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 Posted:   May 26, 2014 - 2:12 AM   
 By:   Chris Rimmer   (Member)

Just finished listening to this, most enjoyable, can't wait to see/hear how it works in the film.

 
 Posted:   May 27, 2014 - 8:01 AM   
 By:   Valiant65   (Member)

The CD is in stores now. My guess is this will be included in many year end Top Ten Lists.

 
 
 Posted:   May 27, 2014 - 1:27 PM   
 By:   Kev McGann   (Member)

I've just sampled some tracks on Spotify (thanks solium) and it's quite stunning.
Definitely a return to form for JNH, recalling his sterling work from around 1990-2005.
This CD will be mine very soon.

 
 
 Posted:   May 27, 2014 - 3:22 PM   
 By:   MikeP   (Member)

WOW.

This is going to be the score to beat this year...stunning.

It just sounds magnificent... a huge orchestral effort. Every other score this year just took a backseat. It is that good.

Orchestra, choir... huge action tracks and lovely, lyrical ones... beginning with the sinister-building-to-majestic Maleficent Suite - yikes. What a knockout of a score.

 
 Posted:   May 28, 2014 - 6:48 AM   
 By:   WillGoldNewtonBarryGrusin   (Member)

This just in from a generally pretty good review of the film in "The Hollywood Reporter":

"The comedy is never overstated, whereas the swell and bombast of James Newton Howard’s score comes on strong in the early sequences before finding a groove."

Swell and bombast. I haven´t heard the score, was only delighted by the samples. But again it seems that a reviewer considers "old school"-orchestral sounds as "bombast". Well...

 
 Posted:   May 28, 2014 - 8:04 AM   
 By:   DavidCoscina   (Member)

This just in from a generally pretty good review of the film in "The Hollywood Reporter":

"The comedy is never overstated, whereas the swell and bombast of James Newton Howard’s score comes on strong in the early sequences before finding a groove."

Swell and bombast. I haven´t heard the score, was only delighted by the samples. But again it seems that a reviewer considers "old school"-orchestral sounds as "bombast". Well...


Keep in mind most film reviewers just studied journalism and not actual film nor music so they are hardly qualified to make astute observations on film scores.

 
 Posted:   May 28, 2014 - 8:17 AM   
 By:   TM   (Member)

Listened to it a number of times so far. It's nice, but...

There's some standout parts (and more to be discovered, I'm sure, on subsequent listens). Old-school JNH no doubt, but I can't help but notice that each time I get to the end of the score I don't really remember anything that I've heard, save a few snippets. In that way I can't help but compare it to Snow White. I really REALLY wish that the lovely melody in the second track could have been repeated/developed more on the album, but I understand that it's probably short-lived by dictates of the story.

To me, the flavor of everything is orchestral and distinctly JNH (which certainly makes it exceptional these days), but I still miss the hummable melodies of some of his other scores...I hope I'm just missing something that will reveal itself a few listens down the line.

The song is creepy as hell, by the way.

 
 
 Posted:   May 28, 2014 - 8:18 AM   
 By:   desplatfan1   (Member)

Sounds beautiful. There's some parts where you can hear some type of operatic, but emotional writing, without being too restrained or too bombastic (True Love's Kiss is one of the standout cues of the year). The children's choir gives a Elfman sound but still canon on JNH's style. Also, I'm the only one who heard a bit of Silvestri on Maleficent Is Captured? There's a moment where you think JNH is about to play the Avengers theme lol

 
 Posted:   May 28, 2014 - 8:18 AM   
 By:   solium   (Member)

This just in from a generally pretty good review of the film in "The Hollywood Reporter":

"The comedy is never overstated, whereas the swell and bombast of James Newton Howard’s score comes on strong in the early sequences before finding a groove."

Swell and bombast. I haven´t heard the score, was only delighted by the samples. But again it seems that a reviewer considers "old school"-orchestral sounds as "bombast". Well...


Keep in mind most film reviewers just studied journalism and not actual film nor music so they are hardly qualified to make astute observations on film scores.


Nowadays critics are a dime a dozen. Most of them probably never studied literature, or film. Their opinions are as important as any other person in the theater.

 
 Posted:   May 28, 2014 - 9:00 AM   
 By:   WillGoldNewtonBarryGrusin   (Member)

This just in from a generally pretty good review of the film in "The Hollywood Reporter":

"The comedy is never overstated, whereas the swell and bombast of James Newton Howard’s score comes on strong in the early sequences before finding a groove."

Swell and bombast. I haven´t heard the score, was only delighted by the samples. But again it seems that a reviewer considers "old school"-orchestral sounds as "bombast". Well...


Keep in mind most film reviewers just studied journalism and not actual film nor music so they are hardly qualified to make astute observations on film scores.


True. I just detect how the taste has changed. What many here (including me) like, the "old school"-orchestral score, is considered too big. Remember what reviewers said about Yared´s beautiful "Amelia"?

While I have come around on the contemporary score (otherwise referred to as "droning" by many), I find it very silly when reviewers consider that sound less bombastic. Because it just isn´t.

 
 
 Posted:   May 28, 2014 - 6:12 PM   
 By:   ryankeaveney   (Member)

Listened to it a number of times so far. It's nice, but...

There's some standout parts (and more to be discovered, I'm sure, on subsequent listens). Old-school JNH no doubt, but I can't help but notice that each time I get to the end of the score I don't really remember anything that I've heard, save a few snippets. In that way I can't help but compare it to Snow White. I really REALLY wish that the lovely melody in the second track could have been repeated/developed more on the album, but I understand that it's probably short-lived by dictates of the story.

To me, the flavor of everything is orchestral and distinctly JNH (which certainly makes it exceptional these days), but I still miss the hummable melodies of some of his other scores...I hope I'm just missing something that will reveal itself a few listens down the line.

The song is creepy as hell, by the way.


Kind of have to agree here... The main theme just isn't at the ATLANTIS, PETER PAN, DINOSAUR, etc. level that JNH is capable of.

 
 Posted:   May 28, 2014 - 7:42 PM   
 By:   Sirusjr   (Member)

So far I am not sure what to think other than some of the cues totally overdo it on the bass, especially where the percussion comes on strong. I had to turn down my subwoofer so that it didn't drive me crazy. I don't think the mix destroys it but it certainly could have been done more naturally.

 
 Posted:   May 29, 2014 - 6:54 AM   
 By:   solium   (Member)

It does sound like classic JNH. Parts of the score are fantastic (and familiar). However it should be said, just because it's orchestral doesn't make it great. Wasn't the case before and it's not the case today. It seems kinda busy and a bit aimless at times. Still a welcome change from 98% percent of the scores we get nowadays. Good effort and I will purchase it. But a bit lacking at times.

 
 Posted:   May 29, 2014 - 8:45 AM   
 By:   Shaun Rutherford   (Member)

However it should be said, just because it's orchestral doesn't make it great. It seems kinda busy and a bit aimless at times.

You just described every Michael Giacchino score.

 
 Posted:   May 29, 2014 - 9:13 AM   
 By:   Sirusjr   (Member)

However it should be said, just because it's orchestral doesn't make it great. It seems kinda busy and a bit aimless at times.

You just described every Michael Giacchino score.


Of course. That is why I and many others make such a big deal about themes. Most modern composers seem to have difficulty writing a coherent score without proper themes.

 
 
 Posted:   May 29, 2014 - 4:11 PM   
 By:   JamesSouthall   (Member)

My review, if anyone's interested:

http://www.movie-wave.net/maleficent/

 
 Posted:   May 29, 2014 - 4:42 PM   
 By:   TM   (Member)

However it should be said, just because it's orchestral doesn't make it great. It seems kinda busy and a bit aimless at times.

You just described every Michael Giacchino score.


Of course. That is why I and many others make such a big deal about themes. Most modern composers seem to have difficulty writing a coherent score without proper themes.


Sorry, but that's kind of a ridiculous statement. Giacchino's Pixar and Trek scores in particular are filled with proper, hummable, long-line themes. Just sayin'...

 
 Posted:   May 29, 2014 - 6:34 PM   
 By:   Shaun Rutherford   (Member)

I didn't say anything about his themes (he has shown himself capable of being a tunesmith for his more cartoony scores in the past, that's for sure, but, from listening to the concert versions of his Into Darkness themes and this new Apes one, it sounds like a lot of nothing to me---there's an orchestra, I can see and hear them, but it's just filling time). Anymore, Giacchino sounds like he's spinning his wheels, what with the constant dun-dun-DAHHHHHHHHHH sound in seemingly every cue.

 
 Posted:   May 30, 2014 - 9:40 AM   
 By:   WillGoldNewtonBarryGrusin   (Member)

I didn't say anything about his themes (he has shown himself capable of being a tunesmith for his more cartoony scores in the past, that's for sure, but, from listening to the concert versions of his Into Darkness themes and this new Apes one, it sounds like a lot of nothing to me---there's an orchestra, I can see and hear them, but it's just filling time). Anymore, Giacchino sounds like he's spinning his wheels, what with the constant dun-dun-DAHHHHHHHHHH sound in seemingly every cue.

I respectfully disagree with your opinion on Giacchino´s work. But I agree with you on this: a score that contains themes performed by a big orchestra does not necessarily have to be a good score. "Maleficent", however, IMO delivers the goods.

 
 
 Posted:   May 30, 2014 - 10:08 AM   
 By:   John B. Archibald   (Member)

Saw MALEFICENT last night.

Has practically NOTHING to do with the animated version, even though the dialogue at the cradle, when Maleficent intones her curse, is practically word-for-word the same as the 1959 version, though it does not include Maleficent's method of transport, for reasons having to do with the updated "revisal" of this new version.

All in all, the thing reminded me of a combination of GAME OF THRONES with AVATAR. There are numerous moments reminding me of both films. There is also a lot of violence, mostly involving men in armor getting thrown long distances, though, not unpredictably, considering they're opting for the family audience, there is really no overt violence.

I can get into a number of discussion, which would include multiple spoilers, but, since I don't know how to cover up the spoiler sections, I shall refrain.

But, generally, I would say this film was kind of boring, with nothing much happening during most of it, and the plot structure oblique at best. As I predicted above, Maleficent as a character is presented as a misunderstood victim, who gets her revenge, then thinks better of it. Nothing like the pure evil of the character in the cartoon version. And the "Forbidden Mountains," where she lives in a ruined castle, have been transformed into a kind of AVATAR paradise.

I liked the score, all things considered; there's a love theme for the princess and prince that's very nice, which seems not to be present elsewhere. And the end credits are mostly covered with a vocal version of "Once Upon a Dream," from the 1959 version, though here sung in a much slower version, by a singer with a kind of droning voice, which pretty much takes the life out of the song.

I will get the score, because I get everything by JNH, and appreciate it, but don't think it's by any means among his greatest scores.

 
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