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Bayesian

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Bayesian last won the day on September 12 2020

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  1. I normally can't stand anything by Balfe, but this... isn't half bad.
  2. You know, if word of this gets around enough, they’re gonna ask people to stop posting any pics at all from inside the scoring stage 😉 (mind you, with JW retiring, I suppose it’s all moot.)
  3. Does anyone know who wrote the melody for the Touchstone Television logo?
  4. I wonder if any of the classical piano pieces that diagetically appear in the film will be on the Milan soundtrack. If yes, I hope they’ll be performed originally—either by Michelle Williams, if she’s a competent pianist, or (ideally) by JW himself. Almost anything her character would perform in the film would likely be in the public domain, so that’d surely make things easier on the licensing end of things.
  5. Who’s gonna be on his laptop at 10 am Friday buying tickets for himself and the wife? This guy! Danny Elfman in November and now JW in February—not bad at all for California’s second major orchestra! Very exciting!
  6. I saw it with a couple friends when it opened, and I liked it a lot. Aerial photography was excellent and the story is told very straightforwardly. Not a lot of complexity to the characters, but this isn't that kind of movie. (Also included were several very obvious callbacks to the first Top Gun.) Some of the visuals were pretty engrossing, I thought (e.g., the establishing shot of the Mach-10 test jet racing across the Southwest U.S.). The scene with Maverick in the diner in the middle of nowhere was pretty great, I'll admit. Was it a movie that I'd ever imagine would reach the rarefied heights of the all-time box office earners? No way. Not because it's in any way a poor film (it's not), but because it doesn't deliver what most blockbusters have been offering for years. Specifically, there's no worldbuilding, no larger-than-life characters, no distracting CGI, no silly-looking costumes, no overwrought carnage or destruction of property, no obvious pandering to special interests or causes... instead, it's refreshingly normal. It's an adventure film (of sorts) that you could imagine actually occurring in today's world, with today's tech. It's the kind of sequel we might have gotten ten years after Top Gun instead of 36 years later. And maybe that 90's-era feel is why people have been craving it, relishing it. Just my thoughts.
  7. I feel like it’d have to be an issue from a few months later, as the photo was taken in January ‘01 but it would take several weeks to fit it into the editorial content of an issue and then get it printed. No need to prioritize that for me or anything! It’s enjoyment enough to see a fellow JW connoisseur and read about how this great man accompanied your life for 3 decades now and counting. @lairdo, I loved your story too! Pretty fun how your collection habit started literally in the crucible of Hollywood moviemaking—not many folks are likely ever to be able to say that!
  8. Phenomenal collection, @Sandor! I couldn't help notice that lovely Annie Leibovitz photo of JW sitting on a stool in a scoring stage -- what issue of Vanity Fair was that, if you don't mind my asking? I'd like to try to track that down.
  9. Have there been any tweets or other evidence that the recording of this score has wrapped up -- or, for that matter, that the film is in the can? If we reckon on 7 months of post, the film would have been finished last month.
  10. Tim, if you’re still working on this piece (and I hope you are), I came across a reference in the webcomic xkcd by Randall Munroe: https://xkcd.com/324/ Another (albeit oblique) candidate comes from the Fox animated show Duncanville. In season 2, episode 11, Annie introduces her newfound passion as a bird lady to her family à la John Hammond and the music at that moment is meant to evoke the majesty of the JP theme. (The show is available on hulu.)
  11. I wish I was as enthusiastic about this season as many of you are, but I’m finding it considerably weaker than last season. Apologies in advance to the fans, who probably won’t care for the rest of this post. First, I’m annoyed they chose not to show us any of the host-human war, especially since they left the war as the S3 cliffhanger. Maybe they couldn’t integrate it into an eight-episode storyline, but they should have figured out how give us a better payoff—more hints that the world somehow changed after the war ended. Instead, everything looks and feels almost exactly the same. Skyscrapers in L.A. were exploding in the S3 finale, if I recall, but suddenly we’re seven years ahead and NYC (basically the only civilization we’re ever really shown) looks completely fine. No evidence that something world-changing occurred a few years earlier. No exposition about socio-political fallout or lessons learned or adaptations required of a world that intentionally chose to lurch backwards technologically. Just a line with Caleb about robots being turned into scrap metal. How deeply unsatisfying. Second, flies? To physically deliver a parasite that makes people sufficiently suggestible to low frequency sound waves that they’ll kill themselves? Fucking Sharknado made more sense than this hooey. Third, Charlotte and William eventually prevail and take over humanity (presumably by getting flies to crawl into 8 billion people’s eye sockets) and all we see Charlotte do is hang out in NYC? Did Christina write 8 billion NPC routines in all the time she wasn’t skipping work and painting and being forced to go out on boring dates? Are there no rogue host-android-whatevers outside NYC to help expand the scene-setting beyond Olympiad’s building and that same park-plaza space we see over and over? Fourth, I can suspend my disbelief only so long. A city’s worth of commandeered humans can’t manage to capture or chase down a couple outliers before they saunter back onto their boat? Please. The faceless white host things can get suspicious when a human blinks behind its back but somehow can’t tell an un-parasited human from a parasited one when directly scanning one an inch from its face? Uh-huh. Bernard sees the sole way humanity wins out over hosts so specifically that a meal choice at a diner makes a difference. Give me a break with this Dr.-Strange-scans-millions-of-scenarios-and-sees-only-where-the-avengers-win-and-of-course-that’s-the-one-that’ll-take-place kind of bullshit. It’s weird reading so many people rave about this season. What are they seeing that I can’t? To wit—the scene where Charlotte “plays” with her human puppets in a NYC street: people talk about how chilling and sublime that scene is. Um, no, it’s not. I mean, it could have been, but the writing is so poor that we get no sense of the potential depravity of the situation (at least as far as the humans are concerned). The human puppets are blankly compelled to dance for a bit, slowly at first, then faster. A few fall down without injury. So what? Three of them are forced to make a chair, which ought to be seen as demeaning but instead looks like nothing because the humans don’t react at all to it. The pianist’s fingers are bloodied, perhaps from being forced to play endlessly, but we don’t see his face to know if he’s actually feeling any pain. At the end, everyone resumes their daily lives like nothing happened. The problem is that this scene is such a wasted opportunity to show us the insidious threat that charlotte represents. What if she forced those same people to dance so vigorously that they started breaking ankles or having cardiac arrests or dislocating shoulders? Or compelled the ice carving guy to carve so fast he loses control and slices off a finger? Not to be gratuitously violent, but if Charlotte is the product of human intellect and harbors human-style revenge impulses, where is her willingness to push the boundary with her subjects, just to see what happens? As viewers, we’d gain a hatred for Charlotte that would be truly earned. And it’d be a nice parallel to the reverse situation that existed in Delos’ Westworld in S1. This show is finally buckling under its own high-concept weight. There’s too little substance behind the facade. Much like TED talks or the Economist magazine or Christopher Nolan’s movies, Westworld turns out to be not much more than an upper-middlebrow-feinting premise—all sizzle and precious little steak. (Going by my examples, it sure seems the Brits are quite good at getting the world to fall for this kind of thing. The Nolan matriarch must be so proud of her boys!)
  12. Oh Greenberg. I sure hope you made it a point in your course to point out all the instances when the classical greats lifted, quoted, or mimicked their peers and forbears and didn’t just pick on JW because he’s an easy target. It’s not just Greenberg though. I googled just now for composers lifting from other composers and basically every hit came back JW. Maybe that’s just my phone knowing I was on JWFan a moment before and trying to feed me supposedly relevant links, but if not, what a ridiculous burden JW is forced to endure among the uninformed masses. The so-called tall poppy syndrome—what an invidious and corrosive thing for successful people to have to deal with. People can be so petty. It’s sickening. I’m just glad the cognoscenti are above it and rightly shower JW with the volume of love no other film composer is likely to ever receive again. I have nothing more to say about the glee with which so many people attempt to slander JW (for now at least), except to offer this link to a Quora post where Curtis Lindsay offers an answer that sets the record straight in an evenhanded way. @bollemanneke, read it and restore your faith in JW. https://www.quora.com/Why-does-a-talented-composer-like-John-Williams-seem-to-rip-off-pieces-from-classical-music
  13. Interesting list; thank you for researching this, Bespin! Any chance you'd be willing to update each entry in this list with the number of copies sold? I don't know how that number is calculated (is it the number sold in the calendar year the album was released? the number sold to date?), but I'm definitely curious.
  14. The wife and I have been working our way through ABC's crime drama Big Sky, which was created by David E Kelley. It's not bad, but not really great either. The villains are generally far more interesting than the good guys (two headstrong female private eyes and a bunch of male cop/PI types who mostly just get pushed around by them), but the show's characters don't quite have the quirkiness you'd expect from a Kelley series. A lot happens in this show--so much so that you quickly start to roll your eyes at the plausibility of all the damn coincidences that crop up for these characters. (A couple of the twists are neat, though.) We're almost halfway through season 2 and we both have thrown up our hands at all the "they-look-dead-but-aren't-really" moments. Maybe this show would work better if they didn't need to fill up a dozen and a half episodes each season; ten episodes would work great for this premise. Having said that, John Carroll Lynch is in this and he's great. So is Janina Gavankar as Ren. I'll also note that this show is big on its socially progressive bona fides. The gay teenage couple strikes me as token pandering, but Jesse James Keitel's trans character is well written and given some decent development, which is more than I can say for the two female leads.
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