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Chen G.

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Everything posted by Chen G.

  1. I bet most audience members wouldn't recognise Rey's theme. For the majority of the score, its much too gentle a piece of music to really leave an impression in a movie with loud noises. Star Wars main themes need to be bold and brassy (or scored for tuti strings, or a SATB choir). You'd also want two such themes to play one off of the other, otherwise the main theme would become an idee fixe. I gave The Force Awakens a rewatch and re-listen and Rey's theme is much too prevalent. Any other composer would be given grief for using a theme over 10 or 12 times, even in a longer composition, but Williams gets away with what seems like twenty statements or more.
  2. Yes, Attack of the Clones is another contender for worst Williams Star Wars score. But at least it has this incredible love theme that any member of the audience will not necessarily hum but certainly be made aware of and learn to recognise. There's nothing like that in The Force Awakens, except for statements of existing themes. Sure, choir can feel out of place in a Star Wars score. I don't need a SATB choir chanting (even though I do love a good choir), but I do need a grand theme that's easily identifyable in the film.
  3. Or maybe they are guys who are fans of film music as music in a film? Each of these scores need a pair of "big" memorable themes with strong, well-mixed statements. Once you have that, you can be as lyrical and as leitmotivically dense as you want, but you have to give the casual moviegoer something to rest his or her hat onto.
  4. But on the other hand, the juxtaposition would highlight the polish of production value, acting and camerawork of The Force Awakens.
  5. Absolutely, and its also a problem with Return of the Jedi which makes it all the more unfortunate because they are two adjecent episodes which both retread the same plot.
  6. But than, why would it need an "effective power demonstration" if its power had been demonstrated several times, including one time that happened in the midst of a large-scale battle with the rebels on a planet that hosted a large Imperial garrison? Good continuity requires a minimum of excuses. The casual audience needn't do a lot of guesswork for it all to make sense. Its also the forth (!) movie in this franchise where the Death Star features prominently, which makes it all the more worn-out a threat in a marathon viewing.
  7. Overall, I like The Force Awakens much more. Yes, it's almost unbelievably deriviative, but at least it's fun to watch. Rogue One is probably the only Star Wars film I don't see myself seeing for a third time. It has no character. It's empty. Its also every bit as egregious in terms of plot continuity as the prequels. So suddenly, the Death Star has already destroyed several other planets prior to Leia's, and suddenly it takes a while for the planet it hits to explode? Come on! The CG doesn't have nearly as much polish, and for someone that lives an hour's drive from Jerusalem, the design of Jeddah is the most on the nose design in the history of film.
  8. Which, according to ms. sweet-potato Kanata, is supposed to be the one that fell into oblivion in Empire Strikes Back! I assume some, but certainly not all. Johnson knows not to bite on more than he can chew, especially knowing that there's another one being made by another poor sucker (who, ironically, ended up being Abrams himself). Also, where we see a plot or continuity hole, Lucasfilm sees an opportunity for a bloody book!
  9. Yeah, but it seems like Johnson is insistent on fleshing more of them further than in The Force Awakens where so many of them (Hux, Snoke, Phasma) were just that - figures rather than characters. Even Poe and Leia don't have much to them in that film. I'm not necessarily saying that as a criticism - generally speaking, it knew where to keep its focus and where to draw a mark for following installments to draw out of. But in this film we are having Rey, Finn, Poe, Kylo, Snoke, Hux, Phasma, Luke, Leia and the Droids as actual characters, and top that with Rose, and the characters played by Laura Dern and Benicio Del Toro. The film might be a Maz Canata away from crumbling under the shared weight of its characters. For as good as it looks, there are a lot of hurdles that this film has to overcome! To just assume that it will be great is unfair.
  10. There are already way too many characters around this movie, as it is.
  11. The book is quite clear on the subject. Many real-life creatures that can't fly have wings.
  12. In that sense, just about every track on the OST is a concert arrangement in the sense that it is edited down to present a more "concert-like" listening experience. I do think that the longer, more leisurely period of recording, would allow Williams to produce as many suites as he desires.
  13. Revenge of the Sith. The Battle of the Heroes is edited-down from material used in the underscore, not a dedicated Suite.
  14. Yeah, what he said certainly makes sense for the movie from a structural point of view. He's essentially describing an action opening sequence not unlike that of the original Star Wars, which is a good way to go about constructing this episode. Although, with Abrams helming the last installment, one must wonder how all of this will play out. Abrams is also fond of the idea of an opening action scene, but outside of James Bond movies, its unusual in film trilogies to have a grand action opening to all three pictures. Look at the Middle Earth films, the previous Star Wars trilogies, etcetra. There's always an odd one out, and there's a reason for it.
  15. Been reading the reviews that are coming out the preview footage. Structurally, it makes a lot of sense - particularly given the length of the picture - to do a James-Bond action opening. Its a staple of many of the Star Wars episodes, starting with the original where it ensues no later than the very first shot. It sounds like a fully fleshed out sequence with a variety of different "beats", which is important to give the audience some sense of satisfaction early on the film. Sounds promising!
  16. Its Luke's theme. Its just inverted. See the aforementioned interview at 01:03:20 going forward.
  17. That's generally very true of assesing large-scale leitmotivic works, yes. Over so many hours of music, some generic sequences of notes are bound to recur even without the composer trying to create a recurring motif. But in this particular case, I don't think Adams is too off of the mark. Its true that Williams doesn't compose thematic material in sets and subsets of related motives, in the way that Wagner or Shore do, but he does nevertheless forge occasional connections between many of his themes. This is especially true for the prequels, where Williams had an inkling as to what was going to happen in a way he never had on any of his projects, so he could embed the Imperial March in Anakin's theme, and do the same with Luke and Leia's themes in Across the Stars.
  18. Not quite. Doug Adams has explained that its kind of a meshing together of the main titles theme, which belongs to Luke, and Leia's theme: It starts with an interval between the intervals of those two themes, and continues from there with connections to both themes throughout. It certainly seems to me like its closer to Luke's theme than it is to Leia, but I wouldn't say its an outright variation on either - its just connected to them. There's also that ominous sounding end-cap in the unabridged theme (e.g. the concert presentation) that sounds to me like it could also be connected to the Imperial March. Its also one of the gestures in Williams body of work which is said to quote Dies Irae, although it might not be entirely delieberate here.
  19. I don't see it happening. Its like the rumors that Mel Gibson would direct Suicide Squad 2.
  20. I never saw it on HFR but I did see it in 3D, which I seem to recall was very immersive. Jackson knows his 3D, as do James Cameron and Martin Scorcese. I hear they improved on the HFR look in the later two films, too. To each his own: it's not like the moviegoing experience hinged on 3D or on HFR, so I don't mind the criticism. Both are important avenues to explore in the development of film-form going forward.
  21. Both this and The Force Awakens had parts of it shot on 70mm, I'm sure. I don't necessarily mind digital, though. It's already overtaking the resolution of 35mm film, and the clarity is unparalleled.
  22. Who cares about scientific accuracy in film? A film isn't grounded by virtue of it being scientifically realistic, but by virtue of the people in it behaving like living, breathing human beings.
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