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This is a comments thread about FSM CD: The Illustrated Man
 
 Posted:   Apr 11, 2010 - 6:23 AM   
 By:   Grecchus   (Member)

Just got this and I have to say it's gorgeous.

Hauntingly beautiful with lots of Goldsmith nuances thrown in for good measure. I saw the film quite a while ago so it's a bit foggy as far as recollection goes. The story, I seem to recall, was something of a no-win scenario thematically with things going from bad to worse for just about every character in it (except perhaps, Claire Bloom, who called the shots.) It had that nightmarish quality about it, which also comes out strikingly in the music. The final track,"Frightened Willie," is the icing on the cake.

 
 Posted:   Apr 11, 2010 - 7:24 AM   
 By:   ToneRow   (Member)

After listening to Jerry Goldsmith's music for over 25 years, and owning probably over 100 of his soundtracks, I can say with confidence that the "The Illustrated Man" is the most satisfying Goldsmith listening experience for me, and that I have played this soundtrack album more times than any other Goldsmith disc (though I admit that "Morituri" and "Papillon" and "The Challenge" all have come quite close to acheiving this status with me at different times).
I've explained my reasons elsewhere in other threads, so I will not rehash nor waste time here.
Let others chime in with their praise for Goldsmith's post-modern masterpiece!

 
 Posted:   Apr 11, 2010 - 10:45 AM   
 By:   Jeff Bond   (Member)

This is one of many scores I taped right off our family's television speaker as a teenager, memorizing not only the music and dialogue but also some jarring TV editorial cuts (the main title is mangled because of some bits of nudity in overhead shots of one character swimming). Getting to hear the main title with the vocal in great sound (after enduring an erzats version for years that was minus the vocal--the MELODY--for the main title music) was one of the great thrills of working for FSM. To me Illustrated Man and Logan's Run encapsulate everything I love about Goldsmith's work.

 
 Posted:   Apr 11, 2010 - 11:22 AM   
 By:   workingwithknives   (Member)

Surprising the disc isn't sold out. A mere 3000 copies and it's still available. I'd rank The Illustrated Man as one of my favorite Goldsmith scores and in my opinion, one of his best. The 60's seem to be his most inspired period. And I would guess, in some ways the environment in that business was much more free and open minded. Seems to me composers were permitted to let their minds work in a way that's much more effective than much of the horseshit that rolls down from the Hollywood hills today.

The FSM disc is really a well produced package. It's obvious that you guys take much pride in what you do, and to me, that's reassuring in this day and age of so much half stepping and half assing.

The film is a classic. Rod Steiger plays the role of the psychotic drifter perfectly.

smile

 
 Posted:   Apr 11, 2010 - 11:45 AM   
 By:   Grecchus   (Member)

To me Illustrated Man and Logan's Run encapsulate everything I love about Goldsmith's work.

Yeah, I think I see your pov. One of my favourite pieces on Logan's Run is On The Circuit. It rolls on with more edginess (inherent everywhere in IM) than was conveyed by York and Agutter in the actual scene.

I would have to say that Goldsmith caught the wind during his efforts with Robert Wise. The Sand Pebbles is masterful in it's deep drama, the movie and the score being one of a kind.

 
 Posted:   Apr 11, 2010 - 8:31 PM   
 By:   Mr. Jack   (Member)

A magnificent score, although I wonder if the incessant "clicking" sound on the last track is supposed to be there (given how strange portions of the score are, I wouldn't be surprised), or if it's just a click track bleed-though that FSM couldn't remove...confused

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 12, 2010 - 3:21 AM   
 By:   zooba   (Member)

And that cool photo in the booklet of Jerry with the mod hair and goatee is icing on the cake!

 
 Posted:   Apr 12, 2010 - 3:57 AM   
 By:   Heath   (Member)

A magnificent score, although I wonder if the incessant "clicking" sound on the last track is supposed to be there (given how strange portions of the score are, I wouldn't be surprised), or if it's just a click track bleed-though that FSM couldn't remove...confused

You're listening to maracas. I would imagine that Mr Goldsmith would have been quite displeased with FSM had they managed to remove the instrument from the soundtrack. wink You've obviously never heard "Nervous Man In A Four Dollar Room". big grin

I too love Illustrated Man. It's one of Goldsmith's bona fide masterpieces, and perhaps echoes his concert music of the period because parts of it come quite close to the sound-world of Music For Orchestra.

I love the electronics too. "21st Century House" gets a lot of play here - those fantastic Moog fifths with their yawning filters really do it for me!

 
 Posted:   Apr 12, 2010 - 7:51 AM   
 By:   workingwithknives   (Member)

And that cool photo in the booklet of Jerry with the mod hair and goatee is icing on the cake!

1968 Los Angeles must have been a hell of a place. I didn't get there until 1979 and by that time many of the Topanga hippies had gone completely insane.

smile

 
 Posted:   Apr 12, 2010 - 11:27 AM   
 By:   DavidinBerkeley   (Member)

I spent a lot of time listening to this score back in the 80's when I wrote about it for my undergraduate thesis. Even after all those listenings I still enjoy it immensely.

One of the copyists at WB saw me looking at the music and told me to look for the "tin can tree" that is used in a couple of places (he said he had worked on the parts for the score). So I was thrilled to see a photo of the "tree" in the packaging!

 
 Posted:   Apr 13, 2010 - 12:29 PM   
 By:   Grecchus   (Member)

One of the copyists at WB saw me looking at the music and told me to look for the "tin can tree" that is used in a couple of places (he said he had worked on the parts for the score). So I was thrilled to see a photo of the "tree" in the packaging!

So, the 'tin can tree' must comprise one of the two objects standing between Mr Goldsmith and the unidentified man on the right of the photo (hello zooba of above quote), because both the other pictures in the booklet are stills from the movie itself. Wow! They literally are tin cans stacked in columns by the look of things. That picture squares off the booklet to IM rather nicely.

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 13, 2010 - 3:54 PM   
 By:   zooba   (Member)

One of the copyists at WB saw me looking at the music and told me to look for the "tin can tree" that is used in a couple of places (he said he had worked on the parts for the score). So I was thrilled to see a photo of the "tree" in the packaging!

So, the 'tin can tree' must comprise one of the two objects standing between Mr Goldsmith and the unidentified man on the right of the photo (hello zooba of above quote), because both the other pictures in the booklet are stills from the movie itself. Wow! They literally are tin cans stacked in columns by the look of things. That picture squares off the booklet to IM rather nicely.


I think the "unidentified man" in the photo might very well be Wiliam J. Creber who was the Art Director on PLANET OF THE APES. He looks familiar to me from the documentary footage on the POTA DVD Special Edition. Perhaps he was visiting a fellow art director friend on the set that day at FOX?

But Jerry does look cool. He didn't seem to keep that look for very long. Johnny Williams also had that sort of mod beatnik look for a while around the time of GOODBYE MR. CHIPS. They just needed bongos and berets and they could have licked the civilized world as musical poets and hipsters.

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 17, 2010 - 12:22 AM   
 By:   filmusicnow   (Member)

I spent a lot of time listening to this score back in the 80's when I wrote about it for my undergraduate thesis. Even after all those listenings I still enjoy it immensely.

One of the copyists at WB saw me looking at the music and told me to look for the "tin can tree" that is used in a couple of places (he said he had worked on the parts for the score). So I was thrilled to see a photo of the "tree" in the packaging!


It made a distinctive autoharplike effect when somebody ran their hand down it (just listen for the effect in the score).

 
 
 Posted:   Mar 24, 2012 - 11:04 AM   
 By:   Ken G   (Member)

Ordered the FSM CD from SAE yesterday and watched the movie tonight for the first time (available on youtube in pretty good quality).

Enjoyed the film and was obviously paying close attention to the music so looking forward to the CD arriving...

 
 Posted:   Mar 24, 2012 - 11:27 AM   
 By:   DeputyRiley   (Member)

I think this was my first FSM CD ever! It might've been my first 60's Goldsmith too. Love it. I always thought Giacchino's Lost music sounded like Illustrated Man, with sparse instrumentation and simple but effective melodies.

 
 Posted:   Mar 24, 2012 - 12:02 PM   
 By:   Francis   (Member)

As much as I dig Goldsmith, I can't stand "Illustrated Man"... the annoying female voice, the monotone flute, the thin orchestration, the tacky pre-Logan's Run synth effects, the Twilight Zone TV leftover material, the string/guitar plucking... I'd easily put it in his worst scores list, it goes nowhere just like the movie which aside from a couple of interesting ideas was ultimately a big waste of time. Hard to believe he composed it after Freud, Planet of the Apes, Satan Bug... easily superior scores to this one, again IMO.

I still don't know why it's there on the Goldsmith tribute concert dvd Varese put out (the sheet music for Mr. Baseball was missing?). Nothing against the FSM CD, just not a big fan of this score. Surprised to see this much praise for it really.

 
 
 Posted:   Mar 24, 2012 - 3:20 PM   
 By:   Graham S. Watt   (Member)

See, Francis? That's what's great about this place. You "dig" Goldsmith, you rate highly PLANET OF THE APES and other "challenging" (my inverted commas) works previous to THE ILLUSTRATED MAN, yet you can't stand THE ILLUSTRATED MAN!

So now I just have to say that I believe THE ILLUSTRATED MAN to be one of Jerry Goldsmith's very greatest scores, and the FSM release sublime (I still have the beermat version - it's under my glass right now). And I think the film itself is sorely underrated, or misunderstood or something. I haven't seen it for a while, but I felt there was something quite unique about it - I'm sure Mr Goldsmith's score helped in elevating my opinion of the film beyond what it may have really warranted - but isn't that what film scores are supposed to do? Either way, you don't like it, others do - I say potayto and you say potatto.

 
 Posted:   Mar 24, 2012 - 3:46 PM   
 By:   Steve Johnson   (Member)

See, Francis? That's what's great about this place. You "dig" Goldsmith, you rate highly PLANET OF THE APES and other "challenging" (my inverted commas) works previous to THE ILLUSTRATED MAN, yet you can't stand THE ILLUSTRATED MAN!

So now I just have to say that I believe THE ILLUSTRATED MAN to be one of Jerry Goldsmith's very greatest scores, and the FSM release sublime (I still have the beermat version - it's under my glass right now). And I think the film itself is sorely underrated, or misunderstood or something. I haven't seen it for a while, but I felt there was something quite unique about it - I'm sure Mr Goldsmith's score helped in elevating my opinion of the film beyond what it may have really warranted - but isn't that what film scores are supposed to do? Either way, you don't like it, others do - I say potayto and you say potatto.


And I think the film itself is sorely underrated, or misunderstood or something. I haven't seen it for a while, but I felt there was something quite unique about it - I'm sure Mr Goldsmith's score helped in elevating my opinion of the film beyond what it may have really warranted - but isn't that what film scores are supposed to do? Either way, you don't like it, others do - I say potayto and you say potatto.

Ray Bradbury agreed.

 
 Posted:   Mar 24, 2012 - 3:47 PM   
 By:   Francis   (Member)

See, Francis? That's what's great about this place. You "dig" Goldsmith, you rate highly PLANET OF THE APES and other "challenging" (my inverted commas) works previous to THE ILLUSTRATED MAN, yet you can't stand THE ILLUSTRATED MAN!


I guess it's to Goldsmith's credit that he can depart from previous styles and do a score like The Illustrated Man, I think that's why a lot of his 60's and early 70's scores are either hit or miss for me. Can't love 'em all, and it's subjective I know, but the illustrated man knows I tried. wink

 
 Posted:   Mar 24, 2012 - 3:51 PM   
 By:   Grecchus   (Member)

It's a very subtle work. As I remember them, the liner notes stated JG had about a year to mull over his input. In other words, it wasn't cranked out as fast as many he worked on. I really do think it shows. The film itself I haven't seen in yonks - it had something of a baroque feel to it. At the very least it comes off as atypical in style and execution.

There are some really great moments, such as the shock horror of The House Has Gone.

 
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