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The power of John Williams: The Map Room without music


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First video is without the music. Second video is with the music. The difference is like night and day! First video is slightly boring and rather lengthy, an archaeologist working alone and the sun is shining through a hole in the cave. So what, one might think. The second video shows us the most exciting, exhilating, magical and wonderful moment of the archaeologist's life, and we are witness to this miracle! 

 

I swear, the power of this scene comes 80% from the music!

 

Needless to say, not every scene scored by JW is dependent on the music to such an extent, but this is ridiculous! What other examples can you think of where the music plays such a huge role, it almost eclipses the movie itself (no pun intended)? Scenes which, without music are boring, but with music, suddenly turn heart-poundingly and mind-blowingly exciting?

 

 

 

 

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The Map Room with no score makes it feel like a movie made 20 years earlier - a period when it seemed like films had vast sections with no music. I tend to connect less with those sorts of movies beca

First video is without the music. Second video is with the music. The difference is like night and day! First video is slightly boring and rather lengthy, an archaeologist working alone and the sun is

Funny stuff! I just saw these outtakes for the first time... 😂     

23 minutes ago, Horner's Dynamic Range said:

It's shows how overbearing and manipulative Williams' music is. It's just a scene of a guy going into a room and shining some light with a stick.

 

It actually shows how much Spielberg is dependent on Williams to tell his (Spielberg's) stories!

 

The ending of E.T., without the music, would just be a bunch of neighborhood kids riding around on their bikes with a weird reptilian-looking creature. And then they possibly fell asleep and dreamed a UFO came. 😂

 

With the music, it becomes the most beloved, heartwarming, and beautiful film ever! 

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3 hours ago, Richard Penna said:

The Map Room with no score makes it feel like a movie made 20 years earlier - a period when it seemed like films had vast sections with no music. I tend to connect less with those sorts of movies because the music gives the scene a sense of pacing.

 

To be fair, Raiders was made 38 (!!!) years earlier! Unless you mean, of course, 20 years before 1981.

 

Anyway, there was the Golden Age of film music from around 1930 until 1950, and then that gradually died down when everybody started listening to pop and rock music, and then John Williams appeared on the scene in the 1970's and, almost single-handedly, with Jaws, Star Wars, Superman, and the Indiana Jones series brought the Golden Age back.

 

The fact that movies today are still scored with large symphonic orchestras are, in many ways, thanks to John Williams. Yes, there are many other film composers, but John Williams probably has been and still is the greatest influence, not only on the film studios and directors, but on the composers themselves. 

 

 

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Last year at the Hollywood Bowl concert, Spielberg came out for the second half as JW's guest.

 

He went on to tell stories about working with JW.  One of the things he talked about is what scenes were like without music.

 

His example was the first five minutes of The Last Crusade.  The music really does make a difference.

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On 1/26/2019 at 7:26 PM, geom_00 said:

Last year at the Hollywood Bowl concert, Spielberg came out for the second half as JW's guest.

 

He went on to tell stories about working with JW.  One of the things he talked about is what scenes were like without music.

 

His example was the first five minutes of The Last Crusade.  The music really does make a difference.

 

Yeah, I saw that.

 

Even Jurassic Park will seem a bit lame without the music, I think, especially the dino action scenes and also this one:

 

Without the music, it's just a guy with two kids climbing over a fence on a beautiful, sunny day. With the music, it becomes the most thrilling adventure of a lifetime! 

 

 

 

Point is, Spielberg seems to be a bit more dependent on John Williams's music than other directors (possibly with the exception of George Lucas). 

 

James Cameron's movies like Terminator or Titanic or Avatar seem to work even without the music. Sure, they will lose some of the impact, but they won't seem lame or boring.

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2 hours ago, Fabulin said:

It is also a case of expectations; once you see a scene scored, a vanilla scene appears unfinished

 

This.

 

This could apply equally as 'The power of <name here>'. There cannot be a single film composer working today who hasn't produced a piece of music that transformed its scene.

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On record, none of these movies themselves (the finished products) are lame. These are among the finest examples of movie making.

 

My point is simply that, without the music, some scenes in some movies seem to lose most (not all, of course, but most) of their impact. Spielberg movies are famously reliant on John Williams's music. That's neither good nor bad, it's simply fact. Spielberg just knows how to effectively use film music, with spectacular results.... arguably more successfully than any director in history. It's a good thing for JW too, because Spielberg has offered him opportunities to stand out and shine countless times! 

 

If we assume that overall emotional impact of a scene on the viewer is 100%, film music might typically provide 5% - 40%. In John Williams's case, it's very often 40%, 50%, 60%, sometimes even 70% (like the examples on this page), meaning most of the suspense and impact come from the music. That said, it's all rather subjective, of course; this is not exact science, after all.

 

Hence my question, what you guys think are the best examples of the effectiveness of music--to a point where, if the scene in question is presented without music, it might appear "lame"...

 

19 hours ago, Warrior of Wet Dreams said:

More like the weakness of Steven Spielberg!

 

No.

 

Films like Saving Private Ryan, Munich, and even Schindler's List prove he can make awesome movies without relying too much on music.

 

21 hours ago, Fabulin said:

I never would have thought, for example, that there was music in Terminator. 

 

Yes, that's my point. Music in The Terminator hardly stands out. And yet, the movie overall works perfectly. One of the most suspenseful, innovative, and successful movies of all time!

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