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A re-evaluation and appreciation for Crystal Skull’s score


WampaRat
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That's a cool program, @WampaRat! I think the OST doesn't do the score any favors, but you've removed some fluff and added some of the missing goodies. I might try putting together something in this vein too.

 

I think this score as a whole suffers from the inescapable comparisons to its predecessors and to Williams's other work, but it does do a respectable job of supporting the film with a good mixture of old and new.

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The movie is shite, but the score is quite good, probably better than most 2008 Hollywood scores.

 

And I do think that a playlist created from the Recording Sessions for the listening experience is the ideal way of listening the score, so yeah, I'll try your playlist one of these days.

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Thanks everyone. Yeah I really tried to pick the best cues big or small that helped to tell the best musical narrative. Large set pieces, nice reflective moments, moments of dread, humor, romance. All the things that make the previous scores soar and take you on a journey. This score has it all too. It just not all in the OST or you have to pick through the Recording Sessions to get there. 
 

It was a labor of love. And I’m glad my feelings have changed toward this one.

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IF they do expand this ....

They should do what they did with the original expanded E.T.

Drop the (boring) concert arrangements and rerelease it as A SINGLE DISC.

We really don't need more than SEVENTY.NINE MINUTES.

 

Chances of my advice being taken seriously?

Zero.zero😞

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Irina’s theme is worth the price of admission IMO. If nothing else, JW knows how to write a good villain theme, even if the character as portrayed isn’t worth the paper the score is written on.

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I revisited this recently as well, and I find that the overarching problem with the OST is that JW's action scoring and suspense/dramatic scoring are at opposite spectrums of interest.

 

There are other JW albums where the only flaw is arguably the rearrangement, and omission of highlights - TLW for example. The problem with KotCS is that while the action material is generally memorable and exciting (Jungle Chase, and the other chase sequences), the more mysterious material... just isn't, for me.

 

Return, Orellana's Cradle, Oxley's Dilemma, Secret Doors and Scorpions, Grave Robbers, The Snake Pit... I hate to burst the general bubble of positivity on this forum, but this is just such dull scoring.

 

Also, the Skull theme and Irina's theme, I'm just not a fan of. Hence I don't think this is a score which can be improved by a complete presentation; rather by an alternative presentation which focuses on the more upbeat material.

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I think that prolonged section of dull, middling suspense music (from the trip to Peru through until the jungle chase) would be even worse in C&C form.

 

I agree the best version of the score is probably an alternate OST which whittles down all the highlights. The existing one is a terrible representation of the score. 

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My revised 'alternate' album is 44 minutes, of which around 2/3 is on the album.

 

I think the main issue is having most of the opening (warehouse and chase), the campus bits, all of the Jungle Chase material, and a few of the more thematic quieter moments, generally those using the 'father' theme.

 

This also involves dropping pretty much all of the Crystal Skull material itself. It's a perfectly serviceable theme that many here will enjoy - I just don't 'get' it personally.

 

I'm not a complete negative nancy on the album - I've always liked Journey to Akator and especially that source cue in the second half. The Raiders March also gives us a nice, modern, JW-conducted interpretation of the concert piece.

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@Richard Penna yeah, if you ever get the chance, this playlist definitely focuses more on the upbeat parts of the score and roles out the skull theme much more sparingly. I think it works more effectively that way. Huge chunks of suspense material are cut out. But overall its just a much more quieter, less punchy score than the other three. But I find this presentation brings it up a notch or two on the enjoyment scale for me.
 

I know it’s beating a dead horse, but a really wonder what the thought process was in selecting the tracks on  the ost. Perhaps Williams thought “secret doors and scorpions” would engage the listener more than “warehouse escape”? Lol

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I don't think there's any mystery in JW's selection at all - he wants to provide a balance of suspense material and action material, and doesn't find the former boring to him at all.

 

It also won't simply be a case of finding one cue more engaging than the other - if he builds up the album he wants, and creates a flow, then he'll leave cues off if they feel unneeded at that point in the album.

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The movie is pretty lousy, but the score is quite good.  One of those that I don't listen to often, but when I do I wonder why I don't.  

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1 hour ago, Richard Penna said:

I don't think there's any mystery in JW's selection at all - he wants to provide a balance of suspense material and action material, and doesn't find the former boring to him at all.

 

It also won't simply be a case of finding one cue more engaging than the other - if he builds up the album he wants, and creates a flow, then he'll leave cues off if they feel unneeded at that point in the album.

 

Exactly. It's an approach that can totally work when the quieter underscore is still reasonably interesting; unfortunately, there's something about a lot of these moments in KOTCS that just makes me want to yawn.

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It's with a perfect objectivity that I'm going to say that KOTCS is the best 2008 score.

 

The recording sessions are a blessing for me, I'll be happy with any expansion and in heaven if it's contained more than the sessions. I'm not a hardcore Indiana Jones' score fan, promised.

9 Ways To Distinguish A Real Person And A Fake Person

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18 minutes ago, Raiders of the SoundtrArk said:

It's with a perfect objectivity that I'm going to say that KOTCS is the best 2008 score.

 

The recording sessions are a blessing for me, I'll be happy with any expansion and in heaven if it's contained more than the sessions. I'm not a hardcore Indiana Jones' score fan, promised.

 

 

Yeah, but 2008 was a pretty lousy year for Hollywood scores. I mean, Powell's Hancock and Kung Fu Panda were okay, Zimmer's TDK works well in the movie and I like HGW's Prince Caspian, but other than that... :(


The year was so bad for scores that even a middling Williams score like KOTCS is one of the best things that year.

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32 minutes ago, Jay said:

A lot of the music in the film itself is buried under dialogue and sound effects

 

Oh, mercy, you sound like John Williams! :P

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I don't fancy the concert suites… the OST album is okish. But I listened to the recording sessions the other day and the action scenes are terrific, better than the ST, IMHO.

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I'm pleasantly surprised to read so many comments favoring a more listenable presentation over a c and c

 

One person created a FORTY FOUR MINUTE

playlist!

 

That's the spirit#😊😊😁😊

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I don;t need to reevaluate it

 

The OST was disappointing missing so many highlights

The Recording Sessions reveal it's and excellent score on par with Last Crusade at least 

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7 hours ago, Datameister said:

 

Exactly. It's an approach that can totally work when the quieter underscore is still reasonably interesting; unfortunately, there's something about a lot of these moments in KOTCS that just makes me want to yawn.

MR has the same issues.

Some claim the expansion resolves this.

I can't comment definitively as I only have the ost

 But , the iso score put up by Holko didn't sway me.

3 hours ago, Henry Sítrónu said:

I don't fancy the concert suites… the OST album is okish. But I listened to the recording sessions the other day and the action scenes are terrific, better than the ST, IMHO.

Yeah. Leaving off the warehouse\ chase cue is totally baffling.

13 minutes ago, King Mark said:

I don;t need to reevaluate it

 

The OST was disappointing missing so many highlights

The Recording Sessions reveal it's and excellent score on par with Last Crusade at least 

😊

 

Screenshot_2021-03-07-15-26-10.png

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20 minutes ago, Edmilson said:

The real question is: which is the better score, Crystal Skull or Tintin?

 

NOOOOOO!!! NOOOOOOO!!! STOP THIS! YOU CAN'T....

 

image.png

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Eesh, that one's tough for me. KotCS is more conventional Williams overall, but Tintin has its fair share of been-there-heard-that moments too. I do think Crystal Skull's new themes are stronger than those in Tintin.

 

For me it mostly depends on what mood I'm in. But I suppose I find myself in a KotCS mood more often than a Tintin mood, so there's that?

 

In terms of the films themselves, Tintin is the clear winner for me. I actually do get a kick out of KotCS, but it's got a number of problems. Tintin has very few.

 

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7 hours ago, bruce marshall said:

Mutts entrance is classic - IF you get.the reference

 

How did he enter now again?

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