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Quartet has announced several new soundtrack CDs -- a brand-new recording of Bernard Herrmann's score for the thriller THE BRIDE WORE BLACK, which Francois Truffaut directed from the Cornel Woolrich novel, featuring Fernando Velazquez conducting the Basque National Orchestra; an expanded, two-disc edition of Nino Rota's classic score for Federico Fellini's 8 1/2; a 60th anniversary two-disc edition of Jerome Moross' classic, Oscar-nominated score for the Western epic THE BIG COUNTRY, feauring the full score tracks as well as (in mono and processed "stereo") the original LP tracks; a two-disc, 35th anniversary edition of Arthur B. Rubinstein's score for the hit WARGAMES, featuring both a remastered version of the original score tracks and the tracks from the original soundtrack LP (which featured both score and dialogue excerpts); the first release of the full Bernardo Bonezzi score for Pedro Almodovar's comedy classic WOMEN ON THE VERGE OF A NERVOUS BREAKDOWN; a remastered anniversary edition of Ennio Morricone's beloved score for CINEMA PARADISO; and EL HOMBRE Y LA TIERRA, a four-disc set of Anton Garcia Abril's music for the documentary TV series that ran from 1974 to 1981.

Kritzerland has announced two new CDs -- the music from the 1949 Western THE CISCO KID IN THE GAY AMIGO, scored by B-movie veteran Albert Glasser (The Amazing Colossal Man), plus cues from additional Glasser scores; and a remastered and resequenced release of Alfred Newman's score for the religious drama A MAN CALLED PETER


The Cry - Lorne Balfe - Lakeshore
Dead Men
 - Gerrit Wunder - Kronos
 - Morton Gould - Notefornote
La Cage Aux Folles 1, 2 & 3
 - Ennio Morricone - Music Box
The Moon in the Gutter
 - Gabriel Yared - Music Box
On the Basis of Sex - Mychael Danna - Sony
Widows - Hans Zimmer - Milan


Backtrace - Tim Jones
Beyond White Space - Nima Fakhrara, Navid Hejazi
Bird Box - Trent Reznor, Atticus Ross
Capernaum - Khaled Manzour - Score CD due Feb. 1 on Decca
The House That Jack Built - Victor Reyes
If Beale Street Could Talk - Nicholas Britell
Maine - Music Supervisor: Dan Wilcox
Mortal Engines - Tom Holkenborg - Score CD due Dec. 21 on Backlot
The Mule - Arturo Sandoval
Sicilian Ghost Story - Anton Spielman
Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse - Daniel Pemberton - Score CD due Dec. 21 on Sony (import)
That Way Madness Lies - Michael Bacon
Tyrel - Music Supervisor: Chris Swanson


December 21
Au Bout Des Doigts - Harry Allouche - Milan (import)
The Big Country
- Jerome Moross - Quartet
The Bride Wore Black [re-recording]
- Bernard Herrmann - Quartet
Cinema Paradiso
- Ennio Morricone - Quartet
8 1/2
- Nino Rota - Quartet
El Hombre y la Tierra
- Anton Garcia Abril - Quartet
Holmes & Watson - Mark Mothersbaugh - Sony (import)
Mia and the White Lion - Armand Amar - Universal (import)
Mortal Engines - Tom Holkenborg - Backlot
Remi Sans Famille - Romaric Laurence - Milan (import)
Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse - Daniel Pemberton - Sony (import)
- Arthur B. Rubinstein - Quartet
Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown
- Bernardo Bonezzi - Quartet
January 4
Bernie the Dolphin - Joshua Mosley - Lakeshore
The Box of Delights - Roger Limb - Silva (import)
The Sisters Brothers - Alexandre Desplat - Lakeshore (U.S. release)
January 18
The West Wing [one-disc] - W.G. Snuffy Walden - Varese Sarabande
January 25
Serenity - Benjamin Wallfisch - Milan
February 1
Capernaum - Khaled Manzour - Decca (import)
February 8
We the Animals - Nick Zammuto - Temporary Residence
Date Unknown
The Cisco Kid in The Gay Amigo
- Albert Glasser - Kritzerland
Clash of Futures
 - Laurent Eyquem - Quartet
Doctor Who: Series 11
- Segun Akinola - Silva
Delitto Quasi Perfetto
 - Carlo Rustichelli - Digitmovies
Devil's Tree: Rooted Evil
 - Chad Cannon - Quartet
Don Camillo
 - Pino Donaggio - Digitmovies
 - Elia Cmiral - Quartet
Fumo di Londra
 - Piero Piccioni - Beat
I Familiari Delle Vittime Non Saranno Avvertiti
 - Francesco De Masi - Beat
Mad Macbeth
 - Susan Dibona, Salvatore Sangiovanni - Kronos
A Man Called Peter
- Alfred Newman - Kritzerland
Non Lasciamoci Piu
 - Fabio Frizzi - Kronos
Oma Maa
 - Pessi Levando - Kronos
Once Upon a Time in the West
 - Ennio Morricone - Beat
Valley of Shadows
 - Zbigniew Preisner - Caldera


December 14 - John Du Prez born (1946)
December 14 - John Lurie born (1952)
December 14 - Alfred Newman begins recording his score for Hell and High Water (1953)
December 14 - Fred Karlin begins recording his score for Ravagers (1978)
December 14 - Ron Jones records his score for the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode "The Defector" (1989)
December 14 - Jay Chattaway records his score for the Star Trek: Voyager episode “Shattered” (2000)
December 15 - Gone With the Wind has its world premiere in Atlanta (1939)
December 15 - The Man with the Golden Arm opens in New York (1955)
December 15 - Alan Ari Lazar born (1967)
December 15 - Ennio Morricone begins recording his score for Days of Heaven (1977)
December 16 - Lud Gluskin born (1898)
December 16 - Noel Coward born (1889)
December 16 - Camille Saint-Saens died (1921)
December 16 - Marco Frisina born (1954)
December 16 - Adam Gorgoni born (1963)
December 16 - Recording sessions begin for Cyril Mockridge’s score for Donovan’s Reef (1963)
December 16 - Jerry Goldsmith begins recording his score for In Harm's Way (1964)
December 16 - Robert Prince records his score for The New Adventures of Wonder Woman episode “The Deadly Toys” (1977)
December 16 - Richard Band records his score for Terrorvision (1985)
December 16 - Jerry Goldsmith begins recording his unused Timeline score (2002)
December 16 - Paul Baillargeon records his score for the Star Trek: Enterprise episode “Chosen Realm” (2003)
December 16 - Freddie Perren died (2004)
December 17 - Leo Erdody born (1888)
December 17 - Craig Safan born (1948)
December 17 - Winfried Zillig died (1963)
December 17 - Lalo Schifrin begins recording his score for Rhino! (1963)
December 17 - Don Ellis died (1978)
December 17 - John Debney records his score for the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode “The Pegasus” (1993)
December 18 - Joel Hirschhorn born (1937)
December 18 - Jean Musy born (1947)
December 18 - Maurice Jarre begins recording his score for The Last Flight of Noah’s Ark (1979)
December 18 - Out of Africa opens in New York and Los Angeles (1985)
December 18 - Ron Jones records his score for the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode "Datalore" (1987)
December 19 - Paul Dessau born (1894)
December 19 - Robert B. Sherman born (1925)
December 19 - Galt MacDermot born (1928)
December 19 - Herbert Stothart begins recording his score for Northwest Passage (1939)
December 19 - The Thief of Bagdad premieres in London (1940)
December 19 - Recording sessions begin for Frederick Hollander’s score for The Bride Wore Boots (1946)
December 19 - Walter Murphy born (1952)
December 19 - Fred Karlin begins recording his score to The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman (1973)
December 19 - Elmer Bernstein begins recording his score for Going Ape (1980)
December 19 - Michel Magne died (1984)
December 19 - Roger Webb died (2002)
December 20 - Aaron Copland begins recording his score to The Heiress (1948)
December 20 - Cyril Mockridge records his score for the Lost in Space episode "The Questing Beast" (1966)
December 20 - Alex North begins recording his score to The Devil's Brigade (1967)
December 20 - Jerry Goldsmith begins recording his score for The Red Pony (1972)
December 20 - Ned Washington died (1976)
December 20 - Jerry Goldsmith records his score for the Amazing Stories episode "Boo!" (1985)
December 20 - Richard Hazard died (2000)
December 20 - David Bell records his score for the Enterprise episode “Dawn” (2002)
December 20 - Arlon Ober died (2004)


AMERICAN PASTORAL - Alexandre Desplat
"For the Scottish McGregor to play an American Jew, even one whose appearance did not fit the stereotype/norm, would be challenge enough on its own. That he is also making his directorial feature debut with this material is, well, curious. The opening scenes are handled with a certain conventional competence. David Straithairn, as Zuckerman, shows up at a high school reunion and runs into Jerry Levov, the Swede’s younger brother. He’s played by Rupert Evans, and in this scene he wears terribly unconvincing old-age makeup. Flashbacks to The Swede’s high-school glory follow. Then follows the introduction of McGregor’s young adult Swede, presenting his beauty-queen sweetheart Dawn (Connelly) to cantankerous father Lou (Reigert). So far, so adequate. Things begin to head south around the point The Swede and Dawn settle into the fictional town of Old Rimrock. “We can live where we want,” The Swede proclaims. 'This is America.' Alexander Desplat’s score at this point starts sounding like phoned-in Aaron Copeland [sic]."
Glenn Kenny,

"Adorable silhouettes bleed into red and black monsters, and the nice sounds of nature are replaced by a queasy synth score that sounds like it was borrowed from 'The Neon Demon.' Within minutes, we’re introduced to a young mouse named Dinky (whose foster parents shame her with a Baby Jesus figurine that cries blood), a pre-teen rabbit who’s haunted by demonic voices, and a fascistic pair of police dogs who shoot anyone who steps out of line. By the time we’re formally introduced to the title character -- a moon-headed chick who wears a tattered business suit and silently mourns his murdered father -- it barely even registers that he’s a heroin addict."
David Ehrlich, IndieWire

BRAVEN - Justin Small, Ohad Benchetrit
"The lensing by Brian Andrew Mendoza is exceptional, and the score by Justin Small and Ohad Benchetrit enhances moods without ever overstating the obvious. To put it simply and gratefully: 'Braven' is the sort of unpretentious yet thoroughly professional popcorn entertainment that brings out the best in everybody involved."
Joe Leydon, Variety
DESIERTO - Woodkid [Yoann Lemoine]

"But the film quickly devolves into a third-rate 'The Most Dangerous Game.' Any perceptive dialogue or contemporary socio-political subtext is pummeled by Cuarón’s preference for empty genre thrills, as each Mexican is graphically, almost gleefully, picked off one. (A blaring score by Woodkid complements the violence; instead of underlining or emphasizing the horror, the music’s fast drums and pulsating rhythms sound like they’ve been culled from a Ford pickup commercial.) By the end of the film’s first third, which is capped by Sam’s slaughter of a dozen Mexicans and a subsequent one-liner, 'Welcome to the land of the free,' Cuarón’s maximal direction could almost be appreciated as bizarro camp because of the hyper-stoic visage it maintains throughout."
Clayton Dillard, Slant Magazine
"As simple and minimalist a survival thriller as 'Gravity' (which Cuaron scripted with his father, Alfonso), 'Desierto' operates on a level that is swift, primal and unrelenting. Sam doesn’t grant his prey much of a respite, and neither does Cuaron as he sends his camera hurtling after them -- up steep slopes and down treacherous paths that require them to maintain their balance as well as their agility. Moment by moment, the director’s mastery of his terrain is as nimble as his sense of composition; sometimes the camera follows right alongside Moises and the others as they run, and sometimes it pulls back to dwarf them against their surroundings. (Some of the picture’s most pulse-quickening moments occur in deep-focus long shots, positioning Moises and friends in the foreground while Sam and Tracker suddenly, ominously pop into view behind them.) And the picture’s visceral kick is enhanced by its soundscape, vividly registering the party’s heavy panting and footfalls, the sickening thud of a body’s landing, and the hard pop of gunfire, though occasionally drowned out by a thunderously percussive score (by the French musician Yoann Lemoine, aka Woodkid)."
Justin Chang, Variety

"The old 'Most Dangerous Game'/'The Naked Prey' man-stalking format is uncomfortably imposed on a Mexican immigrant narrative in 'Desierto,' a sharply made but simplistic second feature from writer-director Jonas Cuaron. Although the flow of Mexicans into the United States has been a topical matter for decades, the fact that the entire subject of migrants worldwide has this year become such a hot-button issue could well work to this film’s advantage. But the spectacle of a Confederate flag-sporting redneck hunting down Mexicans stranded in the desert with a ferocious dog and a high-powered rifle doesn’t really add anything helpful to the big conversation about immigration. The film’s obvious topicality will put it in the spotlight, but the idea of a nut-job American loner using desperate border-crossers for target practice doesn’t represent the real issues in play in any meaningful or accurate manner. Equal parts action melodrama, social critique and art project (especially in regards to the heavy and pretentious musical score), this could get praised for the wrong reasons and become some sort of event, but wide acceptance is unlikely. If the story is meant to represent the immigration debate in microcosm, it’s woefully reductive. If it’s meant to be first and foremost an action thriller, it does have a few nice moves to offer, especially in the climactic mano-a-mano between the two men on large rock formations that involves risky maneuvers, precarious positions and long drops. But even this well-staged denouement is undercut by a heavily intrusive synth score by the French artist Woodkid. Cinematographer Damian Garcia makes fine use of the superbly forbidding locations (most of the film was shot in Baja California, near La Paz)."
Todd McCarthy, The Hollywood Reporter
"Playing the off-kilter premise straight, Warth’s camera frames Audrey and Lillian’s boardroom-as-black-box performances like classically staged two-handers; he toes the line between mocking their theatrics (sample line: 'Products have come to me damaged, Catherine. How do you explain such slipshod service?') and saluting the duo as outsiders caught in the folie à deux of creative co-dependence. A partnership based on shared dreams of artistic success can turn into fantasy world; Lillian and Audrey are way past that point by the time we meet them. 'Dim The Fluorescents'' core story is familiar: a friendship undermined by a shot at success. But Warth, who co-wrote the screenplay with Miles Barstead (also responsible for the jazzy score), entangles it in ambitions, intentionally mannered performances, visual idiosyncrasies, and artificialities. The film is surprisingly long (over 2 hours) and eclectic, juggling dolly shots, split screens, dramatically timed pans and tilts, direct-to-camera addresses, and a whole lot of Steadicam. (Most of the climactic performance of 'Leadership In Times Of Crisis And Change' is directed in an elaborate, uninterrupted Steadicam shot that runs about 10 minutes.)"
Ignatiy Vishnevetsky, The Onion AV Club
FOREVER MY GIRL - Brett Boyett
"Wolf sprinkles in scenes of Liam singing ('Don’t water down my whiskey'), which she and the editor, Priscilla Nedd-Friendly, afford pleasingly generous, stretched-out length. But at other moments, Wolf relies too much on the country-heavy soundtrack to stir the feelings her scenes alone cannot. It’s impossible to take Roe (who’s charming enough in the part) seriously when a basic shot of him waking up in his childhood bed is partnered with a sorrowful musical accompaniment that makes it sound as if he’s just witnessed Armageddon. When Liam struts about the town in sulking-loner mode or slouches solitarily on a stoop with something to drink, Roe -- in his formfitting T-shirts and ruffled-up jeans -- can come off less as a sincerely saddened heartthrob than a laid-off J.Crew model. But he does have vivid gestures, particularly early: The seamless, second-nature way he stumbles into his manager’s hotel room after a long night and plops himself lazily on the couch -- demanding, 'I need an espresso' -- is a crisper illustration of personality than anything Liam does throughout the rest of the movie."
Danny King, The Village Voice
"Travis Tritt, Little Big Town, Josh Turner and, briefly, Miranda Lambert are among the country stars who can be heard on the soundtrack. And to give him fair credit, Roe is credible as a country singer when he performs some of the original tunes written or co-written by veteran tunesmith Brett Boyett. He may not be ready for the Grand Ole Opry, but he probably wouldn’t get booed off the stage on open mic night at Nashville’s Bluebird Café."
Joe Leydon, Variety


Screenings of older films, at the following L.A. movie theaters: AMPASAmerican Cinematheque: AeroAmerican Cinematheque: EgyptianArclightArena CineloungeLACMALaemmleNew Beverly [reopening in December!], Nuart and UCLA.

December 14
EDWARD SCISSORHANDS (Danny Elfman) [Nuart]
FASTER, PUSSYCAT! KILL! KILL! (Paul Sawtell, Bert Shefter), MOTORPSYCHO! (Paul Sawtell, Bert Shefter) [New Beverly]
SPIRITED AWAY (Joe Hisaishi) [Cinematheque: Aero]

December 15
CHRISTMAS EVIL (Don Christensen, Joel Harris, Julia Heyward)  [New Beverly]
FASTER, PUSSYCAT! KILL! KILL! (Paul Sawtell, Bert Shefter), MOTORPSYCHO! (Paul Sawtell, Bert Shefter) [New Beverly]
HOWL'S MOVING CASTLE (Joe Hisaishi), KIKI'S DELIVERY SERVICE (Joe Hisaishi) [Cinematheque: Aero]
THE MUPPET CHRISTMAS CAROL (Paul Williams, Miles Goodman) [New Beverly]
TO LIVE AND DIE IN L.A. (Wang Chung), CUTTER'S WAY (Jack Nitzsche) [Cinematheque: Egyptian]

December 16
A CHRISTMAS STORY (Carl Zittrer, Paul Zaza) [UCLA]
DETOUR (Leo Erdody) [Cinematheque: Egyptian]
MIRACLE ON 34TH STREET (Cyril Mockridge), SANTA CLAUS (Henry Mancini) [New Beverly]
THE MUPPET CHRISTMAS CAROL (Paul Williams, Miles Goodman) [New Beverly]
MY NEIGHBOR TOTORO (Joe Hisaishi) [Cinematheque: Aero]

December 17
DIE HARD (Michael Kamen) [Arclight Hollywood]
DIE HARD (Michael Kamen) [Arclight Santa Monica]
MIRACLE ON 34TH STREET (Cyril Mockridge), SANTA CLAUS (Henry Mancini) [New Beverly]

December 18
BLACK CHRISTMAS (Carl Zittrer), SILENT NIGHT, DEADLY NIGHT (Perry Botkin) [New Beverly]
A CHRISTMAS STORY (Carl Zittrer, Paul Zaza) [Arclight Sherman Oaks]
DON'T LOOK NOW (Pino Donaggio) [Laemmle Ahyra Fine Arts]
IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE (Dimitri Tiomkin) [Arclight Culver City]

December 19
DIAL CODE: SANTA CLAUS (Jean-Felix Lalanne), BLOOD BEAT (Chris Zaphiratos, Fabrice A. Zaphiratos)[Cinematheque: Egyptian]
NATIONAL LAMPOON'S CHRISTMAS VACATION (Angelo Badalamenti), SCROOGED (Danny Elfman) [New Beverly]

December 20
BATMAN RETURNS (Danny Elfman), GREMLINS (Jerry Goldsmith) [Cinematheque: Egyptian]
THE LION IN WINTER (John Barry) [Cinematheque: Aero]
NATIONAL LAMPOON'S CHRISTMAS VACATION (Angelo Badalamenti), SCROOGED (Danny Elfman) [New Beverly]

December 21
DIE HARD (Michael Kamen) [Nuart]
DIE HARD (Michael Kamen), TRAIL OF ROBIN HOOD (Nathan Scott) [Cinematheque: Egyptian]
ELF (John Debney) [Cinematheque: Aero]
IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE (Dimitri Tiomkin), A CHRISTMAS STORY (Carl Zittrer, Paul Zaza) [New Beverly]

December 22
IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE (Dimitri Tiomkin) [Cinematheque: Egyptian]
IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE (Dimitri Tiomkin), A CHRISTMAS STORY (Carl Zittrer, Paul Zaza) [New Beverly]
JINGLE ALL THE WAY (David Newman) [New Beverly]
MEET ME IN ST. LOUIS (Ralph Blaine, Hugh Martin, George Stoll) [Cinematheque: Aero]
SILENT NIGHT, DEADLY NIGHT PART 2 (Michael Armstrong) [New Beverly]
VIRTUAL ASSASSIN (George Blondheim), HOLOGRAM MAN (John Gonzalez) [Cinematheque: Egyptian]

December 23
DIE HARD (Michael Kamen), THE SILENT PARTNER (Oscar Peterson, Ken Wannberg) [New Beverly]
THE DORM THAT DRIPPED BLOOD (Christopher Young), THE ORACLE (Michael Litovsky, Walter E. Sear) [Cinematheque: Egyptian]
IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE (Dimitri Tiomkin) [Cinematheque: Aero]
JINGLE ALL THE WAY (David Newman) [New Beverly]


Well, the main thing I've heard lately is Intrada's awesome CD of Goldsmith's The Reincarnation of Peter Proud, which shall spin endlessly in my crappy old Discman until I feel as if I know every note.

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is expected to announce the shortlists for nominations in several of their Oscar categories, including, for the first time since 1979, Original Score and Original Song. Here are my predictions for a few of those shortlists:


The Ballad of Buster Scruggs
Black Panther
First Man
Free Solo
If Beale Street Could Talk
Incredibles 2
Isle of Dogs
Mary Poppins Returns
Mary Queen of Scots
On the Basis of Sex
A Quiet Place
Red Sparrow
The Sisters Brothers


All the Stars – Black Panther
Always Remember Us This Way – A Star Is Born
The Big Unknown – Widows
Girl in the Movies – Dumplin’
Gravity – Free Solo
Here Comes the Change – On the Basis of Sex
I’ll Fight – RBG
I’ll Never Love Again – A Star Is Born 
A Place Called Slaughter Race – Ralph Breaks the Internet
The Place Where Lost Things Go – Mary Poppins Returns
Requiem for a Private War – A Private War
Revelation – Boy Erased
Shallow – A Star Is Born
Trip a Little Light Fantastic – Mary Poppins Returns
Wrapped Up – Vox Lux

[the Academy's ten-film shortlist in this category is whittled down from a previously announced twenty-film version]

Ant-Man and the Wasp
Avengers: Infinity War
Black Panther
Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald
First Man
Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom
Mary Poppins Returns
Ready Player One
Solo: A Star Wars Story
Welcome to Marwen


The Favourite
Mary Queen of Scots
Stan & Ollie
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A 35th anniversary deluxe release of the Wargames score? Hell, ya!

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