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The Force Awakens SCORE Discussion (Film Spoilers Allowed)


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Well, Thor did like the film, and to be fair TF has been expressing some pessimism about it in his posts over the last few months. Even though I am sure he was ultimately hoping to enjoy it, I'll take his opinion on it with a grain of salt if he doesn't mind ;) but I am really encouraged by his thoughts on the score.

I reckon this is the key to interpreting reviews here. Do your sensibilities align more with Thor, who to me seems determined to give everything a neutral, fair shake and consequently enjoys a lot of stuff (and I share this sentiment), or TownerFan, who represents more those who long for a bygone era and are let down by most things because of it? I'm not trying to be harsh with that, it's just how I observe things. There are many here on both sides. What I'm saying is, it's obvious to me who will like this film and score, and who won't. Search your feelings, and you will know what's in store for you.

True. In fact, I can't think of any poster here who's general stance lines up with mine. But the descriptions of tracked music and a "flightier" feel for the action cues sound relatively unappealing on their own merit, regardless of who's posting them.

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Going to bed now, but I tried to answer some of these questions without spoiling anything. Tomorrow, many of you are going to see it. It will be interesting to see if some of my observations here will

I just saw the film and here is my lengthy, deep analysis: The music was fucking AMAZING!!!

Just saw the film. I will focus on the score, and refrain from addressing much about the film per se, except that it is easily the most well-written, well-executed Star Wars film since ESB. The new ch

Would the verbatim quotes make the score ineligible for the Oscars? Or the use of existing themes? I'm not sure about the rules anymore.

It wouldn't if the new work is not "diluted by the old themes".

He was nominated for sequels before... namely Harry Potter 3, Indy 2 and 3, Star Wars 5 and 6, all of which re-state themes from the first score.

Shore won for LOTR 3 which stated themes from the previous 3 films.

Nino Rota won for Godfather 2 which stated themes from the previous score.

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Let me put it this way: the score is a very nice addition to the overall SW musical lexicon and it surely will grow on me when I'll listen to its own on the album. Heard within the film it maybe lacks some extra "punch", even though JW accompanies the narrative with his usual flair and prowess like only him can do.

I'm pretty sure a lot of people here will compare it to Crystal Skull.

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But so just to confirm because this ABC spot thing is still a little confusing to me, what you are saying is the melody is not actually Rey's theme in its "original" form but a variation of it? So we still have yet to hear the theme?

Where was that information about Rey's theme you mention? Was this something said under one of the spoiler tags?

The theme heard in the ABC spot is really the final scene of the movie. It's not Rey's theme, but imho a sort of variation of it. Rey's theme is a longer, more developed melody typical of late JW scores. It's not instantly memorable imho (I cannot remember it right now), but it's definitely lovely. It's probably the new theme that gets more developed throughout the film.

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Read your comments in the spoiler tags earlier, TownerFan, and seems we have a LOT of overlapping opinions on and observations of the score.

We disagree quite a bit on the film, though, which I seemed to like a lot more than you.

Sure, the film is getting mostly positive reviews. During my screening yesterday I saw more than one perplexed face, but overall it's surely a well-done action/adventure film. My own biggest problem with the film is the writing and some narrative choices, but I don't have time now to go deep into it.

Regarding the music I'm sure we'll have plenty of time to analyze every nook and cranny of it. There is surely a lot to grasp into.

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A very, very quick writedown of my experience of the score (on the way home):

The Resistance fugue is brilliant (almost sounds like an unused, more mature Hook cue). There's a lot of classic OT brass writing in here - chromatic trumpet whirls a la ESB/ROTJ, lots of 'blasts', etc. Very different from what we heard in the Prequel trilogy, except perhaps the xylophone/woodwind writing in some places! Of course, there are trademark Williams moments (e.g. parallel major chords during the battles, the Hook-esque fugue I mentioned, and most notably, by far (!), ROTS-esque string writing (along the lines of the several Requiem-ish cues that score has to offer) and a couple of quartal moments). What I couldn't appreciate, though, is the cliché feel of much of the First Order underscore (think Giacchino's low brass moments) and the overly frequent use of the Rebel Fanfare. Yes, it's great and nostalgic, but it doesn't seem to fit with the rest of the action material. Of note is that the film is pretty much scored wall-to-wall (rendering one spine-tingling moment of silence near the end of the film very effective). That's it!

This is very intimidating, as I'm just 17 years old and attempting to write something intelligent concerning the score!

Also,

Rey has a brilliant motif! Sounds like some of AOTC's playful moments, but far more mature! Also, lots of AOTC-esque woodwind moments for BB-8 (think the end of Shmi's Funeral).

Oh , and there's a gorgeous woodwind chord for BB-8 near the beginning of the film, along the lines of the end of ROTS's 'Dialogue With Mace'.

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That's an amazing rundown of the score Alexander! I'm really excited again now! It sounds like a hybrid of both trilogies, so he's forging ahead in a new direction.

Everyone seems to be raving about Rey's Theme so I'm relieved to know how effective it is in the film. Great stuff!

And totally unsurprised to read Abrams had the film scored almost wall to wall. I'd do the same in his position as an unabashed Williams fanboy!

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I was a bit dissapointed, though.

None of the awesome polytonal moments ROTS had (think 'Get 'Em R-2'). There is a little bit which I think is semi-quartal, semi-tertian though - two brass chords for a scene involving the Falcon.

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Also,

One of the videos showing Williams conducting had a marcato trombone rendition of Kylo Ren's theme (E-D#-G-F#) which did not appear in the film! Aside from that, I believe 'Sherzo For X-Wings' has an insert in the film! The bold rendition of Luke's theme we heard in the clip was interrupted rather oddly, followed by a bit of score not heard in the clip and later re-stated and completed.

Sorry, Jay!

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Amazing analysis Marcus! I, too, think the score will be an entirely different experience on soundtrack than just in the film, especially if Williams crafted his usual listening experience for it.

Glad to hear the piano finally gets a workout in a Star Wars score; it's about time the palette of his orchestra was expanded for these films and piano has been all-too-rare a contributor.

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How did people feel regarding (MAJOR SPOILER!)

the music for Han's death? I thought it was quite underwhelming, for what is supposed to be a big moment in the saga.

I liked that it was scored as a personal tragedy, and not an intergalactic one.

Which track is that?

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How did people feel regarding (MAJOR SPOILER!)

the music for Han's death? I thought it was quite underwhelming, for what is supposed to be a big moment in the saga.

I liked that it was scored as a personal tragedy, and not an intergalactic one.

I'm not saying I would have wanted something grand, just something that felt a bit memorable, instead of (what sounds to me like) anonymous underscore. Maybe I'll change my mind once I listen to the OST, but right now, I thought that moment was a bit of a letdown.

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I'm going to listen to the OST now. Complete cue list and musical analysis of the music as used in the film coming later! Stay tuned!

In favor of a more qualitative rundown, it might take some time to assemble the list and analysis. I can't guarantee it will be finished by tonight (GMT + 1), but I'll do my absolute best.

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Hi

I have see the film this morning, and Hear the music by John Williams.

Confirm in end titles the conducting by Williams and Ross.

Great theme from Ray and March of the Resistance.

I expected somthing more for Kylo Ren theme. nothing reference music to darth vader theme

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Just to make sure nobody who wants to read about the music as heard in the film gets spoiled in any way. I mean, it's totally possible some people are interested in reading the comments here, not willing to read any spoilers at the same time.

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Just to make sure nobody who wants to read about the music as heard in the film gets spoiled in any way. I mean, it's totally possible some people are interested in reading the comments here, not willing to read any spoilers at the same time.

This.

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Just to make sure nobody who wants to read about the music as heard in the film gets spoiled in any way. I mean, it's totally possible some people are interested in reading the comments here, not willing to read any spoilers at the same time.

OK, fair enough.

Your last spoiler tag was unnecessary, though. ;)

You never know! It might get some hopes down.

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Wow, I just got out. A lot of thoughts. On my way home so won't even try to write it with my mobile. Yeah, that music in that tv spot was used before the credits. I liked it and thought it was Williams right from the start. I agree that the score was a minor disappointment but I still find it great. Too early to rank the scores just from one viewing too and without several album listens. I bet it has leaked now. I have a lot to catch up with I bet...

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