La-La Land has announced two upcoming releases expected the week after next -- a three-disc set ("Volume One"!) of music from Irwin Allen's '60s sci-fi TV series THE TIME TUNNEL
, featuring music composed for the series by Robert Drasnin, Lyn Murray, Paul Sawtell
, and that other guy, what's his name...oh yes, John Williams
; and Fred Mollin
's score for the seagoing slasher sequel FRIDAY THE 13TH PART VIII: JASON TAKES MANHATTAN
(the only film in the original series for which Harry Manfredini did not recieve full or shared scoring credit).
For those who may be interested in what exactly constitutes an award-qualifying film for the upcoming Oscars, the Academy has announced the Reminder List of eligible films for the 2020 awards (which includes films released through the end of February 2021). Nominations will be announced on March 15th, and the awards will be handed out on April 25th.
Fun fact: last Christmas's big DC Comics superhero spectacular is officially listed as WW84. I guess the studio used up their allotment of letters on Birds of Prey and The Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn.
CDS AVAILABLE THIS WEEK
Ulysse 31 - Denny Crockett, Ike Egan, Shuki Levy, Haim Saban, Seji Suzuki - CSC
IN THEATERS TODAY
Raya and the Last Dragon
, the latest animated feature from Disney, opens in theaters this week with a score by James Newton Howard. No score CD has been announced yet, but both Mulan
had score CDs released overseas, so there's always hope.
Adventures in Dinosaur City - Frederic Ensign Teetsel - Dragon's Domain
His Dark Materials: Season Two - Lorne Balfe - Silva
The Mark Snow Collection Vol. 3: Southern Gothic - Mark Snow - Dragon's Domain
Vampirella - Joel Goldsmith - Dragon's Domain
Friday the 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan - Fred Mollin - La-La Land
The Time Tunnel: Volume One - Robert Drasnin, Lyn Murray, Paul Sawtell, John Williams - La-La Land
The Tattooed Torah - Daniel Alcheh - Notefornote
The Bear (re-issue) - Philippe Sarde - Music Box
I Malamondo - Ennio Morricone - Sugar/CAM
Mondo Cane - Riz Ortolani - Sugar/CAM
The Serpent (re-issue) - Ennio Morricone - Music Box
THIS WEEK IN FILM MUSIC HISTORY
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
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
March 5 - Gustavo Santaolalla wins his first Oscar, for the Brokeback Mountain score (2006)
March 5 - Jacques Loussier died (2019)
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
March 7 - Sidney Cutner
’s score for The Invaders
episode “The Condemned” is recorded (1967)
March 7 - Alex Somers born (1984)
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
March 7 - Gordon Parks died (2006)
March 7 - Michael Giacchino wins his first Oscar for Up (2010)
March 8 - Dick Hyman born (1927)
March 8 - Franz Waxman begins recording his score for Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1941)
March 8 - Bruce Broughton born (1945)
March 8 - Jerry Goldsmith records his score for the pilot to Dr. Kildare (1961)
March 8 - Alex North begins recording his unused score for Sounder (1972)
March 8 - Jerry Goldsmith
begins recording orchestral cues for Logan's Run
March 8 - Dave Grusin
begins recording his score for Murder by Death
March 8 - Paul Chihara begins recording his score, adapted from Gilbert & Sullivan, for The Bad News Bears Go to Japan (1978)
March 8 - William Walton died (1983)
March 8 - James Newton Howard begins recording his score for Dave (1993)
March 8 - George Martin died (2016)
March 9 - John Cale born (1940)
March 9 - Arlon Ober born (1943)
March 9 - Mark Mancina born (1957)
March 9 - Bernard Herrmann begins recording his score for Psycho (1960)
March 9 - Deborah Lurie born (1974)
March 9 - Jane Antonia Cornish born (1975)
March 9 - Bill Conti begins recording his score for Wrongfully Accused (1998)
March 9 - Richard Stone died (2001)
March 9 - Coleridge-Taylor Perkinson died (2004)
March 10 - Arthur Honegger born (1892)
March 10 - Angela Morley/Wally Stott born (1924)
March 10 - Charles Previn, head of the Universal Music Department, wins the Score Oscar for One Hundred Men and a Girl, for which no composer is credited (1938)
March 10 - Brad Fiedel born (1951)
March 10 - Marc Donahue born (1953)
March 10 - Uwe Fahrenkrog-Petersen born (1960)
March 10 - Michel Legrand records his score for Summer of ’42 (1971)
March 10 - Jerry Goldsmith
begins recording his score for The Swarm
March 10 - Bruce Broughton begins recording his score for Honey, I Blew Up the Kid (1992)
March 11 - Gottfried Huppertz born (1887)
March 11 - Astor Piazzolla born (1921)
March 11 - Recording sessions begin for Bronislau Kaper's score to Lili (1952)
March 11 - David Newman born (1954)
March 11 - Rob Simonsen born (1978)
March 11 - Ron Jones records his score for the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode "Heart of Glory" (1988)
March 11 - Paul Dunlap died (2010)
March 11 - Francois-Eudes Chanfrault died (2016)
March 11 - Keith Emerson died (2016)
DID THEY MENTION THE MUSIC?
AMERICAN SKIN - Henry Jackman
"Judging by Henry Jackman’s mournful and melodramatic horn score, it seems like this is shaping up to be an intimate rendering of a tragically familiar tale. The writing is streaked with the same kind of holy clumsiness that once made '7th Heaven' such a hit, but Parker radiates enough raw earnestness to make it work. Whatever his failings as a person, he’s always been an innately charismatic screen presence (go watch 'Beyond the Lights'). That warmth, however, has its limits."
David Ehrlich, IndieWire
BREAKING NEWS IN YUBA COUNTY - Jeff Beal
"One of the cringiest moments of Parker’s directorial debut, 'The Birth of a Nation,' involved playing Nina Simone’s 'Strange Fruit' over footage of lynched men, as though the visual weren’t horrifying enough on its own, or as if matching that song to that footage wasn’t redundant and obvious. His instinct for overplaying the musical cues continues in 'American Skin,' with composer Henry Jackman ('Detective Pickachu') bombastically underlining and italicizing moments that don’t need the extra emphasis."
Alonso Duralde, The Wrap
BLITHE SPIRIT - Simon Boswell
"The framing is bafflingly inert: there are all these long shots, with people just standing around talking to each other. Charles and Ruth's house looks like an Art Deco-'Miami Vice' mashup, and none of the interiors are explored for their comedic potential. Everything feels like an old-fashioned sit-com, with people entering and leaving rooms, nothing 'added,' no comedic bits, no character business, no inventive blocking. A couple of old-fashioned pratfalls would have been welcome. Music plays underneath every scene, adding to the bland generic vibe."
Sheila O'Malley, RogerEbert.com
"As the police detective who sees through Sue's story, Regina Hall rises above the rising tide of cartoonishness with some smooth double takes and no-nonsense energy. The rest of the cast's energy is more on the order of deeply unmodulated playacting -- Wanda Sykes as Petey's furniture-store boss, Ellen Barkin as her girlfriend, the diminishing returns of Awkwafina's menacing gangster routine. There are also valiant attempts to make random and unconvincing characters ring true (Samira Wiley as Petey's pregnant-with-twins partner). The assemblage of bad hair and the jaunty score signal that we're not supposed to take any of this seriously. Still, it's distracting when the costumes and interiors have more character-defining subtlety than the barely dimensional characters themselves."
Sheri Linden, The Hollywood Reporter
EMBATTLED - Michael Brook
DEAD PIGS - Andrew Orkin
"Demonstrating a light touch -- underscored by a whimsy-leaning score and overtly comic moments, but never delving into flimsiness or farce -- Yan handles her chosen topic, and the tapestry of tales it’s woven through, with care. Coupled with the naturalistic tones prominent in cinematographer Federico Cesca’s ('Patti Cake$') lensing, it’s an approach that mostly resonates. It may, however, struggle to turn its World Cinema Dramatic Competition berth into anything beyond modest festival and eventual streaming play."
Sarah Ward, Screen Daily
"Though he’s still an academically struggling high school senior, Jett’s fledgling MMA career starts picking up steam, thanks to his father’s string-pulling. Rather than bringing them together, the teen’s early success only damages his already hot-and-cold relationship with Cash: perhaps because it highlights the older man’s impending career downturn, perhaps more simply because it diverts attention from him for a moment or two. The building aggression between them must come to a head: a climactic clash looms, both inevitable and preposterous, as 'Embattled' abandons any pretense of gritty realism and dials up the knucklehead wish-fulfillment as hard as it (and Michael Brook’s thumping, crashing synthetic score) can go."
Guy Lodge, Variety
I CARE A LOT - Marc Canham
"The film does not suffer much for these slight incongruities. 'I Care a Lot' glides like a classic studio thriller thanks to top-notch production values, from the bright colors that explode off the screen to a synthesized score that throbs tensely throughout. And, of course, there’s the Rosamund Pike factor. It’s not that anyone else in the movie isn’t good. But no one ever quite matches the unrivaled brilliance of Pike when given a clear runway to strut her skills. Seeing her in peak form nimbly navigating the tonal minefield of this late stage capitalism critique is an absolute delight."
Marshall Shaffer, The Playlist
LAND - Ben Sollee, Time For Three
"When Jennifer is taken and we see the geriatric abduction process start to finish, Blakeson cranks the discomfort. It’s despicable stuff, made as insufferable as possible by its actresses’ shit-eating grins and the electronica behind it all thrumming like a headache. Slo-mo montages -- with the over-the-top colors and stretched smiling faces of an uncomfortable dream that doesn’t click as a nightmare until you’re in too deep to get yourself out -- take us through the nuts and bolts. The hyper-styled crooks are shot with an ethereal glow by cinematographer Doug Emmett, whose blend of light and color create a harsh brightness just as off-putting as the soundscape. It takes the tropical palette of retirement doc 'Some Kind of Heaven' and makes it far more sinister: More 'Escape from Tomorrow' than Disney World."
Jacob Oller, Paste Magazine
"The twisty acceleration of reciprocal payback moves is gruesome fun, if not always entirely plausible. But Blakeson and editor Mark Eckersley keep the pace zippy and the plotting taut, despite its density of incident. The sinister techno score by Marc Canham also helps maintain the momentum, while DP Doug Emmett ('Sorry to Bother You') provides a sleek visual canvas."
David Rooney, The Hollywood Reporter
"Aiding Bukowski’s sun-dappled visuals is the score by Ben Sollee and Time for Three, a lush collection of folk-soaked cues that both immerse viewers in Edee’s neo-Western environment and touch on the aching, unrelenting pain Wright stuffs into every wounded gesture and expression. Plucked strings and double bass permeate the score’s texture, the occasional discordant string leaving a pang of unease in the film’s otherwise-lush textures -- echoing, presumably, Edee’s aimless drifting through the rocky currents of her grief."
Clint Worthington, Consequence of Sound
"The movie is so visually striking, it’s no surprise that Wright worked with two top editors, Anne McCabe ('A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood') and Mikkel E.G. Nielsen ('Sound of Metal'). The strings-heavy score from composers Ben Sollee and Time for Three also offers effective support, as it fluctuates in discreet unison with Edee’s experiences."
Elizabeth Weitzman, The Wrap
"For a time, the film is wordless as, with the everyday business of her survival, Edee tries to distract herself from the everyday emptiness of her life. This is the 'All is Lost'- type film that initially 'Land' teases, a sinewy solo survival thriller, before then suggesting a more interior, psychodramatic approach as she starts to see her husband and son running alongside her through the forest or downstream fishing from the same bank. Then winter comes, and there’s a bear attack, which robs her of most of her food, and a strangely placed drone shot that, floating over the cabin accompanied by a particularly ominous stretch of Ben Sollee‘s score, even hints at nature-horror."
Jessica Kiang, The Playlist
"Elsewhere, the stirring minor-key string score is a fine match for this story's quiet directness and its yearning mix of calamity, beauty, deprivation and unexpected gifts. Without a drop of self-congratulatory 'enlightenment,' 'Land' occupies a wild terrain of ineffable tenderness."