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Michael Giacchino's Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (2016)


mrbellamy
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Strange question but does the Jedha Arrival track contain film sound effects around the 1:53 mark or is that weird sound a part of the score? It sounds like a ship flying overhead. I'd put a link but I'm listening on Google Play.

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Listening again to the music in Krennic's Aspirations, specifically the big build up to Vader's castle, I'm not sure the film was poorly spotted so much as Gia just missed the mark tonally or just his usual lack of command of the full orchestra. This scene does call for BIG music, dark, evil sounding stuff. He just overshoots the mark a bit.

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49 minutes ago, artguy360 said:

Listening again to the music in Krennic's Aspirations, specifically the big build up to Vader's castle, I'm not sure the film was poorly spotted so much as Gia just missed the mark tonally or just his usual lack of command of the full orchestra. This scene does call for BIG music, dark, evil sounding stuff. He just overshoots the mark a bit.

 

That fanfare sounded like MG was trying to do his own version of this:

 

 

 

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Do people seriously still care about the Oscars? I thought everyone realised by now that it has nothing to do with quality, and only to do with the lipstick you choose to kiss people's asses with.

 

 

Just a side note: I'm currently watching Force Awakens on SkyStarWars, and man the music is low. Some of my favourite moments are basically muted.

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27 minutes ago, Romão said:

 

That fanfare sounded like MG was trying to do his own version of this:

 

 

 

 

I don't think Giacchino's scores are capable of having a brass section sound even remotely like this. His recording style is so dry, muffled and muddy.

 

But yeah, something resembling this would have made an excellent fanfare for that wide shot of Mustafar. 

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1 hour ago, Lockdown said:

Awards Circuit is saying BFG may come up in the top 10 this year. That says something.

 

Wrong thread? 

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On 12/18/2016 at 6:38 PM, loert said:

 

Yikes, these guys arrange fast! 

 

 

The opening and the Imperial March statement remind me of Confrontation with Count Dooku and Finale:

 

 

 

Huh, I definitely noticed a major similarity to that AOTC cue -- but it was here! Compare to 2:47 from Confrontation. 

 

 

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On 19. Dezember 2016 at 0:42 AM, Quintus said:

 

March of the Resistance > The Hobbit scores. 

 

Some people apparently just can't move on.

Taking a cheap shot at Middle -Earth music because you don't like my opinion on something is getting really dumb by now.

 

Seriously, it's come and gone two years ago, do yourself a favor and stop acting like a kindergarten child who holds a grudge against little Timmy because he accidentally took your shovel two years ago.

 

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Ok, listening to the OST now (I do enjoy some of the music) I think 1 of the biggest mistakes Giacchino makes with this score is having major themes sound intentionally similar to existing themes like how the first 2 notes of the Hope theme are the same as the Rebel Fanfare and how much of the Imperial Theme and Krennic Theme are cribbed from the Imperial March. There's a sound-a-like fake out nature to these themes (and other moments) that hurt more than they help. Less bothersome but still a bit annoying are the what I assume to be unintentional similarities in parts of Jyn's Theme and The Guardian of the Whills Theme to Across the Stars. 

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I saw Rogue One in 3D Imax in a good theater, it was a fun action movie. Definitely looked and felt like a Star Wars movie. Felicity Jones, Jiang Wen, and Donnie Yen are especially good. Personally I liked the Force Awakens better, but this is definitely worth seeing.

 

The first live action Star Wars film not scored by John Williams missed his magical presence. Michael Giacchino delivered one of his better scores that really helps the film. But the classical tradition is not his thing, so it's about the sound and moments. Some cool effects. Hope is probably the most emotional cue. Lots of Williams themes throughout the score, makes me wonder if the film was temped with classic Star Wars. The Williams scores have a deeper structure that's easy to hear if you play The Jedi Steps after any RO cue. Emotion, structure, and effects all in one.

John Williams *is* Star Wars, he carries the films into timeless mythology. It's true that MG is a different personalitiy from a different era. But there probably isn't anyone on today's A list of composers besides Williams who could add to the legacy. Sure, I can really like a film that is simply well made entertainment. But the bar is set real high for SW. Maybe Bear McCreary or Laura Karpman could, if given time and minimal interference.

It does raise the question of how many times the first two Star Wars movies can be imitated before people want something new and inspired. For now it's good space opera, all credit to Disney for addressing freedom and rebellion. I'm still on board :)

 
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6 hours ago, gkgyver said:

 

Some people apparently just can't move on.

Taking a cheap shot at Middle -Earth music because you don't like my opinion on something is getting really dumb by now.

 

Seriously, it's come and gone two years ago, do yourself a favor and stop acting like a kindergarten child who holds a grudge against little Timmy because he accidentally took your shovel two years ago.

 

 

It's so easy to wind you up gkgyver! 

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12 hours ago, Jay said:

KK is absolutely correct on both accounts

 

The Oscar nominees will be 5 out of these 10 options

 

Justin Hurwitz - La La Land (is going to win)
Abel Korzeniowski - Nocturnal Animals

Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross - Patriots Day

Nicholas Britell - Moonlight

Dustin O'Halloran & Hauschka - Lion

Hans Zimmer & pals - Hidden Figures

Mica Levi - Jackie

Jeff Danna & Danna - Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk

Alexandre Desplat - Florence Foster Jenkins or The Light Between Oceans or American Pastoral

 

If any big budget picture gets in there, it would be Moana, The Jungle Book, or even The BFG before Rogue One

 

Nine Inch Nails need to fuck off already. 

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I have krennic theme on my head lately.

 

But the imperial march should have scored that moment. heck. it just dawned on me, Giacchino SHOULD have adapted the unused music from ESB for the Executor revelation. Would have been great to hear/see that kickass endition played over that scene.

 

:(

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2 minutes ago, Luke Skywalker said:

 

But the imperial march should have scored that moment. heck. it just dawned on me, Giacchino SHOULD have adapted the unused music from ESB for the Executor revelation. Would have been great to hear/see that kickass endition played over that scene.

 

:(

 

And to be fair maybe he would of thought of that had he had more than three and a half weeks to complete an entire film. 

 

Honestly I can't fathom how an entire film can be scored that quickly. But then again I can't fathom how to write a film score anyway ha. 

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3 hours ago, TownerFan said:

For me it's one of the more frustrating pieces, as it sounds like he thought of writing a fugato-like piece, or at least something contrapuntally interesting... and instead he dropped the ball off almost immediately.

 

It does leave a little something to be desired in that sense after being so spoiled with "March of the Resistance" (not to mention "The Barrel Chase" which this obviously borrows from and is the better version of this melody) but I still find it probably the most entertaining piece on the album and exciting in the film, and the Force theme references are satisfactorily integrated albeit pretty straightforward.

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10 hours ago, Miz said:

I think that would've been a strength if the themes had their own strength. Correct my music-theory newbness, but he's not into long-line melodies, uses lots of short intervals and repeating phrases in his themes - and they seem to get simpler and simpler. I wish he'd had longer to create, because none of these new themes or their presentation really grab me. And they're merely serviceable in-film...

...What I'd like to read more of is actually discussion about the actual music. Argue it's strengths and shortcomings, in detail, so that I can understand what makes a composer good at what they do. Explain to me how Williams can create magic where Giacchino cannot and I'm going to learn from this board and you people - please critique my musical understanding of the score as I have attempted to analyse it...

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cUBUlKgsNK8

 

 

All right, let's start with Miz's observation about long note melodies by looking at an actual long-note melody.

 

The Jedi Steps cue begins with an 8 note theme in the celli, that rises through the orchestra to the flutes and oboes. This represents Rey's determined searching, and is more than an introduction. It will return at a key moment. A simple flourish in the celeste leads to the Jedi Steps Theme, a 16 note melody that's in the celli and violas. It represents Rey's complex relation with the Force. This is reinforced by the appearance of the Force theme itself at the end of the cue. The Jedi Steps theme starts and ends on a descending 5th, the inverse of the Star Wars Main Theme. The whole cue is in 2 flats, same as the Star Wars Main Theme, but now the relative minor key.

Then the flourish returns and the JST is played by the winds in a higher register, but now it's 18 notes and ends on a rising half-step. And lands on a massive Dark orchestral motif that is strikingly similar to the Imperial March ending. The brass make their first entry in minor harmony.

 

A good place to look for the difference between a great composer and the talented and skillful is in the accompaniment. The cue opens with a simple pulse in the celeste, lots of space, then a rapid texture in the violins. Gradually more instruments join the texture, each playing a slightly different pattern. The patterns are based on bits of the JST. They build with growing dissonance, but stay clear of the melody register, until a full orchestral climax with the Dark motif.

All these structural elements are easily felt by the audience as deeper emotion, unity and dramatic impact. For example, the sequence begins with stunning epic cinematography, while the music focus on the character's innermost thoughts. Until the confrontation.

 

This structure is planned from the first sketch by Williams. And we're only looking at an overview of 1 minute.

 

Now let's look at a Giacchino cue, say the one mentioned above, Rogue One.

 

It begins with full orchestra and the strings, brass and percussion are playing lots of notes in the same general range. The Rogue One theme is played twice by the violins and violas with brass accents, then we get a minor fanfare played twice in muted brass. Next the Force Theme is played quickly by the horns. All of this is accompanied by a fast short pattern in the celli, basses, and  piano that keeps repeating. May be derived from the ROT, but Then there's a quick orchestral swell based on a scale. Now the ROT in the low strings, piano and woodwinds, then a simplified version with Timpani accents. Then fragments of the theme repeat between the violins and celli/bass until the RO theme returns.

 

There's bits of dramatic counterpoint in there, but they aren't developed. It's busy action music, so it's not going to be as subtle as a dramatic sequence. He's following a lot of film composition techniques. But If John Williams were doing it there would be more variety in the orchestration, and the themes would be more expressive and cover a wider range. Especially the accompaniment would be cleaner, with more variety, and be related to the main themes in a more subtle and resonant way.


The biggest difference is William's melodic genius that makes his best themes strong enough to be quickly memorized by the audience, yet complex enough that harmony and accompaniment patterns can be derived from them. And the long term development of ideas that gives symphonic solidity to the structure. That's just not Michael's thing. He excels at blending pop and orchestral, like The Incredibles.

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Jesus, do we really need every other post in this thread wanking over how much better a composer Williams is to Giacchino? We all know that. We're all literally posting on a Williams fan site. It's okay to not like Gia, and it's okay to not like his score for Rogue One, but really, we get it. No need for the pseudo-intellectual deconstructions of musical form and theory every five minutes.

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11 hours ago, leeallen01 said:

I think the piece 'Rogue One' is his best combination of new and old. I really like the great strings, which really give the piece drive, and are clearly Williams inspired. And especially at 1:40  onward is his best use of Williams' previous material. It's my favourite use of the Force theme in the score, as it leads into the tease of Leia's theme. Really nice and fun stuff.

 

 

This cue is definitely the most SW like of all the music on the OST. It reminds me a lot of the Star Wars Rebels main theme, in its strings and progression, although much better. It's got a "This is how John Williams does things, right?" vibe to it. Here's the SWR theme:

 

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2 minutes ago, DarthDementous said:

let me just say that I infinitely prefer Michael Giacchino's work on Star Wars to everything done by Kevin Kiner.

Oh yeah! I have tried few times to give a chance to Kiner's creations, but just couldn't handle them.

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That might very well be the case. For me, it's only another reminder of my disaffection for a hobby gone sour, because as it is, SW Episode IV.1 will join the long ranks of current scores not finding their way into my collection not because of an active dislike in the sense that i care that much, but because they just do not rouse my interest musically. I am just not that interested in the movies than i am in the music.

 

 

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We all learn from the great masters and understanding their work is part of the joy. There's been a shift away from melody and structure that is probably most obvious when someone tries to compose for Star Wars. I hope that composers and fans appreciate the traditions and keep them alive, along with the new stuff. When I score a movie I design the music to meet concert standards when possible. It's what I believe in :)

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Krennic's theme certainly grew on me, especially in the opening track. I still dislike the imperial theme and the hope theme though.

 

A lot of the tracks in the first half of the album contain a decent quote of a theme followed by 2 minutes of boredom. It isn't a very good listening experience.

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Yup the first half of the OST is by far the weakest music released.  The FYC tracks and the second half of the OST are way better

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Project Stardust is definitely a highlight of the FYC and really should have been on the OST.

 

To be fair, although I've been fairly critical of the score, there is a lot to like. I still think it deserves no more than 3/5 - its themes needed to be much stronger and a lot of the action is pretty generic, but there are a lot of enjoyable moments.

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I just came back from my second viewing of the film, and there was a few cues that remain unreleased that are really cool, in my opinion. It seems we're missing a number of cues from the first half of the film, and even near the ending as well.

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