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The latest CD from Quartet is a remastered edition of the score for John Carpenter's originally panned, now classic 1982 remake of THE THING. The film's score was composed by the great Ennio Morricone (with, reportedly, some additional cues contributed by the director himself), and much of it was not heard in the final film though some of the unused material was tracked into The Hateful Eight, whose original score won Morricone his first "competitive" Oscar. The Quartet CD features the sequencing (including the unused material) created by Morricone himself for original MCA LP, later released on CD by Varese Sarabande.


CDS AVAILABLE THIS WEEK

The Roads Not Taken - Sally Potter - Milan  
 


COMING SOON

June 12
The Meanest Man in Texas - Steve Dorff - Notefornote
June 19
Hackers
 - Simon Boswell, songs - Varese Sarabande 
July 10
Da Corleone a Brooklyn
- Franco Micalizzi - DIgitmovies
August 7
Star Wars: Shadows of the Empire (re-release) 
- Joel McNeely - Varese Sarabande
Date Unknown
Django Il Bastardo -
 Vasco Vassil Kojucharov - Beat
Everybody's End
- Luigi Seviroli - Digitmovies
Exorcism at 60,000 Feet
 - Richard Band - Dragon's Domain
5% de risque/Demain les momes
- Eric Demarsan - Music Box
Genova a Mano Armata
 - Franco Micalizzi - Digitmovies
Incident at Raven's Gate/The Time Guardian
 - Graham Tardif, Allan Zavod - Dragon's Domain
La Polizia Accusa: Il Servizio Segreto Uccide - Luciano Michelini - Digitmovies
La Svergognata/Anima Mia
- Berto Pisano, Franco Pisano - Digitmovies
L'Agnese Va a Morire
 - Ennio Morricone - Beat
Occhio Malocchio Prezzemolo E Finocchio
 - Guido & Maurizio De Angelis - Beat 
One Potato, Two Potato
 - Gerald Fried - Caldera
The Paul Chihara Collection vol. 4
 - Paul Chihara - Dragon's Domain
Poliziotto Senza Paura
- Stelvio Cipriani - Digitmovies
Preparati La Bara
 - Gian Franco Reverberi - Digitmovies
Romance
- Eric Demarasan - Music Box
Tales of Frankenstein
 - William Stromberg - Dragon's Domain  
The Thing
- Ennio Morricone - Quartet


THIS WEEK IN FILM MUSIC HISTORY

June 5 - William Loose born (1910)
June 5 - Laurie Anderson born (1947)
June 5 - Amanda Kravat born (1966)
June 5 - Danny Lux born (1969)
June 5 - Aesop Rock born (1976)
June 5 - Arthur Rubinstein begins recording his score to Whose Life Is It Anyway? (1981)
June 5 - David Newman begins recording his score for DuckTales The Movie: Treasure of the Lost Lamp (1990)
June 6 - Aram Khachaturian born (1903)
June 6 - Ed Plumb born (1907) 
June 6 - Edgar Froese born (1944)
June 6 - Herbert Stothart begins recording his score to The Yearling (1946)
June 6 - Miklos Rozsa begins recording his score for The Red Danube (1949)
June 6 - Leigh Harline begins recording his score for The Wonderful World of the Brothers Grimm (1961)
June 6 - Michel Legrand begins recording his unused score for The Man Who Loved Cat Dancing (1973)
June 6 - Jay Chattaway records his score for the Star Trek: Deep Space Nine episode “Broken Link” (1996)
June 6 - Jay Chattaway records his score for the Star Trek: Deep Space Nine episode “Call to Arms” (1997)
June 7 - Georges Van Parys born (1902)
June 7 - Franz Reizenstein born (1911)
June 7 - Charles Strouse born (1928)
June 7 - Don Peake born (1940)
June 7 - Lewis Furey born (1949)
June 7 - David Raksin begins recording his score for A Lady without Passport (1950)
June 7 - Dave Grusin begins recording his score for The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter (1968)
June 7 - Morton Stevens wins an Emmy for his Hawaii Five-O episode score “A Thousand Pardons, You’re Dead,” and Pete Rugolo wins for his TV movie score The Challengers (1970)
June 7 - Elmer Bernstein begins recording his score for The Shootist (1976)
June 7 - Daniele Amfitheatrof died (1983)
June 7 - Billy Goldenberg records his score for the Amazing Stories episode "The Amazing Falsworth" (1985)
June 8 - George Antheil born (1900)
June 8 - Recording sessions begin for Bronislau Kaper's score for The Wild North (1951)
June 8 - John Williams wins the Outstanding Music Composition Emmy for Heidi (1969)
June 8 - Jean Wiener died (1992)
June 8 - Dennis McCarthy records his score for the Star Trek: Deep Space Nine episode “In the Hands of the Prophets” (1993)
June 8 - Caleb Sampson died (1998)
June 8 - Herschel Burke Gilbert died (2003)
June 9 - James Newton Howard born (1951)
June 9 - Geir Bohren born (1951)
June 9 - Louis Gruenberg died (1964)
June 9 - Chris Tilton born (1979)
June 9 - Matthew Margeson born (1980)
June 9 - Ron Jones records his score for the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode "Shades of Grey" (1989)
June 10 - Frederick Loewe born (1901)
June 10 - Don Costa born (1925)
June 10 - Randy Edelman born (1947)
June 10 - Laurent Petitgirard born (1950)
June 10 - Hugo Friedhofer begins recording his score to Above and Beyond (1952)
June 10 - Steve London born (1970)
June 10 - Jerry Goldsmith begins recording his replacement score for Chinatown (1974)
June 10 - Marius Ruhland born (1975)
June 10 - David Shire begins recording his score to Farewell, My Lovely (1975)
June 10 - Dennis McCarthy records his score for the Star Trek: Voyager episode “Basics, Part II” (1996)
June 11 - Carmine Coppola born (1910)
June 11 - Shelly Manne born (1920)
June 11 - Lennie Niehaus born (1929)
June 11 - Alexander Balanescu born (1954)
June 11 - Nicholas Carras records his score for Frankenstein’s Daughter (1958)
June 11 - David Shire begins recording his score for Paternity (1981)
June 11 - E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial opens in New York and Los Angeles (1982)
June 11 - Alan Silvestri begins recording his score for Fandango (1984)

DID THEY MENTION THE MUSIC?

AVENGERS: ENDGAME - Alan Silvestri
 
"There’s too much of everything here, including an overlong battle that plays like an endless touch-football game, but at least the movie acknowledges its own unwieldiness. 'You took everything from me,' Elizabeth Olson’s Scarlet Witch hisses at Thanos, who replies, speaking for us all, 'I don’t even know who you are.' It’s almost a shame that, just as the MCU’s multiyear Avengers experiment has found its dramatic footing -- dialing down the snark and adding cathartic contributions like Alan Silvestri’s Morricone-esque orchestral score -- it’s over. 'Endgame' is square enough to conclude with a slow dance, but that also means its heart was, by and large, in the right place. Maybe we’ll miss being exhausted by these movies."
 
Joshua Rothkopf, Time Out New York 

“‘Endgame’ mostly unfolds as a prolonged embrace of the long-term challenges facing its beloved mainstays, like Banner’s ability to merge his meek-scientist persona with the raging testosterone monster within, and Thor’s lingering grief over his departed mother. (Here and there, Bradley Cooper’s Rocket Raccoon scores a good laugh, but the potential of this cartoony troublemaker remains unfulfilled.) Alan Silvestri’s epic score keeps the plot moving through various overlapping circumstances, but ‘Endgame’ works best in small doses of the greatest hits — at least until the Russos throw up their hands and bring together every possible strand for a cacophonous showdown. Amid the noisy CGI of the final-act battle, there are plenty of rousing moments - but they’re all fragmentary, with payoffs according to the level of viewer investment. Newcomers to the series may as well be watching a ‘Transformers’ movie.”
 
Eric Kohn, IndieWire 
 
"The beginning of 'Avengers: Endgame' reminds you that Marvel is run by very clever people -- or at least people who know enough to hire very clever people. Tonally, they change course frequently. 'Avengers: Infinity War' ended with a noisy and tumultuous super-battle, so 'Avengers: Endgame' begins with something quiet and down to earth: You could almost be watching a 'real' movie. Clint Barton/Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner) is teaching his daughter how to line up and shoot an arrow. Tending the grill, his wife asks if they want mustard or mayonnaise on their hot dogs and father and daughter bond over the ridiculousness of mayonnaise on a hot dog. Their little son calls for ketchup. And then -- poof -- Barton is alone. The music comes in so softly that you barely hear it over the flickering Marvel panels."
 
David Edelstein, New York 

"By this point in the franchise, audiences have come to expect a top-of-the-line experience: iconic costumes and sets, stunning visual effects (including convincing computer-generated characters, like Thanos and Hulk), cinematography that alternates smoothly between epic clashes and nuanced character moments, and rousing music that underscores both the peril and the sheer importance of it all. Like 'Infinity War' before it, 'Endgame' delivers these elements at a higher level than Marvel’s less expensive -- and considerably less expansive -- lone-hero installments. But there’s something considerably less elegant to the storytelling this time around."
 
Peter Debruge, Variety

CHILD’S PLAY - Bear McCreary

"The shoddiness of 'Child’s Play (2019)' gives the film a somewhat fan made demeanor. While the reboot possesses a campy charm that advanced ironists are bound to find entertaining, an eerily effective score from Bear McCreary and a scene-stealing performance by Brian Tyree Henry, none of this is remotely enough to make up for a sheer lack of imagination. With a looming 'RoboCop' reboot on the horizon, one can’t help but feel that 'Child’s Play' is Orion’s careless attempt to finance their next plunge into ’80s nostalgia."
 
Griffin Schiller, The Playlist 
 
"Nevertheless, Klevberg (whose Norwegian short ‘Polaroid’ showed his potential to generate solid jump-scares, and generated a Weinstein-produced feature that has yet to come out) clearly has plenty of sturdy reference points. Once the ‘E.T.’ homage falls away, ‘Child’s Play’ seems keen on tapping ‘Goonies’ as Andy and his new friends (Beatrice Kitsos and Ty Consiglio) team up to take down Chucky’s maniacal scheme. Bear McCreary’s whimsical score outshines the more routine homage in play, and the movie’s polished look may be the finest salute to the ‘80s aesthetic since the first season of ‘Stranger Things.’ But the elegant homage is out of step with the hokey material, and unlike Alexandra Aja’s superb ‘Piranha 3D,’ Klevberg’s audacious vision is simply out of synch with the silliness of the story."
 
Eric Kohn, IndieWire 
 
"Hamill has the unenviable task of going up against Brad Dourif’s franchise-defining performance as Chucky, but this version is distinctly different-- Hamill’s Chucky is more like a whimsical child (he borrows the soft, high-pitched voice from his work in 'Brigsby Bear'), and doesn't have the venomous misogyny of Dourif's incarnation. This vision of Chucky (squint and you might see Hamill’s blue eyes with red hair) is filled out by excellent puppet work, which makes Chucky seem like a full-functioning, believable robot product (except for unfortunate inserts where Chucky is imagined in CG). Even the music goes the extra mile to make Chucky feel creepy, as when Hamill sings Bear McCreary’s 'Buddi Song,' a recurring lullaby that feels pilfered from a 'Toy Story' montage."
 
Nick Allen, RogerEbert.com 

"Despite all these upgrades, Chucky seems less intimidating than before. Part of this can be blamed on the ugly new character design, although he’s really hamstrung by the inevitable limits of an animatronic character’s performance. While the eyes are the only feature that appear to be computer generated, the facial expressions can be confusing, relying on the score to cue us to what Chucky is 'thinking.' But when you get down to it, his personality isn’t all that interesting anymore. At least the fact the film doesn’t take itself too seriously can make 'Child’s Play' fun to laugh at — a kind of good-bad movie experience that’s nowhere near as entertaining as that recent 'Black Mirror' episode where Miley Cyrus plays a pop star with a dangerous tie-in toy."
 
Peter Debruge, Variety 
 
GLORIA BELL - Matthew Herbert
 
"Shot in peachy sunset pastels and saturated neon hues by cinematographer Natasha Braier, 'Gloria Bell' is easy on both the eye and ear. Lelio likens this remake to a cover version of 'Gloria,' an apt metaphor given how music is a crucial character in both films; arguably more so the second time around, as composer Matthew Herbert's plaintive jazzy score is almost drowned out by a busy playlist of Latin dance numbers, classic disco and vintage pop hits."
 
Stephen Dalton, The Hollywood Reporter
 
"The constant need to summarize and annotate every significant moment grows wearisome (it's like being stuck watching a sporting event with a couple of sportscasters who don't know when to shut up), but at the level of image, sound and music, 'Godzilla: King of the Monsters' is a frequently brilliant film that earnestly grapples with the material it presents, and a religious picture about faith and spirituality, sin and redemption, where monsters die for our mistakes so that humankind won't have to. It deploys state-of-the-art moviemaking tools to try to return audiences to a stage of childlike terror and delight. Arthur C. Clarke famously observed that any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic. This movie is magic."
 
Matt Zoller Seitz, RogerEbert.com 

'You won’t mind any of their overheated scenes, even if sometimes these characters feel about as detachable as Raymond Burr did in the Americanized ‘Gojira’. Mostly, audiences will be waiting for the moment when a jet pilot heroically ejects from his cockpit, only to disappear like an hors-d'oeuvre popped straight into the big guy’s mouth. Connoisseurs will thrill to hints of composer Akira Ifukube’s original orchestra motifs or the passing mention of an 'oxygen destroyer,' but mourn the lack of political stakes. It’s big dumb fun (a smackdown with King Kong is on the horizon), and maybe that’s all these sequels ever were."
 
Joshua Rothkopf, Time Out New York
 
"Bear McCreary’s bombastic score occasionally riffs on composer Akira Ifukube’s haunting, martial music from the classic Godzilla films of the 1950s and 1960s, but it, like the entirety of 'Godzilla: King of the Monsters' feels overburdened and unsure of itself. Here’s hoping Legendary’s 2020 release of 'Godzilla vs. King Kong' will improve on -- or at least approach -- the formula Ishiro Honda and Toho Studios mastered over half a century ago."
 
Marc Savlov, The Austin Chronicle
 
"Dialogue exchanges consistently land with a thud and we get too many moments of self-sacrifice for any of them to count -- one major player dies without even a close-up -- but 'King of the Monsters' delivers what its genre requires. Truly awesome monster scenes fill the screen, often imbued with emotional resonance by music cues. This not only reprises the memorable Godzilla and Mothra themes from earlier films but uses a Serj Tanakian cover of Blue Oyster Cult’s 'Godzilla' over the end credits -- which, of course, set up a post-titles sting to prove that we’ve not seen the last of any of these creatures."
 
Kim Newman, Screen Daily 
 
KNIFE + HEART - M83 (Anthony Gonzalez)

"For a giallo riff so light on gore, ‘Knife + Heart’ s still a bloody mess. Much of the movie is held together only by the tension of its atmosphere, some credit for which definitely belongs to the shimmering ambiance of Anthony Gonzalez’ synth score (yes, he’s the artist otherwise known as M83, and yes, he’s Yann’s brother). Still, viewers that get into the mood -- and definitely those who were seduced by ‘You and the Night’ -- will find plenty to love here.”
 
David Ehrlich, IndieWire 

"Gonzalez has a firm command of vintage gialli atmosphere as ‘Knife + Heart’ is awash in bright hallucinatory colors, genre totems such as black leather trench coats and pay phones, and a score -- by M83 -- that lends the whole enterprise a synth-y sense of alienation. Formally, the film is to die for, but it goes to sleep narratively not long after its opening. Gonzalez might have stronger humanist credentials than De Palma and Friedkin, but their sadism -- their emphasis on narrative and stylistic drive over character portraiture -- enabled them to manipulate their audiences on an escalating level. 'Dressed to Kill' and 'Cruising' may pivot on disreputable fears and resentments, but they’re unshakably haunting and focused expressions of those viewpoints. Meanwhile, Gonzalez spreads himself too thin, alternately mounting a tormented lesbian romance, a serial killer thriller, and a rallying cry against homophobia."
 
Chuck Bowen, Slant Magazine 
 
"The lighting changes from icy blue to red hot to pure white and back again in a cyclical movement that brings to mind a children’s rotating night light, an odd vestige of innocence in what is overall a pretty depraved environment. For all the accurate comparisons to Brian De Palma and Italian giallo films -- particularly in the murder scenes and M83’s synthy score, though it’s much more narratively cohesive -- I see lots of other potential influences as well. There’s a seedy glamour and a noir sensibility that owes as much to Eighties films 'Vortex' and 'Variety.' I even sense a nod to neo-realism when Anne says to her sidekick Archie (Maury), 'Find common people with character to bring our films to life.' 'There are scenes that show up in the dark shadows of a film negative (the way Godard intercuts them in 'A Married Woman' but more diverse) that signify dream sequences, creating a psychic link between Anne and the killer that’s reminiscent of Agent Dale Cooper’s methods in 'Twin Peaks.' But for all of these re-creations (whether real or imagined) it’s not a cheap knockoff. It’s postmodernism at its finest."
 
Danielle White, The Austin Chronicle 

"If I were to select the movie with the worst chances of winning the Palme, I might go with Yann Gonzalez’s queer genre curiosity 'Knife + Heart' (Grade: B-), the most legitimately underground of the main competition selections, though certainly not the worst or the least interesting. Set against the Paris gay porn industry of 1979, the film follows a blue-movie producer (an excellent Vanessa Paradis) pining for her editor/ex-lover (Kate Moran), all while a squealing masked killer -- a kind of leather-daddy Leatherface -- knocks off her regular troupe of actors with a dildo switchblade. Gonzalez directs the murder set pieces like excerpts from a lost Italian giallo -- the music swelling with synth grandeur, eyes peaking through holes, blades spectacularly gleaming. But the tone of the film is warmer, celebrating a makeshift family of pornographers, like a DIY 'Boogie Nights.' 'Knife + Heart' sometimes feels as rough around the edges and inelegantly plotted as its pornos-within-the-movie, but maybe that’s just conceptual consistency: It’s the kind of film you could more readily imagine spooled up on the screen of a dingy, rundown red light district theater than in Cannes’ lavish Lumiere Theatre. It’s all part of its scrappy charm."
 
A.A. Dowd, The Onion AV Club 

"Shot on 35mm by Simon Beaufils and backed by a throbbing retro score from Gallic electro rockers M83 (one of whose founding members is the director’s brother), 'Knife' hits you from its very first frame -- and this is really a frame of celluloid and not a file of gigabytes -- as a work engulfed in the pleasures of filmmaking's past. Like in Gonzalez’s debut feature, 'Knife' indulges in the seductive, sleazy stylings of thrillers and horror flicks from the '70s and '80s (alongside movies by Argento and De Palma, the cult classic 'Liquid Sky' also comes to mind here), with cinematographer Beaufils bathing scenes in oversaturated shades of blue and red as M83’s vintage beats blast on the soundtrack. "
 
Jordan Mintzer, The Hollywood Reporter

THE MAN WHO KILLED DON QUIXOTE - Roque Banos
 
"Angelica, it turns out, was also impacted by Toby’s production. After the film wrapped, she went to Madrid to be a actress, but it didn’t quite work out the way she hoped. When she reveals that she had worked as an escort at one point, the score gasps with lamentation. As the film reorients itself around protecting her purity, and quite literally pits her as the Madonna to Kurylenko’s whore, it feels like Quixote has gotten lost in some very strange weeds. The experience of watching it, especially given its dreamlike unreality and head-scratching punnery (this is a deeply unfunny movie) is like listening to a doddering old man for whom every story -- about art, politics, local goings on -- ends up being about how every woman is an evil witch that can’t be trusted. There’s enough of a germ of something in 'Don Quixote' that you find yourself shaking your head by its climax, wondering, wait, what were we talking about again?"
 
Emily Yoshida, New York 


OPHELIA - Steven Price
 
“Ridley makes a fine, modern heroine, but Watts goes big and waltzes away with the movie. She has two roles: Gertrude and Gertrude’s hitherto unknown twin sister, a witch. At junctures, Ophelia descends to the witch’s subterranean lair to obtain ‘potions’ for her Queen. Yes, the witch -- a bitter hellion -- appears to be helping turn her sister into a medieval cokehead. Watts’s Gertrude, meanwhile, argues so openly with herself that Hamlet’s remonstrations are superfluous. Her rages become so huge that Steven Price’s music has to compete mighty hard with her. It’s a nutty, bombastic score, but anything more modest would have gotten lost in the histrionics.”
 
David Edelstein, New York 
 
POKEMON DETECTIVE PIKACHU - Henry Jackman
 
"'Detective Pikachu' plays out like two different movies, and the first one is inherently stronger. This portion is a gumshoe mystery amidst dark, neon-lit side-streets and a sprawling cityscape, often evoking 'Blade Runner.' Aiding that feeling is a beautiful score by Henry Jackman, which plays like a mixture of synthy, Vangelis-lite crossed with occasional 8-bit melodies to capture the spirit of the GameBoy games without being too overt (similar -- and improving -- on his scores for the 'Wreck-It Ralph' films). The tech-noir aesthetic and the scaled-down, often charming buddy dynamic between Tim and Pikachu is very effective. As the mystery begins to unfold in somewhat predictable ways (remembering that this is a movie for kids and not a complete 'plot is besides the point' gumshoe a la 'The Long Goodbye'), the film loses a bit of steam, along with a centerpiece action sequence that’s clunky and draws attention to itself in a bad way for being standard-issue in something that had been distinguishable until that point. The climax doesn’t quite bounce it back, but does fare better, despite leaning heavily on a villain plot lifted directly from Tim Burton’s 'Batman.'"
 
Ryan Oliver, The Playlist 
 
THE PRODIGY - Joseph Bishara
 
"In fact, it is scary, even when you know what’s coming, because McCarthy’s beats are always in unexpected places. You wait for a face to appear in a pool of darkness behind Sarah’s head -- and it doesn’t, but the space remains charged with menace. A scene in which the whimpering Miles settles into bed beside his mom and his hand inches up along her bare shoulder is eerie beyond reason -- and eerier still because Sarah lies paralyzed, eyes open, her face conveying an irreducible mixture of terror, disgust, and despair. Grisly revelations are mercilessly drawn out but then come swiftly, so swiftly that even if you’re prepared, you’re not. (Tom Elkins and Brian Ufberg are the crack editors.) The composer, Joseph Bishara, scores all the 'Conjuring' and 'Insidious' movies, and his work in 'The Prodigy' consists of low growls and thunks that only rarely coalesce into a melody. It’s not especially imaginative, but the minimalism works."
 
David Edelstein, New York

"And 'The Prodigy' needs every ounce of that second-tier horror energy, because -- outside of its strong leading performances -- the film doesn’t quite do enough to nudge it beyond the realm of simple competence. One personal pet peeve is the music. A movie about evil reincarnation could pave the way for any of a hundred different song choices, but 'The Prodigy''s score is focused on a dissatisfying blend of danger chords and a single shapeless Hungarian folk song."
 
Matthew Monagle, The Austin Chronicle 

"As the boy ages, too many cliches pile up. For one, the first living thing that catches on that the child is possessed is, of course, the family dog, meaning that Miles (Jackson Robert Scott) has to kill it. Later, a character slowly pries off a section of plywood to find the dog's body, leading to hysterical screams and the wailing of the film's score. McCarthy takes a predictable plot development and turns it into a moment of high horror."

Henry Stewart, Slant Magazine

"The film is littered with jump scare, but most of them offer up shocking twists that land with genuine payoff: the score winds up, the framing gets tighter, the shots linger for longer, and when a different film might serve up a jump scare with a giddy 'oh, it was nothing!' laugh, 'The Prodigy delivers something truly distressing. Puncutated by scenes of gruesome violence and a character with a fixation on amputating limbs (never explained, making it even more wicked), 'The Prodigy' would stand to stretch its R-rating to even ickier ends, but its psychological surprises are the ones that really stick."

Kate Erbland, IndieWire
 
"Setting the narrative primarily in the changing seasons from fall to winter adds subtle layers, reinforcing the shifting nature of the tortured young man’s personality. McCarthy and DP Bridger Nielson craft a distinctive aesthetic via a subdued, cool palette of blue and gray tones. They hold back from stylizing much of the imagery, but pepper in a few striking shots: Miles removes his skeleton face paint in front of a mirror, literally reflecting his dual psyches; Miles is framed against chinoiserie wallpaper, suggesting another persona lurking in the background. With jump scares blessedly kept to a minimum, composer Joseph Bishara’s signature sour strings weave innocuously into the film’s fabric. The resulting feeling is prickly, chilly, and disquieting."
 
Courtney Howard, Variety 

ROCKETMAN
- Matthew Margeson
 
"Hall's framing device works surprisingly well. The movie begins with a gorgeous slow instrumental version of the title song, as Elton bursts through a doorway haloed in celestial light and decked out in sequins and feathers as a fiery red-winged devil. He takes his seat in that incongruous getup among a therapy group at a posh rehab facility, where he proceeds to list his many addictions, from drugs and alcohol to sex and shopping, also dropping in issues with bulimia and anger management."
 
David Rooney, The Hollywood Reporter
 

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

Heard: Star Trek: The Next Generation: The Best of Both Worlds (Jones), The Eyes of My Mother (Loh), Downsizing (Kent), The Amazing Mr. Blunden (Bernstein), XXX: Return of Xander Cage (Tyler/Lydecker), Love Never Dies (Lloyd Webber), The 9th Life of Louis Drax (Watson), Nymphs and Satyr/Concerto for Organ, Harp and Strings/Concerto da Camera/Two Yuletide Pieces (Hanson), Charlotte's Web (Elfman), The French Connection Collection (Ellis, Fiedel), Devil (Velazquez), Milano Odia: La Polizia No Puo' Sparare (Morricone), Buffy the Vampire Slayer (various), Star Trek: The Next Generation: Tin Man, et al (Chattaway), The Mummy (Goldsmith), Mister Moses (Barry), A Time for Singing (Morris), Mathis der Maler/Trauermusik/Symphonic Metamorphosis (Hindemith), Maniac (Romer), Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Collection Vol. 2 (various), Apocalypto (Horner), Outlander: Season 2 (McCreary), The Impossible (Velazquez), Outlander: Season 3 (McCreary), Allonsanfan (Morricone), The Boss Baby (Zimmer/Mazzaro), Howards End (Muhly), Platoon (Delerue)

Read: Riding the Rap, by Elmore Leonard

Seen: Since I've been spending so much more time at home for reasons that are probably obvious to everyone (and reasons shared by nearly everyone -- and even more so in this week of widespread civil unrest), I have had a lot of time to look in my old files, and was pleased to find an old screening schedule from San Franciso's Strand Theatre, where I spent a lot of time from 1979 to 1982. I can't say it was my favorite place to see a movie -- the clientele seemed to be largely from the nearby Tenderloin neighborhood, and not necessarily people I wanted to hang out with after the films -- but it did give me the chance to see a lot of great films on the big screen (an opportunity I miss more than ever right now, again for obvious reasons). Sundays were usually triple features, and on one particularly memorable Sunday in the fall of 1979, I was at that theater from around 11:00 am to 7:00 pm seeing, all for the first time, Winter Kills, The Godfather and Chinatown. (There may also have been a Sunday triple feature of Five Million Years to Earth, On Her Majesty's Secret Service and The Final Countdown; if so, I didn't stick around to see The Final Countdown for a second time).

Watched: Columbo ("Fade In to Murder," "Old Fashioned Murder," "The Bye-Bye Sky High I.Q. Murder Case"), Westworld ("Contrapasso"), From the Earth to the Moon ("For Miles and Miles"), Sherlock Holmes and the Secret Weapon, Columbo ("Try and Catch Me," "How to Dial a Murder")

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Today in Film Score History:
September 21
Chico Hamilton born (1921)
Gene Forrell died (2005)
Geoffrey Burgon died (2010)
Herman Stein records his score for the Lost in Space episode "There Were Giants in the Earth" (1965)
Laurence Rosenthal wins the first of three consecutive Emmys, for Peter the Great; Arthur B. Rubinstein wins the Emmy for his Scarecrow and Mrs. King episode score “We’re Off to See the Wizard” (1986)
Mason Daring born (1949)
Recording sessions begin on James Newton Howard’s score for Alive (1992)
Robert O. Ragland records his score for The New Adventures of Wonder Woman episode “Hot Wheels” (1978)
Roman Vlad died (2013)
Walter Scharf records his score for the Mission: Impossible episode “Old Man Out” (1966)
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