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Last Build Date: Sun, 26 Feb 2012 18:04:14 -0500


Comment #333860 on Handicapping the Oscars: Best Score

Sun, 26 Feb 2012 18:04:14 -0500

Why can't they just acknowledge that they are inspired by, or borrowed from some other work, as one score writer did at the Oscars few years back? After all, it's just a movie.

Comment #333859 on Handicapping the Oscars: Best Score

Sun, 26 Feb 2012 17:59:02 -0500

I loved your show when you interviewed Alberto Iglesias. The music was the best part of Tinker.

Comment #333858 on Handicapping the Oscars: Best Score

Sun, 26 Feb 2012 17:57:10 -0500

The score for "War Horse" is a perfect embodiment of the visuals on the screen. Williams is a master at conveying the perfect emotions for a director's scenes without overpowering the film narrative. I loved "War Horse" and think Speilberg should be a contender for "Best Director". People will be watching "War Horse" long after "The Artist" has been forgotten and 3D has lost its appeal.

Comment #333850 on Handicapping the Oscars: Best Score

Sun, 26 Feb 2012 17:30:29 -0500

John Williams is a film composer with a large body of work. However, quantity does not mean quality. Only one work, in my qualified background of film music, stands out as much inspired, the score for the 1979 film "Dracula", and the other score are somewhat mediocre. Besides, there is a great deal of "lifting" and reworking thematic material from classical composers. Listen to the "Jaws" music track of "One Barrel Chase " and compare it with Ralph Vaughan Williams "A London Symphony - III. Scherzo" or, better yet, play the Vaughan Williams and view the barrel chase sequence from "Jaws" with the sound off. Does "Star Wars" music sound something like Holst and Stravinsky? It sure does. I could list many, many more examples "lifted" knowingly or subconsciously from classical compositions. Is John Williams the first to "lift" music from others? No. But he has done so much more than others. Take, for example, Miklos Rozsa's score for "Quo Vadis". His "Quo Vadis Domine?" (from Capitol album number ST-2837 "Miklos Rozsa conducts His Great Themes from Ben-Hur, El Cid, Quo Vadis and King of Kings reissued on Angel records) and Ottorino Respighi's "I pini della Via Appia" from "Pines of Rome". Now that’s a powerful piece of “lifting” or borrowing inspiration.

Comment #333805 on Handicapping the Oscars: Best Score

Sun, 26 Feb 2012 10:43:58 -0500

WAR HORSE is by far and away my top choice. It seems ironic that the Academy will vote to give the music score award to THE ARTIST when the music used for the most critical and moving part of the film is music from Bernard Herrmann's score for VERTIGO. There is a difference between using classical music for underscoring and using music from a previous and well known film. Last year's THE KING'S SPEECH made excellent use of Beethovin's 7th Symphony. We have no prior film to associate with that music. However, with THE ARTIST, we do have a classic film (VERTIGO) to associate with the Herrmann music, and some of us, when we hear this music, remember fondly very specific images from the film and the actors in the film (Kim Novak and James Stewart). The first time I saw THE ARTIST and this major scene scene toward the end of the film with the Herrmann music, I was taken out of THE ARTIST by the music. I did see the film again, and, being more prepared this time, could look at this scene a little differently, and begin to see why the director favored the Herrmann music over the music of his composer. The Herrmann music is superior to the score Ludovic Bource wrote for the scene, and it is interesting to see the Herrmann music work effectively for another film. You can hear the Bource music for this scene, "My Suicide," on THE ARTIST soundtrack. That being said, Bernard Herrmann would never have allowed this to happen. How times have changed. In 1942, when THE MAGNIFICENT AMBERSONS was taken away from Orson Welles and the ending of the film was rescored, Bernard Herrmann refused to allow his name be be on the credits. Tonight, it is quite likely that Ludovic Bource, should he win, will not even mention Bernard Herrmann's name despite the fact that the public's ultimte emotional responce to this film actually hinge's on the use of Bernard Herrmann's music from VERTIGO. Supported by the Herrmann music, we actually discover that we truly care about George Valentin.

Comment #333327 on Handicapping the Oscars: Best Score

Thu, 23 Feb 2012 18:03:01 -0500

I'm really looking forward to the Oscar program on Sunday and hearing the Oscar-nominated scores. My personal favorite score is "War Horse", and I would be thrilled if it won the award. I recently read an article by Dana where she briefly mentions that "The Artist" should not win for Best Original Score because it used some of Bernard Herrmann's music from "Vertigo". I would like to hear your thoughts on films repurposing older music. My view is that this is a minor infraction that doesn't diminish the achievement of "The Artist", however in principle I agree with Dana that a film which used existing music should not win an award for ORIGINAL score. Also to David & Dana: what was your favorite score from 2011 which was not nominated? Here is Dana's article which I referenced above: