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Posts posted by TheHouseholdCat

  1. I loved Contact, the book, yet I've never delved into more stuff by Sagan. Now I'm quite curious about Vangelis' music for Cosmos

    I think Contact shows pretty well which issues he was concerned about. And they basically left all that out in the film.

    The best part of it for me is the guy who he paid to pace out the distance between Alexandria and Syene, and that he managed to do it without any error significant enough to hurt the calculation.

    Sounded pretty amazing and exhausting to me.

    I love how Carl got all excited about the idea alone.

  2. 1) Interstellar

    2) Inception

    A great choice for the top 2. I watched Interstellar only very recently and was surprised how different the score was to Zimmer's usual scores.

    The Lion King is in my top 5, definitely. Iconic and well-deserved Oscar win.

    The Dark Knight was amazing too. I generally am a fan of Zimmer/Newton-Howard. So... This one is up there for me, too.

    My top 10 looks like this:

    1.) Interstellar

    2.) The Lion King

    3.) Inception (I only really love a couple of the cues, but for Johnny Marr alone, this is my number three.)

    4.) The Dark Knight

    5.) The DaVinci Code

    6.) Angels and Demons

    7.) Rain Man

    8.) Thelma and Louise

    9.) Sherlock Holmes

    10.) King Arthur

  3. Disliked the movie, it's just a bunch of american clichés... The closeted gay... pfff, that killed me.

    For me the strength of the film is between the lines. The satire alone would just be a satire. It wouldn't be as memorable.

    What I love about the film are the aesthetics. The cinematography and the score are both very minimalist. Both add so much to the film.

    It has become one of my favourite films. Every time I watch it again... It still hasn't lost any of its value.

    On the surface it might appear to be just another 90s flick. But the subtext and the way that the film draws in the viewer make it so worthwhile to me.

  4. Thomas keeps bringing up Bernard Herrmann in interviews. He has also mentioned John Williams in the past.

    A very important direct musical influence would be Rick Cox who has worked with Thomas since the 1980s. He worked on the electronics for The Rapture, he played saxophone on The Player, he provided lots of experimental guitar for Road To Perdition and played the banjo ukulele on American Beauty, just to name a few examples.

  5. Absolutely loving it, but then again I'm overly familiar with the scores QT used here. I like how he used recordings off his own LPs rather than clean masters, his reason in the liner notes being he wants us to experience the music as he first did.

    I also liked that. It enhanced the songs.

  6. I voted for 2-D and 48 fps. I didn't even know you could choose between 24 and 48 fps. Weird...

    But anyway... I find this 3-D trend appalling and 3-D doesn't make the film look more realistic and it doesn't look better and I like it when the film is not glued to my eyes.

  7. People are over-analysing Skyfall. It's a fun yarn with loads of British tourism product placement.

    It marks a return to the approach of not taking itself too seriously without being obnoxiously flippant. It's all fantasy. The ending was far more touching than even OHMSS.

    True, the ending was very touching. Without trying too hard. Because people actually cared about the character.

  8. You could do so many productive things rather than confine yourself to a state of anger over a movie.

    At the very least, consider writing an angry letter to Sam Mendes. Your words are wasted on us brain-dead worshippers of this movie....

    Which I'm going to go see a third time this weekend. TAKE MY MONEY MR. MENDES!

    Well, you do have a point. We'll have to blame Sam Mendes. As Newman has written at least a dozen lush orchestral scores, it can't be entirely his fault. Or maybe he just shouldn't try out something else because it's much safer to stay in his usual territory. Personally, I think that's what he should be given credit for. I think he did a good job at Bond and he's certainly never written anything like it before.

    Newman about the use of themes:

    "It’s not like you say, I need an M theme, I need a Severine theme. Sometimes that has to happen, but for me the creative process doesn’t quite work that way. You find something and that leads to something else. There are elements of story in some of these cues and some of those lead to M because she’s part of the story. By the end you’re going, does Silva have a theme? Is it more of a motif? It’s probably wrong to think that a character needs a melody associated with him or her, but oftentime it does and in the case of Bond it does more often than not."

    This guy doesn't understand James Bond *at all*.

    He's squeezing Bond into the confines of the general rules of film scoring while they have always followed their own rules. Sometimes they submit to the sound of the era (mainly Live And Let Die and The Spy Who Loved Me), but the content, the approach always was the same and was always successful.

    Also, didn't he say he just watched a few films to "get" the Bond sound? I wonder what films he saw when he comes to the conclusion that Bond score use themes "more often than not". In fact, I can only think of three scores (out of 23) that did not use a very prominent main theme - Goldeneye, License To Kill and Skyfall.

    "Coincidentally", none of these scores sound like the composer really understood James Bond. Kamen came closest. Newman did not.

    Well, he did say he watched Bond films in cinema. So that's the late 60s and 70s.

    I think what he meant with the themes is that you often have complete pieces of music in Bond scores. Melody is the main focus, rather than an underlying mood. So if you watch a film like "On Her Majesty's Secret Service" as opposed to the modern "Arnold" Bonds, you'll definitely hear music that's not directly reacting to what's happening on screen. It's not that the music does not support the action, but it is more independent. Well, you can blame him for that or not, but Thomas Newman tries to react to the action in a subtler way. You may like that or not or you can say that this approach is "wrong" for a Bond film. But it sounded very much like Thomas Newman is aware that he has to approach Bond in a different way.

    Is there such a great difference between Thomas Newman and David Arnold? They're both less traditional composers. They don't sound alike, but they both are very different to John Barry. How can you criticise Thomas Newman where you praise Arnold?

  9. My favourite little moment was the shot in the beginning were 007 jumps from the crane into the ripped open train carriage and fixes his cuff link.

    This is a typical 007 moment. But when Moore or Brosnan did it, they did it so obviously that they were winking at the audience (look at me being James Bond). Craig does it much such casual aditude that it just feels like second nature. That's why Craig is so reminiscent of Connery at times.

    I loved that moment, too. Craig really pulls it off.

    Re: the "dig". It was a throwaway dig at both Skyfall's intro and The World is Not Enough's CG heavy action. Rubbish CGI. You genuinely didn't notice it? Hmm, okay. I was personally VERY distracted during the bike chase by the director's insistence on painting over Craig's stunt double with Craig's face in a laughable effort to make me believe it was really him performing these dangerous high speed feats. It was uncanny valley says HELLO! There is nothing wrong at all with the odd shot here and there which shows fleeting glimpses of our movie star not really doing these stunts, it's absolutely fine; so trying to cover up the reality with ropey post-production work is unforgivable! And you really didn't notice the green screen backgrounds when the camera closed in on the real Craig as he pretended to be negotiating the oncoming obstacles in his path? Hence my KotCS reference earlier... Talk about taking me out of the moment. Honestly, at that early on in the movie I was genuinely concerned that I'd just blown £8.60 on a ticket, such was my reaction. This is what I meant by "ludicrous" - the sfx work, not the 'stunts' themselves; which would have been fantastic, if the movie was made thirty years ago.

    Well, some people really didn't notice that. I don't think that's weird, as people don't notice different things. I didn't notice anything really bad about the film. Well, as long as I am satisfied...

    And every time I try to remember anything odd about the Komodo Dragon... I just think of the Komodo Dragon. It worked for me. But that's just my natural naiveté, I guess......

  10. That couldn't be farther away from the truth.

    I picked up quite a few comments in the theatre foyer afterwards making similar remarks. My friend with whom I was seeing the film even called the chapel bit a "B-movie ending". While this is certainly a bit too harsh, I'm far from beinig alone.

    It was just very theatrical. B-movie ending would be the wrong description.

    The komodo dragon actually looked rather good.

    no it didnt.

    It lacked a lot of shaders and crap like that. it was noticeable CGI, many films have already had very good CGI animals. The komodo looked like CGI from ten years past or more.

    I didn't notice anything weird about it. I'm glad I didn't because it seems to have spoiled the experience for you.

    I'm still not sure why a couple of people felt the last act did not feel like Bond...

    Does anyone want to put forth an explanation? Was it the machine guns and mercenaries?

    Well, at least it wasn't a nuclear explosion or an exploding oil platform.

    There's been so many machine guns in previous Bond films... Increasing violence since the 1970s... Skyfall was almost moderate...

    I don't get that criticism either...

    One thing that was lame about this film, and what I will never be able to forget, is that Bond is drinking Heineken. Horrible choice!


    Ah, but they even handled that reasonably well; he's obviously not in a very good place during that scene, and he certainly doesn't look too happy to be drinking a Heineken. I agree with you in principle, though.

    You barely saw the beer! But anyway... We could complain about the use of product placement in Bond films in general. But Bond with Heineken is better than no Bond at all.

  11. The score works smashingly in the movie -- to its great credit -- but it's still too much like The Debt in the overpowering infiltration of Powellisms and other modern blockbuster vernacular, and the underdevelopment of the more idiosyncratically Newman-esque material.

    There actually is more Newman in the score than it seems.

    The more I listen to the score, the more I notice how distinctively Newman it is.

    I already could name a couple of his other scores that pieces from "Skyfall" remind me of. One sounds a bit like "Angels in America", some sound similar to "The Adjustment Bureau", another almost sounds like "Lemony Snicket". And the strings on this score are fabulous, even if you hate everything else.

    I think Newman's score for Skyfall works just fine in the movie. It's not Arnold for sure, but there's nothing offensive about the score. It suffers from temp-track syndrome, particularly Zimmer's Dark Knight score and Arnold's previous 007 outings in places, but it works in the film. When Newman's allowed to do his own thing, recalling The Debt and Adjustment Bureau, it's quite beautiful and hypnotic for the more technology-savvy Bond.

    "Jellyfish" and "She's Mine" do sound like Zimmer a lot. But it doesn't bother me that much. I can appreciate some Zimmer.

    But other pieces sound much more like him. And as much as some people hate this score, you can't deny the beauty of "Old Dog, New Tricks" (even if it did not end up in the film), "Close Shave", or "Skyfall".

    The score might have been better, as in coherence of style, but that's not his fault.

  12. Bernard Herrmann > All film composers.

    Even Williams would admit that.

    No, he wouldn't. He just stated that he has been inspired by Herrmann. In 50 years Herrmann will be forgotten.

    You mean like Thomas Newman?

    I don't think you could compare Herrmann to John Williams, because their styles are so different. Williams is good at what he does, so was Herrmann.

    Obviously, John Williams' scores are easily accessible, but that doesn't mean a score that is not is bad.

  13. He's also not that much into melody. He's always been more into rhythms and colors. He could have written a theme, but maybe he wasn't asked to do that.

    Not asked to do that? I don't think you would have to ask for example John Williams to write a theme for a new Star Wars movie. You would think it is a given.

    "Because he doesn't answer to people on film music message boards. He answered to Mendes and the Broccolis."

  14. While I understand Newman using that oriental sounding instrumentation in the parts of the score set in Turkey, China etc....

    He also uses it for London and Scotland.

    That's because he likes to include non-traditional elements in his scores, even if it may be irritating if you're not used to it. He thinks more in terms of color than what associations come along. It may probably be not that appropriate to use those instruments in an English setting in the film, but there he pulled back a bit. It's not that ethnic...

    Are you saying Newman had no idea it would be compared to the other Bond scores?

    Really Gyver.... You do talk rubbish sometimes.

    Big main themes simply are not in fashion right now. It's atmosphere and rhythm over thematic integrity. It's hardly Coolman's fault.

    He's also not that much into melody. He's always been more into rhythms and colors. He could have written a theme, but maybe he wasn't asked to do that.

  15. Favorite scene: the museum.

    Seriously, I think people here are confusing "depth and character development" with "darkness." This was a very fun movie.

    Now granted, if your idea of fun is campy evil villain petting a white cat and James Bond pinching sumo wrestler ass...then no...this a dreadfully serious film.

    That's exactly the idea I got from the trailers and video blogs. I didn't expect something like Live and Let Die. The white cat is a bit outdated anyway. Skyfall, as much as any other Bond, is a product of its time.

    No, but listening to the soundtrack made me wonder if they didn't use some Batman Begins/The Dark Knight cues as a temptrack.

    That's pretty likely, considering that the film already was an inspiration for Skyfall. Then the score was probably also inspired by that. The Nolan Batman films, especially The Dark Knight, also have a rather dark mood.

    I don't mind serious side of Bond. I have always liked OHMSS and Dalton's movies more contrary to Moore's action-adventure comedies. I like how Brosnan era introduced various modern issues into the series. Last but not least, I love how Bond's character has been reinvented for Daniel Craig in two previous pictures. But with Skyfall I really have mixed feelings.

    OHMSS is also a very fun movie - if not one of the funniest. It still has some British humour in it, opposed to the Moore 80s action era. Then the appeal was kind of lost - more average slapstick than cool humour.

    With this one he has become an interesting character - a seriously flawed one, more real-life down-to-earth than ever. It's okay, but it's not necessarily what I want from this franchise. If I want to watch a serious spy thriller, I turn on Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy. Bond movies of the past used to be sort of boy's fantasy. No matter if you were 6 or 66, you always wanted to be like Bond, live dangerous but exciting life, driving the best cars and dating the most beautiful girls.

    I really wonder who actually ever wanted to be Bond. I never needed an action hero or a princess to enjoy a film. Or a Rose and Jack. But well, I guess I'm in the minority there. Never understood superheroes either. What's the point? Maybe to have a good laugh, but...

    Anyway, you can't always get what you want. As long as it's not as clichéd as Avatar, I am fine with it.

  16. :sigh:

    I can tell, we're running out of steam here...

    I still have a couple of days until I can see the film. I'm curious how it will have turned out. Even David Arnold (who is not seen as an authority in any way on this forum, but I may mention it anyway) says that you shouldn't judge the score before you've seen how it works in the film. But well...

  17. I've tried to make myself like Thomas Newman more, I've listened to quite a few scores. And I DO like parts of Finding Nemo, Angels in America, Wall-E very much. But after a while, I just tire of his sound. I guess he's just not my cup of tea. And after hearing Skyfall, I've decide that I think its a so-so score...and I'm sad because being a big Arnold fan, I wish he'd have done it. The only thing I enjoyed hearing in it were the bond theme quotes.

    It's more of a case of a composer getting through to you. I listen to Newman exclusively because it's enough for me. I couldn't really get a picture of a composer's work if I listened to a dozen other composers at the same time. I would never try to make myself like a composer. I just try to be fair in judging other composers.

    I can't think of another composer like Thomas Newman. He's not part of a scene or something. I couldn't even say where I'd position him in the film music universe.

    And convention for me usually is a bad thing. Hans Zimmer sometimes sounds too similar, but that's probably because he works on so many projects. You can't always get what you want, I guess.

  18. Well, Newman hardly ever writes themes in the same way that, say, John Williams does. It's just a different approach. Personally, I prefer the more experimental stuff that Newman has done. I don't dislike his orchestral scores, but I can't listen to Meet Joe Black that often because it's less exciting than the American Beauty score. Like I prefer a film like White Oleander to a film like Titanic, if that makes sense.

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