Film Score Monthly
Screen Archives Entertainment 250 Golden and Silver Age Classics on CD from 1996-2013! Exclusive distribution by SCREEN ARCHIVES ENTERTAINMENT.
Wild Bunch, The King Kong: The Deluxe Edition (2CD) Body Heat Friends of Eddie Coyle/Three Days of the Condor, The It's Alive Ben-Hur Nightwatch/Killer by Night Gremlins Space Children/The Colossus of New York, The
FSM HOME MESSAGE BOARD FSM CDs FSM ONLINE RESOURCES FUN STUFF ABOUT US  SEARCH FSM   
LOG IN
Forgot Login?
Register
Search Archives
Film Score Friday
Latest Edition
Previous Edition
Archive Edition
The Aisle Seat
Latest Edition
Previous Edition
Archive Edition
View Mode
Regular | Headlines
All times are PT (Pacific Time), U.S.A.
Site Map
Visits since
February 5, 2001:
14916936
© 2019 Film Score Monthly.
All Rights Reserved.
Return to Articles

Ludwig Goransson won the Original Score Oscar for BLACK PANTHER (still not commercially available on CD, alas). Lady Gaga, Mark Ronson, Anthony Rossomando and Andrew Wyatt won Original Song for A Star Is Born's megahit "Shallow."

And composer/editor John Ottman won Film Editing for Bohemian Rhapsody.*


The latest CD from Intrada presents the score to Disney's 1957 Revolutionary War drama JOHNNY TREMAIN, composed by Disney veteran and four-time Oscar nominee George Bruns (The Jungle Book, The Aristocats). The Intrada CD features the original score tracks as well as the cues re-recorded for the original vinyl release. 


CDS AVAILABLE THIS WEEK

Colette - Thomas Ades - Lakeshore
Delitto Al Circolo Del Tennis
- Phil Chilton, Peter L. Smith - Quartet
Dorian Gray - Charlie Mole - Filmtrax
For the Term of His Natural Life/The Wild Duck
 - Simon Walker - Dragon's Domain
Il Diario Proibito Di Fanny
- Nora Orlandi - Quartet
Johnny Tremain
- George Bruns - Intrada Special Collection
Josef Mengele: The Final Account 
- Joe Harnell - Dragon's Domain
La Citta Prigioniera
 - Piero Piccioni - Digitmovies
IN THEATERS TODAY
 
Apollo 11 - Matt Morton
The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind - Antonio Pinto
Climax - no original score - Soundtrack CD on Milan
Devil’s Path - Ceiri Torjusson
Greta - Javier Navarrete
The Hole in the Ground - Stephen McKeon
The Iron Orchard - Duncan Thum
The Last Resort - Groove Garden
Level 16 - Menalon
A Madea Family Funeral - Philip White (score), Christopher Lennertz (themes)
Mapplethorpe - Marcelo Zarvos
Saint Judy - James T. Sale
Touch Me Not - Ivo Paunov
We Die Young - Erez Koskas
The Wedding Guest - Harry Escott
Woman at War - David Thor Jonsson

COMING SOON

March 8
BlacKkKlansman - Terence Blanchard - Backlot
Ittefaq - BT - Kss3te Recordings
The Kid Who Would Be King - Electric Wave Bureau - Sony (import)
Wonder Park - Steven Price - Sony
March 15
Celebrating John Williams
- John Williams - Deutsche Grammophon
Le Chant de Loup - tomandandy - Milan (import)
The World of Hans Zimmer: A Symphonic Collection
 - Hans Zimmer - Sony
March 22
The Beach Bum - John Debney - Milan
Operation Mystery
 - Toru Fuyuki, Naozumi Yamamoto - Cinema-Kan (import)
Woman with Seven Faces
 - Katsuhisa Hattori - Cinema-Kan (import)
March 29
The Chaperone
- Marcelo Zarvos - Sony
Never Look Away
- Max Richter - Deutsche Grammophon
April 19
Being Rose - Brian Ralson - Notefornote
Date Unknown
Arthur Gesetz
 - Christophe Blaser - Kronos
The Cardinal
 - Jerome Moross - Kritzerland
Dead Ant
 - Edwin Wendler - Notefornote
Dedicato Al Mare Egeo
- Ennio Morricone - Quartet
Dr. Heckyl and Mr. Hype
 - Richard Band - Dragon's Domain
Il Sesso Del Diavolo
- Stelvio Cipriani - Quartet
The Joel Goldsmith Collection vol. 1
 - Joel Goldsmith - Dragon's Domain
Le Gran Promesa
 - Rodrigo Flores Lopez - Kronos
Masters of the Universe - Bill Conti - Notefornote
Si Puo Fare...Amigo
 - Luis Bacalov - Digitmovies
Valley of Shadows
 - Zbigniew Preisner - Caldera
Wish You Were Here
 - Andre Matthias - Kronos

THIS WEEK IN FILM MUSIC HISTORY

March 1 - Leo Brouwer born (1939)
March 1 - Jose Nieto born (1942)
March 1 - Bernard Herrmann begins recording his score for The Man in the Grey Flannel Suit (1956)
March 1 - Nino Oliviero died (1980)
March 1 - David Newman begins recording his score for Talent for the Game (1991)
March 1 - John Barry begins recording his score for Indecent Proposal (1993)
March 1 - Laurence Rosenthal begins recording his score for Inherit the Wind (1999)
March 1 - Lucio Dalla died (2012)
March 2 - Marc Blitzstein born (1905)
March 2 - Richard Hazard born (1921)
March 2 - Lost Horizon premieres in San Francisco (1937)
March 2 - Andrzej Korzynski born (1940)
March 2 - Alfred Newman wins Oscar for The Song of Bernadette score (1944)
March 2 - Larry Carlton born (1948)
March 2 - Basil Poledouris begins recording his score to Big Wednesday (1978)
March 2 - Antoni Komasa-Lazarkiewicz born (1980)
March 2 - Jerry Goldsmith records his score to the Twilight Zone: The Movie segment "A Nightmare at 20,000 Feet" (1983)
March 2 - Serge Gainsbourg died (1991)
March 2 - Recording sessions begin on Toru Takemitsu’s score for Rising Sun (1993)
March 2 - John Debney records his score for the Star Trek: Deep Space Nine episode “The Nagus” (1993)
March 2 - Goffredo Petrassi died (2003)
March 2 - Malcolm Williamson died (2003)
March 2 - Steven Price wins Oscar for Gravity score (2014)
March 3 - Lee Holdridge born (1944)
March 3 - Jeff Rona born (1957)
March 3 - John Williams begins recording his score for Jaws (1975)
March 3 - Leonard Rosenman begins recording his unused score for The Last Hard Men (1976)
March 3 - Peter Ivers died (1983)
March 3 - Jerry Goldsmith records his score to the Twilight Zone: The Movie segment "Time Out" (1983)
March 3 - Basil Poledouris records his score for the Twilight Zone episode “Profile in Silver” (1986)
March 3 - Arthur Kempel died (2004)
March 4 - Erich Wolfgang Korngold's score for Anthony Adverse wins the Oscar; however, as per Academy policy, the score is awarded to the head of the studio's music department, Leo Forbstein (1937)
March 4 - Lucio Dalla born (1943)
March 4 - Max Steiner wins score Oscar for Now, Voyager (1943)
March 4 - Leonard Rosenman died (2008)
March 4 - Alexandre Desplat wins his second Oscar, for The Shape of Water (2018)
March 5 - Heitor Villa-Lobos born (1887)
March 5 - Harry Lubin born (1906)
March 5 - Max Steiner's score for The Informer wins the Oscar; Academy policy at the time awards to the score to the head of the studio's music branch -- who, in this case, is Max Steiner (1936)
March 5 - Bruce Smeaton born (1938)
March 5 - Robert Folk born (1949)
March 5 - Michael Gore born (1951)
March 5 - Sergei Prokofiev died (1953)
March 5 - Graham Reynolds born (1971)
March 5 - John Williams begins recording his score to Star Wars (1977)
March 5 - Bruce Broughton records his Emmy-winning score for the Buck Rogers in the 25th Century episode “The Satyr” (1981)
March 5 - Maurice Jarre begins recording his score for A Walk in the Clouds (1995)
March 5 - Theodore Shapiro begins recording his score for Idiocracy (2005)
March 5 - Gustavo Santaolalla wins his first Oscar, for the Brokeback Mountain score (2006)
March 6 - Stephen Schwartz born (1948)
March 6 - Leonard Rosenman records his score for the Alfred Hitchcock Hour episode “Beast in View” (1964)
March 6 - Richard Hageman died (1966)
March 6 - Erik Nordgren died (1992)
March 6 - Robert B. Sherman died (2012)
March 7 - King Kong premieres in New York (1933)
March 7 - Miklos Rozsa wins his first Oscar for Spellbound score (1946)
March 7 - Ron Jones records his score for the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode "Allegiance" (1990)
March 7 - Recording sessions begin for John Ottman’s score for X2 (2003)
March 7 - Gordon Parks died (2006)
March 7 - Michael Giacchino wins his first Oscar for Up (2010)

DID THEY MENTION THE MUSIC?

THE CAKEMAKER - Dominique Charpentier
 
"The Israeli filmmaker also is shrewd enough to not overuse the often intoxicating shots of delicious looking desserts Tomas creates while still highlighting their importance in fostering a love affair or two. Grazier equally owes a huge debt of gratitude to the absolutely gorgeous score by Dominique Charpentier and impressive work by cinematographer Omri Aloni."
 
Gregory Ellwood, The Playlist
 
"Cinematographer Omri Aloni shoots some of the baking scenes in a dreamy twilit haze practically akin to the pottery scene in 'Ghost': Most of us, it’s fair to say, have never looked quite so sexy or serene while working with yeast. Yet such romanticization aptly reflects Thomas’s own state of reverie in the kitchen -- the one space, after all, where he feels confidently, capably himself -- in contrast to the film’s muted, silver-shadowed naturalism elsewhere. The piercing piano motifs of French multi-instrumentalist Dominique Charpentier’s lovely score, meanwhile, never stray into saccharine territory. It’s but one typical element (or, if you will, ingredient) of the restrained classicism at work throughout 'The Cakemaker' -- reliant, like all the best traditional baking, on an intuitive human touch."
 
Guy Lodge, Variety
 
FIVE SEASONS: THE GARDENS OF PIET OUDOLF - David Thor Jonsson, Charles Gansa
 
"Evocatively scored by David Thor Jonsson and Charles Gansa, and handsomely shot by the director, the film is, at its strongest, an inspiring sensory immersion in that performance, one in which the (mostly unidentified) plants are the stars. A complex, dimensional portrait of Oudolf never quite emerges, though, and the brief doc, however lovely, lacks an essential dynamism that would make it truly compelling."
 
Sheri Linden, The Hollywood Reporter

HIDDEN FIGURES - Pharrell Williams, Hans Zimmer, Benjamin Wallfisch

"The songs by Pharrell Williams -- contemporary compositions designed to sound like period ones -- add some sprightliness and heft to the proceedings, and they mesh well with Hans Zimmer and Benjamin Wallfisch’s understated score."
 
Alonso Duralde, The Wrap
 
"Music is a big source of the movie’s radiance. Hans Zimmer and Benjamin Wallfisch elevate some of the cheesier elements, infusing them with a heart-swelling pride. In fact, it’s their anthemic, swirling-with-emotional music that bolsters much of 'Hidden Figures'' inspirational feeling. On the other hand, Bruno Mars’ contemporary, anachronistic soul singles rob the movie of greater consistency -- vintage R&B and soul would have been much more appropriate."
 
Rodrigo Perez, The Playlist
 
"Despite the racism and sexism Katherine, Dorothy, and Mary face, 'Hidden Figures' is a decidedly un-somber affair. The breezy script by Melfi and Allison Schroeder opts not to dwell much on the particulars of aeronautical science; instead, it revels in the intelligence and warmth of its subjects, in their successes both in and out of the office, and it wants viewers to do so too. 'Hidden Figures' doesn’t hide its efforts to be a crowdpleaser -- depending on audience size, you can expect clapping and cheering after moments of victory, and loud groans whenever egregious acts of racism take place (there are many). A buoyant soundtrack by Pharrell Williams, Hans Zimmer, and Benjamin Wallfisch and regular doses of comic relief help keep the tone light and optimistic despite the serious issues at hand."
 
Lenika Cruz, The Atlantic
 
"Their story plays out pretty much as you’d expect. The exposition is clunky and the emotions are broadly telegraphed; we find out that Katherine’s a widow in a tender bedside scene, in which her children mention that Daddy 'is with the angels,' cuing the twinkly pianos and strings. The score is too much there, and throughout the film -- you want it to leave you alone and let you feel something on your own, although it’s clearly necessary to navigate the wild tonal swings. The worst of them is the subplot concerning the distance from Katherine’s desk to the colored washroom several buildings away, which is played as zany slapstick until it’s played for even nuttier pathos, up to and including its big payoff line ('Here at NASA, we all pee the same color,' and no, I’m not making that up)."
 
Jason Bailey, Flavorwire
 
"Hopefully, 'Hidden Figures' will inspire women and people of color (and hell, men too) with its gentle assertion that there’s nothing unusual nor odd about people besides White men being good at math. But my secret fantasy is that this feel-good film will be a huge hit at the box office. Under its great acting, bouncy Pharrell score and message is a film that’s as geeked out about math as a superhero film is about its comic book origins. So much so that it does my mathematician’s heart proud. It deserves to make as much money as any planet in the Marvel Universe does. This is one of the year's best films."
 
Odie Henderson, RogerEbert.com
 
"That could have been the recipe for a much hokier film, but the story -- based on a book by Margot Lee Shetterly -- is just Hollywood enough to stay entertaining, but smart enough to know how important its story is. Director Theodore Melfi ('St. Vincent') sticks to every convention of the genre, but sometimes conventions are there for a reason. The story works, and the characters shine. (Pharrell Williams executive-produced the movie and supervised its soundtrack, which also helps account for its overall buoyancy.)"
 
Alissa Wilkinson, Vox
 
"The movie celebrates the perseverance and determination of these characters, and does so in an accessible fashion. When the music swells and the other characters look on in awe as Johnson concocts elaborate formulas on super-sized chalkboards, when rooms full of big shots pause to celebrate her intellect, it’s genuinely thrilling."
 
Robert Levin, AM New York
 
"It’s a stacked one, even if everyone included has been better in other movies. Taraji P. Henson, taking her first leading film role since 'Empire' shot her to stardom, is far away from Cookie as nerdy, unglamorous math prodigy Katherine, who is seen in a brief prologue doing algebra as a small child. Yet in a much more subdued part, Henson does a kind of quiet overacting, constantly pushing her glasses up her nose and often seen running through the halls of NASA with binders clutched to her chest, a retro-sounding Pharrell Williams tune providing musical accompaniment. She’s forced to rush between different sections of the NASA campus due to segregated restrooms, until, for one Oscar-clippy scene, she throws in some traditional noisy overacting as she stands up to her uncomprehending boss. Because Henson is a good actor and Katherine is a likable character, it’s satisfying. Because the script doesn’t have much to offer beyond the basics, it’s not a great scene."
 
Jesse Hassenger, The Onion AV Club
 
"The bathroom scene is by far the movie’s most satisfying, in that it follows a series of cartoonish vignettes in which Katherine must dash half a mile in high heels, clear to the West Computing Building, in order to relieve herself -- a daily humiliation amplified by the sound of a new Pharrell track called 'Runnin'.' (Also a producer on the film, Pharrell puts a playful, upbeat spin on the patent unfairness these women faced, culminating in his terrifically empowering, gospel-infused 'Victory.') As vital as these scenes are, it’s practically groan-inducing to watch Henson -- a talented actress whose exaggerated portrayal of a math whiz suggests Michelle Pfeiffer’s smart, yet haggard pre-Catwoman secretary in 'Batman Returns' -- awkwardly pantomiming someone with a bladder about to burst, but that’s the broad acting style Melfi encourages, and it’s the kind that inspires spontaneous ovations at the end of implausible monologues. (As crowd-pleasing ingredients go, 'Hidden Figures' has nearly everything except a scene of a cat being rescued from a tree.)"
 
Peter Debruge, Variety
 
PASSENGERS - Thomas Newman

"This is a significant story flaw that completely dashes any chance 'Passengers' had of being an exceptional deep space romance, but it still has enough going for it to make a worthy, entertaining watch. Again, Pratt and Lawrence deliver huge, almost instantly inspiring you to root for them, and Michael Sheen makes for a delightful supporting character -- the ship’s resident android bartender, Arthur. There’s also loads to be praised on the technical front, particularly the stunning visuals from cinematographer Rodrigo Prieto, and the score from Thomas Newman which adds a great deal to the atmosphere of the film. Tyldum had all the pieces necessary to deliver something engrossing and highly unique, and that makes it especially unfortunate that ill-fitting action detracts so significantly from the experience."
 
Perri Nemiroff, Collider
 
"As an unwitting stranded traveler, Pratt makes for a charming solo act as Jim takes in the Avalon’s amenities -- an elitist coffee dispenser (only gold-star passengers get lattes), an android bartender (Michael Sheen on third-wheel autopilot), basketball and video game dancing -- while working out the fact that he’ll be spending the rest of his life in suspended isolation. Pratt brings affectionate humor to these early scenes that portray an existence hemmed in by automation and disembodied voices. Only a space-walk sequence meant to evoke wonder and crushing solitude is ruined by the hokiness of a single rolling tear, flashy camerawork and Thomas Newman’s intrusive music score. Tyldum is no Alfonso Cuarón, it seems."
 
Robert Abele, The Wrap
 
"And that’s what dooms 'Passengers' in the end: Each of the three acts demands that you immediately discard the previous one. It’s 30 minutes of a science fiction movie, followed by 45 minutes of romantic comedy, followed by 30 minutes of action movie, and each is a step down from the previous. By the time we get to the big swells of tender music in our conclusion, eye-rolling has become mandatory. The film banks upon you being touched by a big, emotional payoff that is in no way earned, making the assumption you’re only there in the theater because you couldn’t stop gazing longingly at the two beautiful faces on the poster above."
 
Jim Vorel, Paste Magazine
 
"'Passengers' veers from comedy to tragedy, from romance to action movie, before ending on a note that feels too rushed and too chipper, even by Hollywood standards. One gets the sense Jon Spaihts’ script worked much better on the page, where the story’s cleverest elements had room to breathe -- but alas, 'Passengers' is directed by Morten Tyldum, who, just as he did with the 2014 bit of Oscar bait 'The Imitation Game,' sucks the oxygen out of even the best premises. Meanwhile, as Thomas Newman’s overbearing score tells the audience how to feel every single second, Pratt and Lawrence start to look less like passengers and more like prisoners -- trapped in a beautifully designed spaceship, trapped in a mostly crappy film."
 
Erik Henriksen, The Stranger
 
"On the surface, everything is fine. The sleek, futuristic spaceship setting is fine (if a little cold), the acting is fine (or better than fine, in Lawrence’s case), the music is fine, the lighting is fine, the editing, the camerawork -- all fine. But the couple’s disturbing meet-cute casts everything Jim says or does in a threatening light; a comment about 'giving you space' comes off like stalking prey, and his plea for forgiveness over the ship’s PA when his secret is finally revealed plays more like obsessive surveillance than rom-com quirk. Not that director Morten Tyldum, recently of 'The Imitation Game,' doesn’t try for quirk. He tries for a lot of things, careening wildly from earnest romance to feel-good comedy to hackneyed suspense, all the while leaving it up to the audience to suss out the moral complexity and existential terror underneath the glossy surface. (Indicative of this movie’s cluelessness about women in particular, at one point Lawrence declares that she can’t go for a romantic jaunt outside the ship wearing her date-night dress, so she goes commando under her spacesuit -- but leaves her high heels on.) And every time the film starts to address the fact that this cushy existence is actually a death sentence, another plot point comes in to muddle the tone even further. Oh yeah, and did we mention it turns into a sci-fi spectacle at some point?"
 
Katie Rife, The Onion AV Club

"The film is at its best when it shows Jim -- who’s charming, but never nails his 'Cast Away' impression -- doing his damnedest to stay sane in near-total isolation on the ship. The Avalon is one of the more fascinating bits of ship design to hit screens. The entire vessel is made to look like a living drill making its way through space. Its interior resembles a gorgeously constructed but abandoned hotel, full of recreation rooms, viewing galleries, futuristic helper robots, and no guests. That’s the point: Jim isn’t supposed to be alone, so Tyldum’s camera, always crisp and clear, frequently pulls us close to Jim, Arthur, and later Aurora, before pulling back out to expose their loneliness. This isn’t as unsettling as it sounds. Where this movie could easily reach 'The Shining' levels of dread, the story and Thomas Newman’s score always return to the 'sweet yet sad' setting on the dial. But there’s never any question that the situation is dire, and everyone is merely making the best of what they have. This is deeply disturbing, even enraging, on its face -- which Aurora later makes plain by acting out her frustrations with her fists, all over Jim’s face. But the film is mainly concerned with Jim’s good heart and redemptive arc. For a good stretch of the film, the characters are on one long date together, with scene after scene of fun dinners, red-dwarf-gazing, and sex. The movie certainly has its manipulative little charms, the rom-com moments designed to make us root for the two as a couple. But it also means the audience is expected to go along with the romantic premise, even after Aurora discovers the truth. Never mind that Jim lies to her, robs her of her future, and essentially sentences her to a lonely death in space, far from the place she thought she was going. Surely it’s enough that Jim apologizes over the ship’s PA, the score gently cheering him on. Surely love must conquer all, 'Passengers' posits, because in space, no one can hear you scream 'Restraining order!'"
 
Kwame Opam, The Verge
 
"As he showed in his first English-language feature, The Imitation Game, Norwegian director Morten Tyldum knows how to hit the prescribed emotional notes, but subtlety is not his strong suit. Even with striking visual design and seamless digital effects, he struggles to conjure an all-encompassing sense of wonder -- and danger -- from the deep-space setting, however insistent Thomas Newman’s score."
 
Sheri Linden, The Hollywood Reporter

SILENCE
- Kim Allen Kluge, Kathryn Kluge
 
"Scorsese is famous for techniques that provide the viewer with a kinetic rush: flashy editing tricks (freeze-frames, montage, frantic zooms, elaborate Steadicam shots), high-contrast lighting, and scores consisting largely of popular music. 'Silence' is far more restrained, with long takes, wide landscape shots, a semblance of natural lighting, and almost no music (ambient, presumably electronic tones intrude occasionally, courtesy of husband-and-wife duo Kathryn and Kim Allen Kluge). But the calm, stark, contemplative aesthetic of 'Silence' is just as aggressive as the mania of his other dramas. If anything, the pace and appearance of 'Silence' intensify its subjects and themes as much as the frenetic, kaleidoscopic style of 'Goodfellas' (1990) conveys the seedy, quick thrills of being a gangster."
 
Tal Rosenberg, Chicago Reader

"The film's title refers to the lack of divine guidance, leading to doubts that Rodrigues likens to Jesus' while being crucified. The priest even has his own personal Judas, Kichijiro (Yosuke Kubozuka), who regularly betrays his faith, only to scurry back to ask for absolution. The film underscores God's silence with an exceptionally spare score and ambient sound design: buzzing cicadas, faint drums, a shakuhachi in the distance."
 
Mark Jenkins, NPR

"It is no surprise to learn that the film's director, Martin Scorsese, has been working on it for decades, since he first read the 1966 source novel by Shûsaku Endô about Jesuit priests suffering for their faith in 17th century Japan, where Christianity is outlawed. I can't think of another Scorsese film that's so intent on simply showing us things and letting us consider their meaning. There's a little bit of voiceover narration and a few shots that go inside characters' perceptions, but for the most part you're an observer, watching people from a purposeful distance. The film starts with a long moment of actual silence, and embraces silence throughout its running time, or something akin to silence. Wood burning, waves crashing, wind moving through grass: this is what you often hear in place of a musical score. When 'Silence' is not quiet, you wish that it were, because the soundtrack is filled with moans of pain and screams of agony and the sounds of bones being broken and flame searing flesh. And, of course, during such moments you fear silence, too, because the grave is silent."
 
Matt Zoller Seitz, RogerEbert.com

"'Silence,' Martin Scorsese’s long-in-the-works adaptation of Shusaku Endo’s same-titled novel about a Jesuit priest searching for his former mentor in shogun-era Japan, is a truly religious piece of filmmaking, in that it looks for meaning in the contradictions and absurdities of faith, instead of its assurances. One might call it a movie of dark ironies or a black comedy without jokes or even the anti-Goodfellas, as the two films complement each other in unexpected ways. Submitting his camera to primeval landscapes, and foregoing his usual Marty’s Favorites playlist in favor of an almost instrument-free ambient soundtrack that qualifies as film music only in a conceptual sense, Scorsese presents a world that is daunting in its mystery, cruelty, and symbolism. As the purest exploration of the director’s great Catholic themes (completely free of New York influences, unlike his earlier 'The Last Temptation Of Christ'), it’s inevitably something of a challenge. It is slow and solemn in stretches and often remote, but it rewards patience with a transcendent epilogue that departs from the main character’s point-of-view to find a glimmer of meaning."
 
Ignatiy Vishnevetsky, The Onion AV Club

"The mix of martyrdom and colonization is an immense conversation and Scorsese wisely decides to present both sides and eschew many emotional cues. Instead of utilizing a moving score, the soundtrack mostly enhances the sounds of nature, which is important to both the Christian god and the Buddhist pantheon, and puts the warring spiritualities on a similar plane of earthly existence. And the scenes beside the ocean are filmed with a beautiful foggy immersion that heightens the ambiguity to the necessity of Garupe and Rodrigues’ journey. 'Silence''s cinematographer Rodrigo Prieto utilizes Scorsese’s patented static overhead camera angles perfectly, signifying God’s presence on the steps of the Portuguese church and en route to Japan and then -- purposefully -- Prieto largely abandons the motif when the priests become spiritually less resolute in their new surroundings."
 
Brian Formo, Collider
 
"And yet, these paradoxes surely aren’t lost on Scorsese, who has created a taxing film that will not only hold up to multiple viewings, but practically demands them. Here, as ever, he brings an arresting visual sense to the project, reteaming with production designer Dante Ferretti and DP Rodrigo Prieto to create evocative widescreen tableaux, shot on celluloid and shrouded in mist and shadow, while relaxing some of his flashier techniques (with its Peter Gabriel score and aggressive cutting, 'Last Temptation' feels dated today in a way that the director clearly intends to avoid here). What little music 'Silence' does contain is featured so faintly as to be almost subliminal, leaving ample room for engaged audiences to personalize the viewing experience, while frustrating those grasping for clues as to the precise emotional reaction Scorsese intends. That’s a risky move, as is the dramatic way he breaks the silence in the end. Those who put their faith in Scorsese may find it challenged as never before by his long-gestating passion project."
 
Peter Debruge, Variety

"Working on very rugged locations in Taiwan, Scorsese and cinematographer Rodrigo Prieto strongly evoke a physical setting as forbidding and inhospitable as the authorities who rule it; the visuals incorporate beauty where it is to be found, but mainly inject it with a sense of nature's sublime indifference and potential for terror. Working in league with this is a subdued, minimalist score by Kathryn and Kim Allen Kluge which, incidentally, is nothing like the jangly, propulsively modern music featured in the film's trailer, which fortunately is nowhere to be heard in the finished work itself."
 
Todd McCarthy, The Hollywood Reporter
 
THREE IDENTICAL STRANGERS - Paul Saunderson
 
"Filmed over five years, Wardle employs both dogged journalistic focus and expert filmmaking instincts, teasing out each discovery and allowing the narrative to twist, turn and loop with each jaw-dropping revelation. Crucially, he uses the brothers themselves as dramatic anchors, their frankness forever reminding us that these are real people, real lives. And, as the full picture reveals itself, and the tone shifts from that initial euphoria to considerably darker shades -- augmented by Paul Saunderson's evocative, insidious score -- 'Three Identical Strangers' becomes a powerful, emotional and unforgettable study of family, identity and the devastating manipulation of truth."
 
Nikki Baughan, The List
 
"With a noir-like atmosphere that drops hints about murky backroom dealings, Wardle gradually allows the experiment to creep into the story before overtaking it, using an eerie score and the brothers’ flabbergasted reactions to develop a substantial foundation of awe. But the movie’s on shakier footing once it gets past that point, and the experiment takes center stage."
 
Eric Kohn, IndieWire
 
"Making able use of Paul Saunderson's score, director Wardle steadily reshapes the tone of the film as the sinister ramifications of these discoveries become clear. The ultimate irony, as David's Aunt Hedy points out, is that Dr. Peter Neubauer, director of the Child Development Center in Manhattan and the psychoanalyst in charge of the study, was a Holocaust refugee from Austria, conducting human experiments in some ways comparable to those carried out by the Nazis."
 
David Rooney, The Hollywood Reporter
 
THE YEAR OF SPECTACULAR MEN - Madelyn Deutch
 
"While the elder Deutch has a magnetic presence (the expressiveness of her face feels like it’s ever-blossoming, serving the theme of the film), 'The Year of Spectacular Men' collapses on the crutch of hackneyed narration and, most especially, constant music cues that formally undermine the ripe banter between Deutch and her male co-stars. The actors playing the 'spectacular men' otherwise do fine work, particularly Braun as a filmmaker who carries a tape recorder into which he whispers all the things that he can’t bring himself to say in real life. Deutch’s songs, ironically, obfuscate the allure and richness of her character and performance, as her script strays from wry observational humor and gradually drowns in the sludge of platitudes."
 
Niles Schwartz, Slant Magazine

THE NEXT TEN DAYS IN L.A.

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

March 1
AUDITION (Koji Endo) [Nuart]
A DIARY OF CHUJI'S TRAVELS [UCLA]
KILL BILL: VOL. 1 (The RZA) [New Beverly]

LET THE GOOD TIMES ROLL, AMERICAN HOT WAX (Kenny Vance, Ira Newborn) [New Beverly]
SHOOT THE PIANO PLAYER (Georges Delerue), ROPE (Leo F. Forbstein) [Cinematheque: Aero]

March 2
DRAGNET GIRL [UCLA]
JULES AND JIM (Georges Delerue), MARNIE (Bernard Herrmann) [Cinematheque: Aero]
THE KENTUCKY FRIED MOVIE [New Beverly]

LET THE GOOD TIMES ROLL, AMERICAN HOT WAX (Kenny Vance, Ira Newborn) [New Beverly]
ROCCO AND HIS BROTHERS (Nino Rota) [Cinematheque: Egyptian]
SYLVESTER (Lee Holdridge) [New Beverly]
THE WILD BUNCH (Jerry Fielding) [Laemmle Ahyra Fine Arts]

March 3
ANNIE (Charles Strouse, Ralph Burns) [Cinematheque: Aero]
THE CHEAT [UCLA]
CONVERSATION PIECE (Franco Mannino), THE INNOCENT (Franco Mannino) [Cinematheque: Egyptian]
GIDGET GOES HAWAIIAN (George Duning), GIDGET GOES TO ROME (John Williams) [New Beverly]
SILENCE [UCLA]
SYLVESTER (Lee Holdridge) [New Beverly]
THE 39 STEPS (Louis Levy), CONFIDENTIALLY YOURS (Georges Delerue) [Cinematheque: Aero]

March 4
BEFORE SUNSET [Arclight Santa Monica]
GIDGET GOES HAWAIIAN (George Duning), GIDGET GOES TO ROME (John Williams) [New Beverly]
POINT BREAK (Mark Isham) [New Beverly]
WHEN HARRY MET SALLY... (Marc Shaiman) [Arclight Hollywood]

March 5
(500) DAYS OF SUMMER (Mychael Danna, Rob Simonsen) [Arclight Culver City]
(500) DAYS OF SUMMER (Mychael Danna, Rob Simonsen) [Arclight Sherman Oaks]
HELLO, DOLLY! (Jerry Herman, Lennie Hayton, Lionel Newman) [LACMA]
SKATETOWN U.S.A. (Miles Goodman), ROLLER BOOGIE (Bob Esty, Craig Safan) [New Beverly]

March 6
GASLIGHT (Bronislau Kaper) [New Beverly]
THE TAKE (Fred Karlin), NIGHTHAWKS (Keith Emerson) [New Beverly]

March 7
MURDER ON THE ORIENT EXPRESS (Richard Rodney Bennett) [Laemmle Royal]
THE PRODUCERS (John Morris) [Laemmle NoHo]
THE TAKE (Fred Karlin), NIGHTHAWKS (Keith Emerson) [New Beverly]
TWO FOR THE ROAD (Henry Mancini), SHOOT THE MOON [Cinematheque: Egyptian]

March 8
KILL BILL: VOL. 2 (The RZA, Robert Rodriguez) [New Beverly]
KING KONG (Max Steiner), THE MIRACLE WOMAN [UCLA]
MAD MAX: FURY ROAD (Tom Holkenborg) [Nuart]
THE MAN WHO KNEW TOO MUCH (Bernard Herrmann), THE BRIDE WORE BLACK (Bernard Herrmann) [Cinematheque: Aero]
MILLER'S CROSSING (Carter Burwell), UNDER THE VOLCANO (Alex North) [Cinematheque: Egyptian]
ONE FLEW OVER THE CUCKOO'S NEST (Jack Nitzsche), THE CRAZY WORLD OF JULIUS VROODER (Bob Alcivar) [New Beverly]

March 9
FRANKENSTEIN, THE RAVEN, DRACULA, THE BLACK CAT (Heinz Roemheld), BRIDE OF FRANKENSTEIN (Franz Waxman), MURDERS IN THE RUE MORGUE, SON OF FRANKENSTEIN (Frank Skinner) [Cinematheque: Egyptian]
THE GROOVE TUBE [New Beverly]
MEET JOHN DOE (Dimitri Tiomkin), THE MOST DANGEROUS GAME (Max Steiner) [UCLA]
ONE FLEW OVER THE CUCKOO'S NEST (Jack Nitzsche), THE CRAZY WORLD OF JULIUS VROODER (Bob Alcivar) [New Beverly]
PHAR LAP (Bruce Rowland) [New Beverly]
REAR WINDOW (Franz Waxman), MISSISSIPPI MERMAID (Antoine Duhamel) [Cinematheque: Aero]

March 10
THE CASE AGAINST BROOKLYN (Mischa Bakaleinikoff), TARAWA BEACHHEAD [New Beverly]
THE EAGLE HUNTRESS (Jeff Peters) [UCLA]
PHAR LAP (Bruce Rowland) [New Beverly]
TOM JONES (John Addison), BIG FISH (Danny Elfman) [Cinematheque: Egyptian]
WAR AND PEACE (Vyacheslav Ovchinnikov) [Cinemathque: Aero]


THINGS I'VE HEARD, READ, SEEN OR WATCHED LATELY

During last Sunday's Oscar telecast, the In Memoriam segment was accompanied by Gustavo Dudamel conducting musicians from his L.A. Philharmonic in a performance of "Leaving Home" from John Williams' Superman, a wonderful cue in a score full of wonderful cues.

For several years, I have circulated among friends my predictions of who will be included in the In Memoriam section (I put much more effort into this than I do into predicting the Oscar winners -- I didn't even bother with the winners this year, and most of my rough guesses proved to be wrong), ranking them from 1 to 60 in likelihood. (It's not like a dead pool -- I don't list them until they have actually passed on).

I had Michel Legrand pretty high on my list (specifically, #10) and I also had Francis Lai (#27) but he was not included, alas (Patrick Williams also didn't make the cut, but he was much bigger in television than in films, despite an Oscar nomination for Breaking Away). The biggest surprise was the inclusion of John Morris -- he deserved to be there, but since he died more than a month before last year's awards, I'd figured that would disqualify from inclusion this year. (the cutoff point seems to get narrower and narrower each year -- Stanley Donen's passing was announced on Saturday morning, which is why he was too late to be included, but he's a safe bet for next year).

The most surprising exclusion was Dick Miller -- there's even a feature length documentary about him and his career -- along with lyricist Norman Gimbel (four-time nominee, winner for "It Goes Like It Goes,"); experimental filmmaker Jonas Mekas; producers Arnold Kopelson (Platoon), Philip d'Antoni (The French Connection) and Gary Kurtz (Star Wars); and actors Charles Aznavour, R. Lee Ermey, Scott Wilson, Carol Channing and Sondra Locke.

*If nothing else, the 91st Oscars gave the clearest example of what it's like to become toxic in the entertainment industry. For the film that won the most awards (four), not a single winner mentioned the film's director in their acceptance speech -- not even the man who has been that director's editor and composer for the last quarter century.

Return to Articles Author Profile
Comments (1):Log in or register to post your own comments
Was Andy Vajna's death too late for him to make the cut?

The major players in the list warrant a rapid-fire montage, IMHO. So for Albert Finney, say, there would be millisecond clips from TOM JONES, MURDER ON THE ORIENT EXPRESS, ANNIE or THE DRESSER, and SKYFALL. A nice way to convey the range of their careers -- and something I think they used to do anyway.

At least they used some film music this year. Considering the immense library of poignant music written for films it's insulting that they haven't done so consistently. Something from one of the recently deceased composers would be especially apt.

Film Score Monthly Online
The Top 12 Scores by Hans Zimmer
Fenton Scores Neeson
What Brian Tyler Wants
Loving It up With John Debney
Bala's Beats
Cleaning up at Sundance
Wong's Turn: Scores for an Elephants' Graveyard
Ear of the Month Contest
Today in Film Score History:
March 21
Alex North begins recording his score for Spartacus (1960)
Alexander Courage records his score for the Lost in Space episode "The Mechanical Men" (1967)
Alfred Newman wins his seventh Oscar, his second for Score, for Love Is a Many-Splendored Thing (1956)
Antony Hopkins born (1921)
Gary Hughes born (1922)
Jay Chattaway records his score for the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode “Journey’s End “ (1994)
John Williams wins his fifth Oscar, for his Schindler's List score (1994)
Miklos Rozsa begins recording his score to The Green Berets (1968)
Mort Lindsey born (1923)
Nicola Piovani wins his first Oscar, for Life is Beautiful; Stephen Warbeck wins the final Comedy or Musical Score Oscar for Shakespeare in Love (1999)
FSMO Featured Video
Video Archive • Audio Archive
Podcasts
© 2019 Film Score Monthly. All Rights Reserved.