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News of the World - James Newton Howard


WampaRat
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10 hours ago, WampaRat said:

@Edmilson did you get an advance copy for review purposes? Can’t wait to listen to it myself. Also looking forward to the film:)

 

It had leaked yesterday, but I believe today it is already available on the usual streaming services.

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I listened to this on YouTube in suite form at work today, and it was really nice. I think it's rather unlike anything JNH's done before - it's got that Western tinge, but with a feeling of loss/melancholy throughout. Also, the complete lack of any action material makes it a much more abstract listen.

 

I disagree with Thor on length - it flew by for me. I mean, one or two spots where not a lot happened perhaps, but overall I enjoyed it.

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  • 2 weeks later...

And outside the US, it's being release on Netflix! I wonder how fast that will make us want an expansion.

 

Amazon thus far only has an import for pre-order, but it's up on 7Digital in flac. Looks like they've just gone for a delayed physical release.

 

I've been listening to this a lot recently - highlights being What Else Can You Teach Me? and Kidd Visits Maria, but the whole album is a very nice hour or so of downbeat Americana, with some catchy moments. Johanna Returns Home also has some nice synth work, and Dime Mountain is surprisingly engaging considering it's nearly 10 minutes of tense music; Now For Some Federal News shows JNH's strength at slow, strong, dramatic music, as does the middle of Kidd Defies FarleyEnd Titles are also a nice reprisal.

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49 minutes ago, Richard Penna said:

And outside the US, it's being release on Netflix! I wonder how fast that will make us want an expansion.

 

It's already much too long at 72 minutes. It's not a type of a score that can sustain such a length, much less an expansion.

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Yeah, I have to agree with Thor on that one.

 

The OST is already very long, and presents all the major highlights. Unless there's a great unreleased cue in the movie, I don't think this one needs to be expanded.

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1 hour ago, Thor said:

 

It's not a type of a score that can sustain such a length, much less an expansion.

 

Your opinion. We've been through this many times.

 

It may indeed be that there's little to no additional interesting music. I'm merely expressing the possibility, as someone who doesn't find the release overly long.

 

I'm coming at this more from the perspective that I've historically not seen many films in the cinema, much less during Covid, so being able to watch a film like this with a score I like, is rather novel. If there's any good unreleased music, we're going to notice it.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Finally got a chance to see this. A simple story told beautifully. And Howard’s score fit the film like a glove. Mixed well I thought. Couldn’t notice any unreleased music that stood out btw.
 

If you’re at all interested from the trailer or from having listened to the score already I highly recommend seeing the film. Happy New Year all!

 

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I've been listening to the score a lot. It's probably the 2020 score I listened the most. 

 

I chose some highlights, like this cue, which contains my favorite performance of the main theme:

 

 

This one is very touching and emotional:

 

 

And this one reminded me of Santaolalla's The Last of Us 1 and 2:

 

 

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I've also listened to it a few times. It's going to get an honourable mention, but it won't break the top 10 of the year. Too many perfunctory cues amidst the highlight cues for that.

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1 minute ago, Thor said:

Too many perfunctory cues amidst the highlight cues for that.

 

Yeah, I agree. It's why I decided to trim the OST album to the highlights I liked. Cues like Dime Mountain and Kid Defies Farley did nothing for me.

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Interesting... I really like Dime Mountain. Plenty of tension and interesting orchestration for me. Sometimes JNH's suspense scoring is really boring, and sometimes it's engaging - this happens to be the latter case for me.

 

The film doesn't show on Netflix for me yet, but when it does, I'm really looking forward to seeing it.

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I think people will find a better appreciation for cues like “Dime Mountain” and especially “Kidd Defies Farley” after having viewed the film. 
 

I love how “Kidd Defies Farley” works in the scene. The way the fiddle/violins slowly build and play against each other from 1:15-3:30 in that cue - I can only describe it as “beautiful tension” 

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Makes no difference to me if I see the film or not. But I do aim to make a playlist out of the material, like you have done, Edmilson - and hope it will gain in appreciation then. But that's a project for further down the road.

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Do you not have the slightest desire to watch the film and see how the score works?

 

I've had so many instances where a score did little for me, then I saw certain scenes and the music came alive.

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6 minutes ago, Richard Penna said:

Do you not have the slightest desire to watch the film and see how the score works?

 

Sure. Loads. But it won't have any effect on my soundtrack listening experience.

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Not suggesting that; merely that cues that sound uninteresting on their own often open up when you view them in context.

 

If Thor doesn't want to do that - no problems :) 

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My favorite scores of all time are also connected to my favorite movies of all time. I love reliving the film through the music (if it’s a good film;) 
 

 

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8 minutes ago, WampaRat said:

My favorite scores of all time are also connected to my favorite movies of all time. I love reliving the film through the music (if it’s a good film;) 

Yeas, but not seldomly when you listen to the music in the actual film they are making some really unpleasent edits to the score. For me the perfect example:

 

Here I strongly prefer the version of the OST.

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@Thor

If you’re still looking for a decent whittled-down playlist for News of the World, here’s my selection:

 

Captain Jefferson Kidd

There is no time for Stories

Arriving at Red River

Johannas New Clothes

The Road to Dallas

Kidd Defies Farley

Dust Storm

A Gift

Kidd Visits Maria

Miss Johanna Kidd

End Titles

 

You can even shave this down more if you’d like. For me this encompasses the highlights and some “connecting tissue” cues to tell a decent narrative.

 

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Thanks for the tip, Wamparat. Let's compare and see how they correspond when I get to it.

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29 minutes ago, WampaRat said:

@Thor

If you’re still looking for a decent whittled-down playlist for News of the World, here’s my selection:

 

Captain Jefferson Kidd

There is no time for Stories

Arriving at Red River

Johannas New Clothes

The Road to Dallas

Kidd Defies Farley

Dust Storm

A Gift

Kidd Visits Maria

Miss Johanna Kidd

End Titles

 

You can even shave this down more if you’d like. For me this encompasses the highlights and some “connecting tissue” cues to tell a decent narrative.

 

 

No "Johanna Returns Home"? I really liked that cue, one of my favorites of the score. But I can understand it not being in your playlist, since it's a very understated and melancholic track.

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Yeah I think I just liked the eeriness of “dust storm” after “Kidd Defies Farley” just for a little sonic variety. But that scene (Johanna returns home) is heart rending in the film. I may revise my playlist.   

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  • 1 month later...

We planned on watching this film last night only to go to Netflix and not find it there;  After some quick research it turned out its only on Netflix in every single country except ours; Here it's $20 VOD.  Oh well, guess I won't see it before the Oscars then.  Lame.

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Yeah, it's a decent film with a great performance (as usual) from Hanks. 

 

JNH's score works great in the context of the movie. It's his best shot at an Oscar nomination in years. As much as I like his more traditional blockbuster scores (Fantastic Beasts, Maleficent, Last Airbender, etc), movies like this one and A Hidden Life allow him to explore a different side of his musical sensibilities.

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I liked both movie and score, it's a very smart approach to slowly reveal the Captain theme through the movie, and not overplay it.

In the album, JNH altered the order of some tracks, probably to have this theme spread through it. I very much prefer to hear There is no time for stories in front of Kidd visits Maria. 

Hope he gets an Oscar nod for this. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

New JNH interview where he talks about scoring the movie, collaborating with Paul Greengrass and recording during the pandemic. He also talks a bit about Raya and Fantastic Beasts 3.

 

https://deadline.com/2021/02/news-of-the-world-composer-james-newton-howard-universal-pictures-interview-news-1234699898/

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I didn't know they finished shooting FB3, neither did I know JNH was confirmed to return. Out of all upcoming scores, I think it's the one I'm looking forward to the most! 

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Watched it yesterday. Movie was schmaltzy and predictable, but yes, Hanks (as the moral center of the word) was good and the child was photogenic. The score didn't catch my attention. Shot in large format.

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