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King Mark

The Themes and Motifs of Episode 3

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Themes and Motifs of Episode 3:

All in all,22 themes and motifs appear in RotS

A)New Themes:

1)Battle of the Heroes theme:Appears suddenly and exclusively for the duel between Obi Wan and Anakin on Mustafar.A grand operatic theme for the battle that takes place over the lava

2)The Sith Powers motif.A somber,mystical 7 note motif(heard only once in full) sometimes accompanied by eerie dissonant strings.This is one of the new motifs in RotS and appears quite a bit in the early part of the film.First as 2 notes during the reunion of Anakin and Padme after the ATS quote,then as Chancellor Palpatine asks Anakin to be his personnal representative on the council("They need you more than you know").We then hear the full 7 note Sith motif as Palpatine explains the story of Darth Plagueis at the opera.It is then played with choir against a backdrop of mystical sith lore wall sculptures in Palpatine's office as he reveals himself as a Sith Lord to Anakin and that the dark side can save Padme.We hear a more extended version on Mustafar one last time as Padme confronts Anakin("Obi Wan,he told me terrible things,that you turned to the dark side...").None of this is on the c.d.To me this motif is a wasted opportunity and could have been developped into a majestic cue.I think it represents the Sith's special abilities to prevent physical death or create life with the midichlorians.I remember Williams saying he was going to mix the Force Theme with The Emperor's Theme,maybe that was it.

3)The Betrayal Theme:A new Lamentation composed by Williams was composed to represent the tragedy of Anakin turning to the dark side and the Jedi beeing decimated.A full choir version is heard during the Jedi purge sequence,and then a quiter orchestral version is heard as Anakin and Obi-Wan face off on Mustafar before their light saber duel.The Immolation music seems derived from it.

4)General Grevious Theme:A march like theme with rolling string passages accompanies Grevious as he moves about in several scenes.

5)Escape Motif.A new percussion and brass military motif heard in in one sequence as Bail Organa leaves Coruscant on the Tantive 4 and Obi Wan escapes the clones and leaves Utapau to join him.Sounds like a motif that could have been written for the original trilogy.Actually it reminds me of an old Lost in Space score motif.Sadly we don't hear it again.

6)Mustafar motif:Williams introduces some new recurring bellicose brass fanfares for the lava planet of Mustafar.They appear in the cues Enter Lord Vader and Anakin's Dark Deeds and some bits of unreleased Mustafar music as Padme runs to Anakin

7)Desperation Motif.A situationnal motif,only used in the cue It Can't Be(second part of Anakin's Dark Deeds) plays as Obi Wan tells Padme Anakin has turned to the Dark Side.

B)Recurring Themes

1)The Force Theme:One of the most prevalent recurring themes in RotS,it goes through several permutations through the score.It has a militaristic variation given in the opening space battle,then a few subdued ones in dialogue underscore cues.We hear a triumphant fanfaric version as Obi Wan travels to the planet Utapau.A big operatic version accompanied by choir is heard twice during the ObiWan and Anakin duel on Mustafar.Then some beautiful variations are heard throughout the finale of the film,which are absent from the c.d.There is also a completely inappropriate use of the theme tracked from The Tide Turns in TPM when Anakin crash lands General Grevious ship.

2)The Rebel Fanfare:Appears once in the movie,when R2-D2 blasts the buzz droid off the wing of Anakin's spaceship in the opening Space Battle.That segment is unreleased.

3)Luke's Theme :Heard faintly on an underscore track of the OST(Grevious and the Droids),but dropped from the film.It is then given a warm rendition as Luke is handed over to aunt Beru at the end of the movie.

4)Leia's Theme:Played twice in the movie.First on solo horn when ObiWan,Yoda and Bail discuss plans for the twins,and then as Bail arrives on Alderaan.They seem like brief quotes from the concert version.

5)Anakin's Theme:Appears once in the score.A brief quotation of the opening statement is heard during the cue Anakin's Dream scene,but dropped from the c.d. track

6)The Emperors Theme:This is actually used a lot.Low string choirless quotations of it appears in scenes when Anakin has discussions with Palpatine early in the film.Then the theme is played repeatedly in it's fully developped form with low male choir (in a similar way to the emperor's arrival cue in RotJ) in the scene just after Mace's death as the now horribly deformed Palpatine puts his cloak over his head and Anakin pledges allegiance to the dark side.It returns briefly as Palpatine announces the Galactic Empire in the senate and when the Emperor rescues Anakin on Mustafar.

7)Across the Stars.The love theme from Attack of the clones plays several time in the film.First in the Reunion of Anakin and Padme and then a beautiful violin rendition in the sequence of Anakin's Dream.It's fainly heard during Padme's Ruminations and then lastly on Mustafar just after Padme lands her ship and stares out the window.All the quotes played through out the film are relatively subdued and at times foreboding

8)Darth Vader's Theme(The Imperial March).Also heard quite a bit in the film,but mostly only in very brief subdued statements.First as the jedi council discuss Anakin's situation,a brief statement as Anakin is named Darth Vader by Palpatine.We hear another militaristic quote accompanying some pre AT-ST roaming on Kashyyk.Another quote on Mustafar when Padme confronts Anakin.A re-recorded version from The Duel in Empire Strikes Back play in the film as Yoda faces off with Palpatine in his office.We then hear a quote as the Helmet is sealed on Vader's head.Lastly,it plays in counterpoint to the funeral music as we see vader on the bridge of a star destroyer.

9)Yoda's Theme:The theme has 2 beautiful renditions in the scene when Yoda bids farewell to the Wookies on Kasshhik.The orchestration is reminescent of the goodbye scene in E.T. A very brief downbeat quote is heard when he flees Coruscant on Bail's speeder("Failed,I have")

10)Coruscant "He is the Chosen One" Fanfare:A transitionnal fanfare used in TPM is re-recorded and used for ObiWan's arrival on the Tantive 4,but it was meant to go elsewhere.

11)Prequel Funeral Music.The Theme used for GuiGon's funeral in TPM is re-recorded almost identically for Padme's Death (some extra string counterpoint) and a brand new and poignant unreleased orchestral version is played during Padme's Funeral counterpointed with the Force Theme and The Imperial March.

12)Mystery Motif:A motif that sounds very similar to the Mystery Motif heard in Return to Tatooine/unreleased shmi's funeral underscore in AotC is heard in the the second half of the c.d. track Palpatine's Teachings.In the film it scores a scene where ObiWan and Anakin are discussing the Jedi council politics in a hallway.When I saw the film I thought it was tracked music from AotC but it is on the RotS c.d.

13)Anakin's Secondary motif:An ambiguous sorrowfull horn motif related to Anakin that appears a few times in Attack of the Clones.Somewhat confusingly similar to Shmi's Theme but it never sounds exactly the same each time it's played.It appears here in the c.d. tracks Palpatine's Teachings and at the beginning of Enter Lord Vader just after the opening brass fanfare.

c)Tracked Themes:

1)The Trade Federation March:Appears For the Wookie War sequence(appropriate I guess)

2)The Arena Battle March:Appears when Anakin leads clones to the Jedi Temple(inappropriate and unacceptable.I suspect Williams might have written original music for this that was replaced.

3)Duel of the Fates:Concert version from TPM tracked for the Yoda-Emperor duel.New choir recording?Also,some of the choir chants that appear in Anakin's Dark Deeds seem to have been taken from the same Sanscrit poem that inspired Duel of the Fates,so the pieces may be connected that way tough musically they seem thematically different.

Apart from the horrible edits of the tracked The Tide Turns from TPM,It appears that most of the cues that Williams recorded made it into the film unedited.I only notice slight looping in some of the Grevious music.Those scenes must have been finished the last.Most of the cues are mixed too low but that's another problem,but at least the score is not so butchered this time.It it unknown if Williams composed original music for Anakin leading the clones into the Jedi temple,but I suspect he might have written some dark choral passage for that scene that was replaced by the Arena music from Clones.

K.M.

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Duel of the Fates is there, and I do not think it is tracked.

The Emperor's theme is also played during the conversation between Yoda, Obi-Wan and Mace on the Clone Troop Transport taking Yoda to his battle group to Kashyyyk.

The Force theme becomes very much Obi-Wan's theme for much of the film, as it was for much of Episode IV.

There is definitely some themeage (my invention) during Mace's death. Unfortunetely, at the moment we cannot properly hear it (the Emperor's "unlimited poooooooweeeeeerrrrr" is just too loud).

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8)The Betrayal Theme:A new Lamentation composed by Williams was composed to represent the tragedy of Anakin turning to the dark side and the Jedi beeing decimated.A full choir version is heard during the Jedi purge sequence,and then a quiter orchestral version is heard as Anakin and Obi-Wan face off on Mustafar before their light saber duel.The Immolation music seems derived from it.

Nice connection and analysis. ;)

16)Desperation Motif.A situationnal motif,only used in the cue It Can't Be(second part of Anakin's Dark Deeds) plays as Obi Wan tells Padme Anakin has turned to the Dark Side.

I've always thought of this as more of an "Anakin's Descent" theme, but that was before I saw the movie and was hoping it would pop up in a few other cues. One of my favorites.

17)New Lord Vader Fanfare(?):There seems to be several dark fanfares that may related to one and the other in the cues Enter Lord Vader and Anakin's Dark Deeds.Maybe they have a thematic relation to other parts of the score too but I can't quite get a handle on it.

I thought this for a while too but after listening to them back to back I couldn't find any connection. The fanafare in Enter Lord Vader is more of a Mustafar motif, kind of like the Kamino fanfare in Episode II.

18)Mystery Motif(?):A motif that sounds very similar to the Mystery Motif heard in Return to Tatooine in AotC is heard in the the second half of the c.d. track Palpatine's Teachings.In the film it scores a scene where ObiWan and Anakin are discussing the Jedi council politics in a hallway.When I saw the film I thought it was tracked music from AotC but it is on the RotS c.d.

This reminds me more of that motif that appears in the unreleased Anakin's Confession in Episode II, a speeded up variation. But I see the connection to the Mystery motif too.

Great job, KM. 8O

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22)Duel of the Fates:Concert version from TPM tracked for the Yoda-Emperor duel.New choir recording?

It's also tracked into other scenes because of the action cues, e.g. "Anakin's Crash Landing" and "The Tide Turns." I also hear the choir singing "Korah!" in "Anakin's Dark Deeds," so...

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Here are some Sanskrit words that may fit with "Grievous are the crimes of the Empire":

aghaM = grievous sins

yasya = whose

raashhtraM = empire

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I have listened and listened but keep missing the quote of Anakin's theme. I assume it is in the cue "Breaking News and Anakin's Dream" from the JackChapple complete score, and I have tried to hear it like 5 times without success. Can someone give me a cue time?

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I think he forgot to put it it in...or that I'm missing the file after the nightmare containing the second part of track 2.I clearly heard it at the cinema

K.M.

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I caught it the first time. Much more interesting than in the beginning of Clones (which, judging by its absence from the recently released videogame and its similarity to several Menace cues, may be tracked).

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I caught it the first time.

Well bully for you. :mrgreen:

Much more interesting than in the beginning of Clones (which, judging by its absence from the recently released videogame and its similarity to several Menace cues, may be tracked).

It's not. The last note of that video game clip matches the last note of the statement of Anakin's theme in that cue, showing the edit. But I agree about the more interesting part, the Episode III statement is different from any other.

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Very good summary of the themes. I didn't notice the Sith one but when I watch the DVD maybe I'll hear that. I think the funeral music is the most disappointing. Even the pretty newer version uses the force theme like the old one and I'm not sure it belongs there right at the moment they show Darth Vader. And with the sequence where Vader awakens, I feel like something original would have worked better though its not bad as it is. I can't help but think Lucas had a very particular idea of using that music there. But that's just a minor gripe.

- Adam

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1)Battle of the Heroes theme:Appears suddenly and exclusively for the duel between Obi Wan and Anakin on Mustafar.A grand operatic theme for the battle that takes place over the lava  

this one is incomplete KM, Battle of the Heroes is for Obi-Wan and Yoda, not Anakin, as our heroes OB1 and Yoda battle Anakin, and D.S.

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But ObiWan still calls him Anakin in their not-so-dramatic arguement.

Well it's on the main page now.Thank you Ricard.

K.M.Glad he can do articles to avoid dealing with the more important stuff in his life

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There is no Anakin in the duels, only Darth Vader.

If he ain't in the mask, he ain't Darth Vader, besides no one living knew his sith name.

There are heroes on both sides,remember?

no, there are only two heroes, Obi Wan and Yoda, Anakin isn't a hero anymore, he's a child murdering villian who must die for his crimes

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no, there are only two heroes, Obi Wan and Yoda, Anakin isn't a hero anymore, he's a child murdering villian who must die for his crimes

I agree with King Mark. He couldn't have called it "Battle between the Hero and the Former Hero", could he. The phrase "Battle of the Heroes" refers to two men battling each other I believe.

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There is no Anakin in the duels, only Darth Vader.

If he ain't in the mask, he ain't Darth Vader, besides no one living knew his sith name.

Hologram recording:

Palpatine: "You have done well my new apprentice, now Lord Vader go and bring peace to the Empire"

Later:

Yoda: "the boy you trained, gone he is, consumed by Darth Vader"

Luke, who isnt against the interpretation of Kenobi and Yoda being the heroes, by the way

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On the complete RotS score edit by JackChapple, track 11 "Fortunetelling", I also hear the Betrayel Theme at about 0:50. I think it's the Betrayel theme, or it at least sounds very much like it. Where in the movie is the scene for this music?

Sander

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Has the film version 'Funeral pyre for a Jedi' from ROTS any relation with the Funeral music from the prequels (Quigon, padme, vader's birth)

Im thinking about the part on both cues that continues the force theme.

I think as cerrabore said that there is a korah in 'Anakin Dark Deeds'. Grievous are the crimes of the empire is the first chours heard, later there is an isolated word at 1:16 (aaaaaaaaaaah korah! or something ;) )

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There is no Anakin in the duels, only Darth Vader.

If he ain't in the mask, he ain't Darth Vader, besides no one living knew his sith name.

;)

Maybe you fell asleep watching the movie, but Anakin becomes Darth Vader long before the suit.

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Perhaps I found a bit of the "musical fun" Williams had with Anakins Theme:

At 1:23 in Battle of the Heroes, the melody played sounds very similar to Anakin's theme to me. Maybe I'm trying to hard to find Anakin's Theme in the soundtrack, but this somehow stands out to me as a very good possiblity of the mentioned "musical fun".

Sander

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The B section of "Battle of the Heroes" has ... nothing to do with Anakin's theme, as far as I can tell. :?

However, you WILL find this theme in the film: after Anakin's nightmare, he walks down to the balcony of Padme's apartment, and there Williams employs a twisted, but clear, version of Anakin's theme.

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