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The end of this year is almost upon us. There are still some things to be released this year, but, I think, we can slowly start to wrap things up.

I am mostly referring to NEW scores written for 2010 films. That's because the status status of the re-released older stuff is already established and their glourious re-releases would just overshadow the new ones. Like it usually do. And this is not what's it's all about.

So what would you say about this year's releases? Any surprises? Disappointments?

I don't want to create lists, because this is not a contest. I'm just looking for opinions.

Karol

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There's 2010 scores that haven't even finished being written yet, yet alone scores that haven't come out on CD yet, for films that haven't been released to cinemas yet

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There's 2010 scores that haven't even finished being written yet, yet alone scores that haven't come out on CD yet, for films that haven't been released to cinemas yet

That's why there is "start to wrap up" not "wrap up". It's more of a "2010 film music" thread in general.

Karol

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Well for me HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON really was the surprise of the year! I thought it was okay the first time I heard it, but after seeing the movie, and listening to it again... it grew on me in a HUGE way and there was a period where I could not stop listening to it. :lol:

Personal disappointment had to be HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS. Sure, it isn't bad, imo, and I liked it better after listening to it more, but it was still a disappointment from what I expected (and from that interview with Desplat that threw us all off).

However, Jason is right. Year is not over yet. I am still very much looking forward to NARNIA: VOYAGE OF THE DAWN TREADER!

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WAYYYY too early for a thread like this

Which is why I'm holding off starting the 2nd annual Golden Mug awards until January. But it's coming, oh yes...

What about the 3rd Annual JWFan awards? Does that have a surviving chance? :lol:

Some of my favorites off the top of my head:

How To Train Your Dragon

The Last Airbender

Knight And Day

Welcome To The Rileys

Black Swan

Inception

Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows

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My favourite scores:

The Wolfman by Danny Elfman

The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus by Jeff Danna and Mychael Danna

The Ghost Writer by Alexandre Desplat

Creation by Christopher Young

Daybreakers by Christopher Gordon

How To Train Your Dragon by John Powell

Disappointments:

The Twilight Saga: Eclipse by Howard Shore. Not terrible, but not exciting either.

Iron Man 2 by John Debney. It could have been fun, but it tries too hard to be too many things at once. And it fails miserably.

Nanny McPhee and The Big Bang by James Newton Howard. Boooooring.

The Last Airbender by James Newton Howard

Salt by James Newton Howard

Predators by John Debney

Honorable mentions:

Alice In Wonderland by Danny Elfman. While a solid score and one of the best cues of the year (Alice's Theme) it's lacking something.

Edge of Darkness by Howard Shore

Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows by Alexandre Desplat. I enjoy it, but it's still not a winning league.

Legend of the Guardians by David Hirschfelder. Not quite up there, but this is the closest you can get to the traditional big orchestral scoring of yesterday. Shades of JW are there.

Let Me In by Michael Giacchino

Arnold's Narnia score will probably end up in the third category. Fantasy films are not my cup of tea anymore.

Karol

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My favourite scores:

The Wolfman by Danny Elfman

The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus by Jeff Danna and Mychael Danna

The Ghost Writer by Alexandre Desplat

Creation by Christopher Young

Daybreakers by Christopher Gordon

How To Train Your Dragon by John Powell

Disappointments:

The Twilight Saga: Eclipse by Howard Shore. Not terrible, but not exciting either.

Iron Man 2 by John Debney. It could have been fun, but it tries too hard to be too many things at once. And it fails miserably.

Nanny McPhee and The Big Bang by James Newton Howard. Boooooring.

The Last Airbender by James Newton Howard

Salt by James Newton Howard

Predators by John Debney

Honorable mentions:

Alice In Wonderland by Danny Elfman. While a solid score and one of the best cues of the year (Alice's Theme) it's lacking something.

Edge of Darkness by Howard Shore

Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows by Alexandre Desplat. I enjoy it, but it's still not a winning league.

Legend of the Guardians by David Hirschfelder. Not quite up there, but this is the closest you can get to the traditional big orchestral scoring of yesterday. Shades of JW are there.

Let Me In by Michael Giacchino

Karol

You just made me realize how many good ones I overlooked.

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My favourite scores:

The Wolfman by Danny Elfman

The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus by Jeff Danna and Mychael Danna

The Ghost Writer by Alexandre Desplat

Creation by Christopher Young

Daybreakers by Christopher Gordon

How To Train Your Dragon by John Powell

Disappointments:

The Twilight Saga: Eclipse by Howard Shore. Not terrible, but not exciting either.

Iron Man 2 by John Debney. It could have been fun, but it tries too hard to be too many things at once. And it fails miserably.

Nanny McPhee and The Big Bang by James Newton Howard. Boooooring.

The Last Airbender by James Newton Howard

Salt by James Newton Howard

Predators by John Debney

Honorable mentions:

Alice In Wonderland by Danny Elfman. While a solid score and one of the best cues of the year (Alice's Theme) it's lacking something.

Edge of Darkness by Howard Shore

Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows by Alexandre Desplat. I enjoy it, but it's still not a winning league.

Legend of the Guardians by David Hirschfelder. Not quite up there, but this is the closest you can get to the traditional big orchestral scoring of yesterday. Shades of JW are there.

Let Me In by Michael Giacchino

Arnold's Narnia score will probably end up in the third category. Fantasy films are not my cup of tea anymore.

Karol

You were disappointed by Last Airbender?? :thumbup:

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I really loved James Horner's Karate Kid.

I didn't like Let Me in by the very up and down Giacchino, consistency is not his flair, nor did I care for Powell's Dragons, it was a great film and would have been better with at least a decent score which the one it has isn't.

Creation by Christopher Young is good, I had to give it a listen cause I like Drag Me to Hell so much.

I wanted to like Deathly Hallows more than I do, but I'm ok with it.

I really really wanted to like Elfman's Wolfman, but I was not impressed. It's a shame. Course the film and all it's components were mostly a disaster.

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I like a lot Dragon, Knight and Day, The Ghost Writer, The Wolfman (I like Pope's version better, but both are great) and The Karate Kid.

I was very very very dissapointed with Inception. After all the fuss it had from the fans and Zimmer himself, I expected something more, and I guess even Zimmer prefers his earlier ideas (the love story score) than the ones that ended up on film.

And I'm not too sure what to think about DH1... I like it, but it lacks something. Maybe watching the film will help me appreciate the score more... Yeah, I haven't seen it yet. Never cared too much for the series. I read until the fifth book and saw until the third film (I saw the fourth one but I was never able to finish it). I don't know exactly why people like it so much... Oh well, to itch his own...

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David Arnold will need to use about 5% of his capacity to make his Narnia the BEST score of 2010.

I still need to fully hear Let Me In, but Arnold's definitely got a chance to be the top pick for me.

Counting everything, the best new music I've heard this year were the final episodes of Lost and Final Fantasy XIII.

WAYYYY too early for a thread like this

Which is why I'm holding off starting the 2nd annual Golden Mug awards until January. But it's coming, oh yes...

What about the 3rd Annual JWFan awards? Does that have a surviving chance? :thumbup:

Nah. :joy:

Maybe we can coordinate something.

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This year nothing sticked out prominently to my ears, but I must admit that I didn't listen to a lot of things--I'm losing interest in contemporary film scoring, as I find more difficult to be "in tune" with a lot of stuff (even with some of the most fan favourites here, like John Powell or James Newton Howard).

I think Giacchino's Lost - Season Six is probably the best piece of film scoring I've heard this year (even though it's technically television scoring, but whatever). The guy knows his stuff and he can write heartfelt music.

Christopher Gordon's Mao's Last Dancer and Daybreakers were two brilliant scores written by a real composer who has real chops at writing symphonic film music with broad strokes--a dying breed of film composers, sadly.

The Ghost Writer is Alexandre Desplat's best 2010 score--Deathly Hallows is very good, but the score for Polanski's film is much more interesting.

Elfman was a huge letdown for me this year--both Wolfman and Alice in Wonderland are far from being his greatest achievements--there are some very good things in both of them, but they lack the brilliant creative spark I expect from him. The last time I noticed it was in Serenada Schizophrana and Milk.

I still have to listen to Goldenthal's The Tempest--he's another true composer who can write something really good and far from cliché, so I hope he will deliver.

For all the rest, well, 2010 was kind of creative desert. That's not to say that there isn't some good or even great music written for films, but my view is that Hollywood nowadays is compressing composers' creativity into some very strict patterns.

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nor did I care for Powell's Dragons, it was a great film and would have been better with at least a decent score which the one it has isn't.

Why didn't you like it? It surprises me that people don't like this score as much as it surprises most that I don't like Star Wars.

"not my sound" is an acceptable answer. "It sucks" is not.

Some of my favourites:

HTTYD - An all out fantasy score with every theme you could want.

Legend of the Guardians - I was pleasantly surprised by this. The command of the orchestra here is superb.

Last Airbender - I think the orchestration in places is a bit dodgy and even amateurish, but it never bores me, and has a few of my most played cues. For those reasons alone it's a highlight of the year.

Elfman's efforts (Terminator, Alice, Wolfman) were good but didn't hit the ball out of the park. No one else has really shone this year for me.

I've found my LE purchases more interesting this year.

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Elfman's efforts (Terminator, Alice, Wolfman) were good but didn't hit the ball out of the park. No one else has really shone this year for me.

Terminator Salvation was from 2009

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The re-releases of this year threw a humongous shadow on 2010's newly borns.

Purely by the number of scores that all had good to even great quality, I would think Elfman did best by far.

I never understood why people drool all over "How To Train Your Dragon", so no.

Iron Man 2 must be one of the major dissapointments of 2010.

And I have to agree somewhat that David Arnold just might squeeze the best of 2010 in at the last minute.

My personal favourites of 2010 are probably his Dawn Treader and Deathly Hallows (even though it fails as a Harry Potter score).

A close third rank goes to Alice In Wonderland.

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I like Deathly Hallows more and more. Actually quite enjoyable, and I think it grows on you after repeated listen. It's probably one of the most thematic scores of the year, and even though these themes might not be terribly memorable, and I dearly miss some of the old Williams themes (nobody ever mentions already existing themes for Dobby, several for Voldemort etc.) which might actually have fit in this movie (Hedwig's theme really doesn't so much, I think), I expect it to be my second choice of the year (after Dawn Treader). Prince of Persia is my no. 3; strange that it is completely overlooked by most. Yes, it's somewhat generic, and can't hide its ties to Remote Control, but it still is a rousing, thematically rich adventure/fantasy score. Other good entries were Alice in Wonderland, The Last Airbender (even though I agree with whoever said that it's enough to listen to the suite and that it's not one of JNH's best scores), and Percy Jackson and the Olympians.

Overall, not a bad year for me. However, there were some truly ghastly scores too, and I'm a little concerned that the soundtrack style I favor might more and more disappear. Hope it doesn't...

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Elfman's efforts (Terminator, Alice, Wolfman) were good but didn't hit the ball out of the park. No one else has really shone this year for me.

Why would you want your soccer ball hit out of the park? Doesn't that waste time?

I use Americanizations all the time these days.

And the soccer ball can be anywhere for all I care. I find football boring if it's not the world cup.

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I'm going to agree that all in all the wide-release movies this year were pretty disappointing, particularly in the music department.

Edge of Darkness - still can't get over John Corigliano's replacement, even for someone as great as Shore.

Alice in Wonderland - liked the tracks that prominently featured the main theme but it, like the movie it accompanied, was a turgid mess

Clash of the Titans - as rarely an epic mythology-based film comes out I was livid at how generic and unlistenable the score to this one was

Robin Hood - another film I excepted great things from, especially given the director, sadly another boring wash of musical wallpaper

Prince of Persia - etc

The Twilight Saga: Eclipse - etc

The Sorcerer's Apprentice - etc

Be it a wasted opportunity or a composer I respect not quite delivering, there just wasn't a lot this year that excited me.

The only scores I've enjoyed this year are Last Airbender, HTTYD, Inception, Kick-Ass, and Dinner for Schmucks. And for me the only knock-out was HTTYD. Clearly I need to hunt down this Ghosterwriter score though.

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