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Everything posted by KK

  1. Lol are we still trying to pin merit to the Nazgul/Gondor Reborn fiasco with some far-fetched leitmotivic rationalization theory? Thought we were past that by now...
  2. It was fun. Light rock with Beltrami’s usual Midwest twang. Didn’t think it was particularly memorable though.
  3. - Managed to catch a couple of films at TIFF this last week. Some good, some not so good... Ford v Ferrari Not quite the thriller that the trailer promised. It's your average, sentimental sports flick, just with fancy cars and Christian Bale. It's perfectly watchable and handsomely produced but pretty vanilla. Bale's quirky performance and some fun race sequences make it a decent ride. Honey Boy Shia LaBeouf's semi-autobiographical screenplay brought to life with director Alma Har'el's restrained, slightly impressionistic touch. It's a little unfocused but it casts a sympathetic light to LaBeouf's public meltdowns by dramatizing his childhood trauma. And it works, largely because of the brilliant kid who plays a young LaBeouf (he also stars in Ford v Ferrari). That kid is going to be a star. LaBeouf is also quite excellent as his father. I'm not sure if it works as a way to validate his past behaviour, but hopefully it allows him to do more good work. Uncut Gems Every now and then, the industry comes up with an excuse to remind us why Adam Sandler is a brilliant actor. The Safdie brothers live up the task with their follow-up to their smash indie-darling Good Times, following a wickedly funny series of mishaps by an all-too ambitious jewellery vendor. It's dark, anxiety-inducing and laugh-out funny. Hope Sandler gets some well-deserved Oscar buzz with this. Lucy in the Sky What a strange strange film. Noah Hawley, whose gift for witty visual storytelling (re: Fargo), seems to stumble awkwardly around putting together a feature film based on what's essentially a tabloid piece. Somewhere in this mess of overcooked visuals (drawing on what he played with in Legion, but with less logic - Sam Esmail was way better at this stuff in Homecoming), kitschy dialogue and half-assed metaphors (prepare for lots of eye rolling at the butterfly stuff) is a good Portman performance. But it's hard to tell when the film can't quite make up its mind between being an absurdist, over-the-top satire and earnest psycho-drama. Jeff Russo's score is basically First Man-lite. Part of me still likes some of the more ridiculous parts (like the ending), but it's a half-hearted mess with an identity crisis. A Hidden Life Hallelujah! This film is proof that Malick and his mythos thrives best in nature, as his last few duds can attest. Returning to a coherent narrative structure, and a more grounded setting, Malick returns to form with this moving portrait of a man facing a crisis of faith. This is what he's best at. All his familiar questions and lines of inquiry return, but is made all the more potent by August Diehl and Valerie Pachner as the leads. This might be the first romance that Malick has successfully sold to me. A Hidden Life is not as obviously flashy as Tree of Life and other Lubezki-driven works with its visual beauty. It aims for a far more pensive quality, and plays with darkness and light in wonderful ways, especially for a film where the protagonist is essentially locked up in a chamber for half of its duration. But don't let that fool you, there are some gobsmacking gorgeous shots. Of course, Malick cynics will not have their minds changed here. Expect plenty of montages of airy, swooning shots galore. He’s not really doing anything new. But A Hidden Life just validates for me, that the more expansive, "non-linear" quality to Malick's storytelling cultivates an extraordinarily emotional experience in the right room. The powerful scenes and ruminations near the film's end were accompanied by much sniffling and man-tears in the cinema. A Hidden Life is Malick's Silence, just with a more humanist lens. If he only had the guts to cut about 30-40 min from the anemic first act, this could have been a truly brilliant film. But as it is, it's very good stuff. Oh and James Newton Howard's score is rather lovely, and from what I could tell, largely preserved in the film. It's led by his familiar Village-esque violin writing and a lovely motif that sounds like something out of Kung Fu Panda. The rest of the film was scored with Pärt, Gorecki and some choral hymns I couldn't recognize. I look forward to hearing it on album.
  4. Happy birthday Stu and a happy belated to Jay! Hope you both had a great one!
  5. One of Williams' finest and the peak of some of Williams' most impressionistic musings. But the real treasure is the concert suite, which is one of Williams' career best works. It just loses some of the more delicate touch of the OST. Specifically:
  6. Meh. Couldn't stand Hacksaw Ridge. But I do think Gibson is talented, and doesn't need more Hollywood shunning.
  7. I might be in Barcelona around early November! So we'll just be missing each other.
  8. It's average, tried and tired territory. I'd rather listen to Angela's Ashes any day. Nope. To answer the thread: 1) The BFG 2) The Book Thief 3) The Post The BFG has colour, The Book Thief is an elegant recollection of Williams' usual dramatic devices and The Post is mostly inconsequential filler music.
  9. It might be my favourite Scorsese of the last couple of ones.
  10. I’m surprised by how much I’m enjoying the Dark Crystal series actually.
  11. This. Also how painfully obvious that most film music rarely aim for more than functionality. Too many hours of organized sound that purely exist to get buried under the CG and sound effects. Whereas something like classical music always works with an intention of its own, and relies on autonomous structure to make its point (at least the good stuff does). I just don’t have much to learn and enjoy from film music these days. But like Grey, the good stuff still does it for me. And every now and then, I’ll find myself surprised by how much I’m taken by a score (old or new), that just pops up in shuffle mode on my phone or Spotify.
  12. It’s too much of an “info-dump” movie...and tried to compensate with overwhelming style. But I still kind of liked it. Bale was great, and the score was good.
  13. The original film is just all-around rough around the edges. But it’s so out there that it has a fantastic life of its own. Same goes for the music, even though it’s mostly one of those 80s mono-thematic scores (yes, I know the love theme exists, but the film mostly coasts on the main theme). The music has no real personality in the tv series whatsoever, other than the occasional feel-good moments which Pemberton’s power chords are functional enough for. But you eventually forget about it in the background. It’s a shame though. On the second episode, and with this kind of attention to detail, this could have seriously benefitted from some LOTR-level sonic world-building.
  14. Yeah, I get that. But it makes it really exhausting to try anything new these days. I don't really want to dig through 60 minutes of generic drones, loops, stingers and meandering chords to get to about 10 minutes of good to decent material. And people just write film music differently nowadays too. At least Williams still designs and filters set-pieces that focus on musicality specifically for presentation rather than the more functional-driven stuff. Zimmer does the same too, for the most part. All the new kids on the block just throw in every mockup, MIDI and scrap files on their PC and package it into a 2 hour OST that says very little as a whole...it's music without real architecture.
  15. Thor's not entirely wrong though. The whole sessions' dump mentality of most commercial film music albums does a great disservice to these scores. Album curation and presentation is a skill. And by virtue of the scoring process for most blockbuster films, and television shows (especially the latter), there's a large bulk of generic filler music that says nothing. Composers and producers need to be more mindful of how they're reflecting and presenting their work. It's a big reason why I can't get into most modern film music.
  16. But didn't the prologue state that the Skeksis were an alien race that befriended Aughra or something? And from my memory, the crystal became "corrupted" the moment it cracked...and I assumed the crystal was all well and good when they were left to the Skeksis. So something about the prologue didn't add up with all that. But I'm sure the series will address this in some form or another... Lovely theme, that gets recycled a few times by Jones in his later scores. But to answer your question, no. All we hear is a 30 sec flash of the original theme with the title card.
  17. It’s never “dark” for “darkness” sake. It’s a show with personality and a sense of humour.
  18. Checked out the first episode. I liked it. Some ugly TV digital sheen aside (especially in the CGI), it's pretty impressive to look at. But also, it's amazing how much fuller the Dark Crystal world feels with a more committed, seasoned acting ensemble and better characterization. And I like how they've handled the world-building and mythology so, despite the somewhat didactic prologue. I do miss the Mystics though. Part of what made the original film kind of interesting was the idea that the Skeksis and the Mystics were two sides of the same coin, and together, flawed cosmic beings. Maybe they'll address that near the end. But it appears the Skeksis are their own thing and just generally evil. I do like seeing them as the entitled, but venerated bourgeoisie and monarchs of the realm. Looking forward to the rest of the series.
  19. I'm genuinely curious hornist, is there anything that Williams has written that you don't think is brilliant or the unquestionable work of genius?
  20. The jarring, almost off-putting interval-jumps of Jones’ theme is exactly what makes it so striking and alien-like. It nailed the essence of the film’s strangeness, and one of the things that really stuck with me as a kid. On some level, it actually kind of scared me. I’ve only heard the one preview track that was shared here, and it sounded dull and serviceable. It doesn’t bring any of the strange images from that world to mind.
  21. I think you might be mistaking Williams leaning on old tools/vices for meaning and intentionality. Either way, the theme is boring.
  22. Well obviously...my point was just a broader remark on how Scorcese's latest films have been super indulgent in runtime, often to their detriment.
  23. Rainy evening calls for this haunting beauty...
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