'Wait Until Dark,' though more slickly stylized and self-aware, gleefully wringing tension from the audience’s ability to see things that Sofia cannot, such as Marc sneaking around her apartment with a gun aimed at her head. In such moments, the film’s knowing sense of artifice recalls the neo-Hitchcockian pleasures of Eugenio Mira’s 'Grand Piano' and Peter Strickland’s 'Berberian Sound Studio'. (In a perhaps intentional homage to the latter film, 'In Darkness' opens on an orchestra recording the score for a violent thriller.)"
Keith Watson, Slant Magazine

MEASURE OF A MAN - Ilan Eshkeri, Tim Wheeler
"Competent but undistinguished in assembly, 'Measure of a Man' features a piano and guitar-based score by Tim Wheeler (of the Irish rock band Ash) and Ilan Eshkeri whose pleasant noodling only underlines the film’s lack of momentum."

Dennis Harvey, Variety

A MONSTER CALLS - Fernando Velazquez

"Ultimately, audiences’ reception to 'A Monster Calls' will vary depending upon their capacity for cinematic manipulation. From the music (or lack thereof) to the haunting visuals to the meticulously framed shots of Jones’ and MacDougall’s expressive faces, everything here seems destined to wrench as many tears from viewers’ eyes as possible. For me, at least, it worked like gangbusters."
Mark Rozeman, Paste Magazine
"While the film does telegraph its messages a little too clearly -- it is part fairy tale after all -- its heavy handedness doesn’t hinder its effectiveness. It does feel as though some scenes would be just as emotional (perhaps moreso), without dialing up Fernando Velázquez’s score, but again, it’s not enough to overshadow the immense emotional gut-punch that this thing delivers."
Adam Chitwood, Collider
"It seems, at times, that director J.A. Bayona ('The Orphanage') doesn’t trust his own story to provide enough emotional heft, and layers in swelling music and touching moments to get the audience to feel, as if we can’t get there on our own. Strangely enough, that contradicts the monster’s call: to confront fears and emotions honestly, to experience them organically, and to come to terms with them in the way that is best suited for each of us, individually. We can’t be afraid of our darkest feelings, the yew tree says -- not if we want to experience healing, anyhow."
Alissa Wilkinson, Vox
"By comparison with his more overtly Spielbergian early work, 'A Monster Calls' feels like a dainty little dollhouse of a movie, constructed in an old-fashioned expressionistic style that calls attention to its own artifice: Meticulously appointed rooms actually look like stage sets, clothing feels like costumes, and the actors’ reactions are so minutely telegraphed that we read them as performances rather than real emotions, all of which is accentuated by an orchestral score so lovely (from Fernando Velázquez), we find ourselves listening to the music, instead of simply letting it enrich the rest."
Peter Debruge, Variety
"That being said, even Wenders can't stop how the project's goal makes for something more fleeting than rewatchable. That's in part because the doc become numbing as it goes from one crises to the next, its checklist nature accompanied by a wilting score, with some passages awkwardly connected to the next."
Nick Allen,

- Rob
"She only grows more powerful as her skin is dirtied and caked in dried blood; as her hair gets sticky and tangled. The Hot Topic earring that initially seems like a symbol of her fetishization starts to glow in the thick blue sky that settles over the desert at night; by the end of the movie it might as well be a superhero’s crest. The electro score -- so menacing at first -- begins to thump with purpose."
David Ehrlich, IndieWire

"That deadpan reversal of predator and prey is typical of the jet-black humor that’s sprinkled throughout the film, exposing Richard and his cronies as both monsters and buffoons. These moments of levity are certainly necessary, for as Jen’s fight for survival grows increasingly intense (think self-surgery with a hot beer can and a hunting knife while high on peyote) and surreal (did we mention the peyote?), the violence crescendos to a level worthy of Fargeat’s forebears in the New French Extremity movement, which all but the most hardened viewers may find difficult to take. (Nitpickers may also have trouble with the inconsistencies in Jen’s killing spree, which pile up along with the body count.) Along with a propulsive, ’80s-inspired synth soundtrack from the mononymous Rob, this extreme violence gives 'Revenge' the texture of a horror movie as well as an action film, uniting the nightmarish nature of our heroine’s ordeal and her ultimate, battle-scarred rise from its ashes. Fans and filmmakers wondering if it’s possible to update exploitation films for the post-#MeToo era without sacrificing their transgressive appeal: Your answer has arrived, and it’s a feverish, blood-soaked 'yes.'"
Katie Rife, The Onion AV Club

"Shot with muscular agility, sizzling colors and lots of virtuoso tracking sequences, and fueled by a ballsy techno score in the John Carpenter/Dario Argento tradition, 'Revenge' is nothing if not relentless. Those who go with its splashy, Grand Guignol theater of death will have a vicious good time. Will it stoke the usual arguments about graphic violence in response to rape being just another form of exploitation? Sure. But having a woman at the helm for once also gives a certain license for excess, and Fargeat and her game actors run with it."
David Rooney, The Hollywood Reporter

SHOW DOGS - Heitor Pereira
"The mix of real and CGI animals creates a strange disjointedness in the action that’s exacerbated by the decision to computer-animate their mouths and faces. Despite adequate work by cinematographer David Machie and editors David Freeman and Sabrina Plisco, Gosnell’s approach turns everything cartoonish in an unattractive way. That’s intentional, to a certain degree. And yet from its flat visuals to Heitor Pereira’s blandly upbeat score, the film’s lack of inspiration at every level -- technical, narrative and comedic -- is so crushing that, save for pre-adolescents, most will consider this a top contender for worst of breed."
Heitor Pereira, Variety


Screenings of older films, at the following L.A. movie theaters: AMPASAmerican Cinematheque: AeroAmerican Cinematheque: EgyptianArclightArena CineloungeLACMALaemmleNew Beverly, Nuart and UCLA.

February 8
BLUE VELVET (Angelo Badalamenti) [Nuart]
THE GODFATHER PART II (Nino Rota, Carmine Coppola) [New Beverly]
MOONSTRUCK (Dick Hyman), ...AND JUSTICE FOR ALL (Dave Grusin) [Cinematheque: Aero]
PULP FICTION [New Beverly]

February 9
FIDDLER ON THE ROOF (Jerry Bock, John Williams) [Cinematheque: Aero]
THE GODFATHER PART II (Nino Rota, Carmine Coppola) [New Beverly]
HAPPY DEATH DAY (Bear McCreary) [Cinematheque: Egyptian]
OLIVER! (Lionel Bart, Johnny Green) [New Beverly]

February 10
BATTLE OF THE CORAL SEA (Ernest Gold), ANGEL BABY (Wayne Shanklin) [New Beverly]
DIRTY DANCING (John Morris) [Laemmle Ahyra Fine Arts]
LUDWIG [Cinematheque: Egyptian]
MODERN TIMES (Charles Chaplin) [UCLA]
OLIVER! (Lionel Bart, Johnny Green) [New Beverly]
RATATOUILLE (Michael Giacchino) [Cinematheque: Aero]
THE THOMAS CROWN AFFAIR (Michel Legrand), THE CINCINNATI KID (Lalo Schifrin) [Cinematheque: Aero]

February 11
BATTLE OF THE CORAL SEA (Ernest Gold), ANGEL BABY (Kevin Shanklin) [New Beverly]
HOLLYWOOD SHUFFLE (Patrice Rushen, Udi Harpaz) [New Beverly]

February 12
SHARK! (Carlos Moroyoqui), SHAMUS (Jerry Goldsmith) [New Beverly]

February 13
BLACKKKLANSMAN (Terence Blanchard) [Cinematheque: Aero]
DELIVERANCE, BOOGIE NIGHTS (Michael Penn) [New Beverly]
PAT AND MIKE (David Raksin) [New Beverly]

February 14
BEFORE SUNRISE [Arclight Hollywood]
BRAM STOKER'S DRACULA (Wojciech Kilar) [Arclight Santa Monica]
CASABLANCA (Max Steiner) [Cinematheque: Aero]
DELIVERANCE, BOOGIE NIGHTS (Michael Penn) [New Beverly]
GHOST (Maurice Jarre) [Arclight Sherman Oaks]
HAROLD AND MAUDE (Cat Stevens) [Cinematheque: Egyptian]
THE PRINCESS BRIDE (Mark Knopfler) [Arclight Culver City]
SOME LIKE IT HOT (Adolph Deutsch), PILLOW TALK (Frank DeVol) [Laemmle NoHo]
SOME LIKE IT HOT (Adolph Deutsch), PILLOW TALK (Frank DeVol) [Laemmle Royal]
THE WIZ (Charlie Smalls, Quincy Jones) [Laemmle NoHo]

February 15
BLOOD DINER (Don Preston) [Nuart]
MY LIPS BETRAY (Samuel Kaylin) [UCLA]
PULP FICTION [New Beverly]
TRAPPED (Sol Kaplan) [UCLA]
VOICE IN THE WIND (Michel Michelet) [UCLA]
WHITE LIGHTNING (Charles Bernstein), THE LONGEST YARD (Frank DeVol) [New Beverly]

February 16
ENAMORADA (Eduardo Hernandez Moncada) [UCLA]
FLIGHT OF THE DOVES (Roy Budd) [New Beverly]
THE KILLING FLOOR (Elizabeth Swados) [UCLA]
MONTEREY POP [New Beverly]
THE RED HOUSE (Miklos Rozsa) [UCLA]
WHITE LIGHTNING (Charles Bernstein), THE LONGEST YARD (Frank DeVol) [New Beverly]

February 17
ALIBI (Hugo Riesenfeld) [UCLA]
A BOY AND HIS DOG (Tim McIntire, Jaime Mendoza-Nava) [UCLA]
FLIGHT OF THE DOVES (Roy Budd) [New Beverly]
THE FLYING DEUCES (John Leipold, Leo Shuken), THE LAST REMAKE OF BEAU GESTE (John Morris) [New Beverly]
MY FAIR LADY (Frederick Loewe, Andre Previn) [Ahyra Fine Arts]


In a past entry in this series, I explained my tiresomely complicated system for listening to my soundtrack collection. One of my rotating categories is "Unheard Composers," for which I figure out which composers scored the most CDs in my collection which I haven't yet played, and then I listen to all the unheard ones (along with ones I've played but simply feel like listening to again). Right now I'm listening to the Gabriel Yared scores I've acquired over the last dozen years or so, and I'm strongly re-evaluating my opinion of the composer.

I think my mixed feelings had come from my reaction to his most well-known works, his three Oscar-nominated scores for director Anthony Minghella. I always found the English Patient score a little boring, which is only fitting since it was a beautifully crafted epic romance about a group of characters I found it impossible to care about, and though I preferred Talented Mr. Ripley (both the film and the score), his music had a repetitive quality that reminded me of some of Jack Nitzsche's mid-80s work (Starman, The Razor's Edge), where instead of developing a melody he would simply repeat it endlessly.

Listening to the other Yared CDs I've bought over the last decade, I've been increasingly impressed with his melodic gifts and the variety of his style. Amelia is my favorite of the ones I've listened to lately, probably because's today's scores so often seem starved for memorable melodies that to hear a soundtrack where the theme stays with you after the disc stops turning is a sad rarity.

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