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Chen G.

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Everything posted by Chen G.

  1. I do have associations with the Force, too. Also, in the early part of the piece, I recall the Young Anakin.
  2. Well, that's the whole point of this kind of leitmotif writing, isn't it? No just the themes themselves, but the various, shared musical building blocks that connect them. Its inevitable that, with so much musical water under the Star Wars bridge, we hear a lot of things in this theme.
  3. Yeah, it just has an ostinato as a little bridging section.
  4. Since we've extended into choral sounds, I'd add the "exotic" crooning woman vocals.
  5. It’s most out-of-place in those pieces where the musical texture is quite dark and serious, and all of a sudden that damn Xylophone comes in.
  6. Thinking of it within the context of Williams' orchestration, sometimes the use of glockenspiel and xylophone can sometimes be annoyingly bright within very dark pieces: I'm thinking for instance of some of the Mustafar pieces from Revenge of the Sith. You'll get this oppresively dark music, interspersed with these odd twinkles. Its part of the way Williams evokes a "mechanical" sound of grinding gears, but in these cases...
  7. Well, in 1976, it was... In the souvenir program he's referred to as "Lord Darth Vader", i.e. "Darth" was not a byword for "Lord."
  8. I just got the impression that in 1976, Darth was his first name...
  9. I think the movie would have been more interesting if he wasn't wrong.
  10. Well, that quote of Luke's is a kind of retcon of the prequel trilogy that frames the Jedi as flawed: I don't think Lucas was writing the prequel trilogy thinking the Jedi are particularly flawed. I think he gave Yoda and Windu and Obi Wan lines which he thought were really cool zen kind of things, but which to a western, 21st century audience came-off alienating. Rian Johnson tried to recontextualize the whole thing which, to be fair, is something this series had always been doing. We can argue how succesful it is or isn't, but I don't think it sheds any more light on Luke's conduct. I think feeling responsible for the deaths of who-knows how many teenage students who are under your care is enough to send anyone into seclusion.
  11. Many people feel that the Ring is not as great a work as some of Wagner's other works: sometimes people will cite Parsifal, but Tristan is the usual suspect. Debussi, for instance, had a dislike for the Ring, but admired Tristan and Parsifal. I think Tristan is indeed the highest artistic achievement, but more and more I find myself drawn to the humanity of Die Walküre. The love of Tristan and Isolde is beyond us in its cosmic eroticism, whereas the love of Siegmund and Sieglinde is not: its glorious in its prosaicness. I don't think that in any of the music-dramas do audiences get as involved as they do with Siegmund and Sieglinde. This means that, on a good evening, when Sieglinde has her nightmare or when Siegmund falls, its utterly shattering.
  12. Boorman claims he went to the Centenary Ring just before Excalibur, which is where he got the idea of using all that music. I never knew what to make of this claim: how the hell could he have gotten tickets in time?
  13. I hate talking about movies in terms of so-called "narrative efficiency." Movies are not dragster cars: they're under no obligation to get through their plot as quickly as possible; which is, sadly, exactly what The Rise of Skywalker does. I've never seen a movie paced quite like that: it goes by in a blur, and its completely joyless (and stakeless) for it. When a movie treats itself as an inconvenience to its audience, to the degree that it feels compelled to make the end-credits arrive as soon as possible, how can it be anything but mirthless? That alone would be sufficient reason to write the movie off: you just can't settle into any situation or feeling and enjoy it. But I also take issue with what the movie feels like it "needs to do": The nonesensical plotting; the soap-opera-parody level of dramaturgy, hinged so completely on who's-related-to-who-and-how-much; the utter moral bankruptcy of redeeming the murderous neurotic Kylo Ren for giving CPR to a girl once... Not that Attack of the Clones is necessarily better with its tedium, hokey acting and that awful "to be angry is to be human", but still!
  14. Ultimately, if you start psychoanalysing Luke's actions to the 'nth degree it doesn't hold water anymore, but in the heat of the moment, I thought it was plenty effective. Holko will wring my neck, but in the Todesverkundingungscena does it really make sense for Siegmund to contemplate killing Sieglinde in her sleep? If you pause the piece and start psychoanalysing it to death, probably not. But in the moment, its a stupendous dramatic turn of events. Not to put too many superlatives on The Last Jedi's treatment of this storyline: even here, I think there was a lot more there to mine. In particular, I think it would have been much more powerful for the movie to end with "yes, it is time for the Jedi to end." But, still, that part of the movie works more than not.
  15. It was also used in some old Flash Gordon serials. Weird. A great piece, of course. Not as great as Tristan or Die Walkure, but great nonetheless. One needs to be in a Parsifal mood: its very slow and pensive.
  16. I think that's a huge conceptual issue with the movie. If the entire film was about repeated assasination attempts against Padme, it would make both Anakin protecting her and Obi-Wan's investigation have a lot more urgency. But alas...
  17. I think that storyline gets more credit than it deserves, honestly. I mean, its great that you enjoy it, but for me, the fact that no more attempts are made on Padme's life kinda puts the fire out from underneath Obi Wan's investigation. Its like "Oh, chill out, Obi Wan, clearly whomever it is who tried to kill Padme had given up!" Sure, the detective story kinda morphs into "the hell is this Clone army?!" but then that "mystery" gets...shoved under the carpet, never to be resolved. Also, the answer of who's behind Padme's assasination attempt is disappointing: "Ah, right, the bad guys from the previous film! And this new character - not introduced until this point - who we could guess was 'it' unless for the extremly clumsy device of letting Windu promise us he isn't."
  18. Abrams definitely set-up Luke being reluctant to rejoin the conflict. Johnson just took it further with cutting himself off from The Force and with the backstory of him having contemplated killing Kylo.
  19. Sadly, those who don't want to be convinced, won't be convinced...
  20. I think its easy to make too much of those moments, and ignore the ways in which they are filmed and how they sit in the narrative. The charred remains of Luke's family isn't something the camera lingers on too much and too close-up, and its not something that continues to burden Luke: the movie doesn't dwell on it, which is why the film almost got rated G regardless. Similarly, Snoke's actual bisection happens out-of-focus. We later do get a closeup of his corpse, though. It earned the film a PG-13, but not with flying colours, so to speak. The edgiest moment in the films is probably still Anakin being set alight, because the camera dwells on it and on its aftermath.
  21. I keep on going back and forth between the two. Its basically a debate between over the top whackiness (The Rise of Skywalker) and tedium (Attack of the Clones). I think whackiness wins. Both films are about the same degree of decadent, too.
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