The latest CD from Intrada, available for only a limited time, is a remastered edition of their re-recording of Miklos Rozsa's triumphant score for the 1952 film version of IVANHOE, with Bruce Broughton conducting the Sinfonia of London.
In additional Miklos Rozsa news, Tadlow's two-disc re-recording of the complete KING OF KINGS, with Nic Raine conducting the City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra & Chorus, is now available for pre-order.
La-La Land has announced six new soundtrack releases in their annual end-of-year "Black Friday" batch:
A fourth volume of their series of Mark Snow's music for the long-running sci-fi classic THE X-FILES, a four-disc set including episodic cues from all nine seasons.
The latest CD from their recent partnership with Universal is the first commercial release of the score for the 1990 cult classic monster movie TREMORS, a two-disc set featuring Ernest Troost's original score on Disc One and the additional music composed for the film by Robert Folk on Disc Two (cues from both scores had previously been released on promotional CDs).
Bear McCreary's score for the just released dark horror comedy FREAKY starring Kathryn Newton and Vince Vaughn, which reteamed the composer with Christopher Landon, director of the Happy Death Day films.
The newest in their series of expanded releases of Bill Conti's music for the original Karate Kid films is his score for 1989's THE KARATE KID PART III, with a generous amount of additional cues.
Finally, two separate volumes of their brand new series, GOLDSMITH AT 20TH, featuring scores Jerry Goldsmith composed and recorded during his years at 20th Century Fox. VOL. 1 is a two-disc set featuring two war scores from the 1960s, the WWII escape adventure VON RYAN'S EXPRESS and his classic score for the WWI aviation drama THE BLUE MAX. VOL. 2 pairs two very different scores from the mid-1960s -- the dark police mystery THE DETECTIVE, from the novel by Roderick Thorp (the book's sequel, Nothing Lasts Forever, was the basis for Die Hard), and the picaresque comedy THE FLIM-FLAM MAN (featuring one previously unreleased cue).
This month Turner Classic Movies will be showing 25 films scored by the master, Bernard Herrmann, as part of a month-long tribute to the composer.
CDS AVAILABLE THIS WEEK
Hillbilly Elegy - Hans Zimmer, David Fleming - Sony
Ivanhoe [remastered re-recording] - Miklos Rozsa - Intrada
The Karate Kid Part III - Bill Conti - La-La Land
Marple - Dominik Scherrer - Quartet
Morricone Segreto - Ennio Morricone - Decca
Nel Cinema e Nella Classica - Pino Donaggio - Quartet
Nieva en Benidorm - Alfonso Vilallonga - Quartet
Tremors - Ernest Troost, Robert Folk - La-La Land
IN THEATERS TODAY
This week sees the release (where theaters are open) of Nomadland, a drama starring Frances McDormand (with a score by Ludovico Einaudi) which is considered to be a major Oscar contender.
Becoming - Kamasi Washington - Young Turks
Freaky - Bear McCreary - La-La Land
The Glorias - Elliot Goldenthal - Zarathustra
Goldsmith at 20th Vol. 1: Von Ryan's Express/The Blue Max - Jerry Goldsmith - La-La Land
Goldsmith at 20th Vol. 2: The Detective/The Flim-Flam Man - Jerry Goldsmith - La-La Land
Jay Sebring...Cutting to the Truth - Jeff Beal - Noteforenote
La ragazza di Trieste - Riz Ortolani - Beat
Spasmo - Ennio Morricone - Beat
The X-Files Vol. 4 - Mark Snow - La-La Land
News of the World - James Newton Howard - Backlot
Nine Days - Antonio Pinto - Warner (import)
Film Music 1976-2020 - Brian Eno - Astralwerks
No Time to Die - Hans Zimmer - Decca
Civilta Del Mediterraneo - Bruno Nicolai - Kronos
Gaza Mon Amour - Andre Matthias - Kronos
The Gerald Fried Collection Vol. 1 - Gerald Fried - Dragon's Domain
The Golden Age of Science Fiction Vol. 1 - Marlin Skiles, Leith Stevens - Dragon's Domain
John Williams in Vienna [CD/BluRay] - John Williams - Deutsche Grammophon
King of Kings [re-recording] - Miklos Rozsa - Tadlow
Lolita My Love [stage] - John Barry - Kritzerland
L'Uomo Europo - Francesco DeMasi - Kronos
Patrick - Brian May - Dragon's Domain
The Shepherd - Arthur Valentin Grosz - Kronos
T-Rex: Back to the Cretaceous - William Ross - Dragon's Domain
Total Recall [re-release] - Jerry Goldsmith - Quartet
The Twentieth Century - George Antheil, Paul Creston, Gail Kubik, Darius Milhaud, Harold Shapero - Kritzerland
Un Sceriffo Extraterrestre...Poco Extra e Molto Terrestre - Guido & Maurizio DeAngelis - Digitmovies
Viking Women and the Sea Serpent - Albert Glasser - Kronos
THIS WEEK IN FILM MUSIC HISTORY
December 4 - Alex North born (1910)
December 4 - Richard Robbins born (1940)
December 4 - Rob Walsh born (1947)
December 4 - Leonard Rosenman records his score for the Alfred Hitchcock Hour episode “One of the Family” (1964)
December 4 - Jason Staczek born (1965)
December 4 - Benjamin Britten died (1976)
December 4 - On Golden Pond opens in New York and Los Angeles (1981)
December 4 - Harry Sukman died (1984)
December 4 - Jay Chattaway begins recording his score for the two-part Star Trek: The Next Generation episode “Chain of Command” (1992)
December 4 - Frank Zappa died (1993)
December 4 - Tito Arevalo died (2000)
December 5 - Karl-Ernst Sasse born (1923)
December 5 - Johnny Pate born (1923)
December 5 - John Altman born (1949)
December 5 - Richard Gibbs born (1955)
December 5 - Osvaldo Golijov born (1960)
December 5 - Cliff Eidelman born (1964)
December 5 - Jerry Goldsmith records his score for the Room 222 pilot (1968)
December 5 - Jerry Goldsmith begins recording his score to Coma (1977)
December 5 - Ron Jones records his score for the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode "The Outrageous Okona" (1988)
December 5 - Masaru Sato died (1999)
December 5 - Dave Brubeck died (2012)
December 5 - Manuel De Sica died (2014)
December 6 - Mort Glickman born (1898)
December 6 - Lyn Murray born (1909)
December 6 - Dave Brubeck born (1920)
December 6 - Piero Piccioni born (1921)
December 6 - Maury Laws born (1923)
December 6 - Roberto Pregadio born (1928)
December 6 - Willie Hutch born (1944)
December 6 - Joe Hisaishi born (1950)
December 6 - Recording sessions begin for Sol Kaplan’s score for Destination Gobi (1952)
December 6 - Morgan Lewis died (1968)
December 6 - Lalo Schifrin begins recording the original soundtrack LP to Bullitt (1968)
December 6 - Patrick Williams records his score for The Streets of San Francisco episode “Bitter Wine” (1972)
December 6 - Hans Zimmer begins recording his score for Broken Arrow (1995)
December 6 - Richard Markowitz died (1994)
December 7 - Ernst Toch born (1887)
December 7 - Tom Waits born (1949)
December 7 - Victor Young begins recording his score for Appointment with Danger (1949)
December 7 - On Her Majesty's Secret Service opens in Los Angeles (1969)
December 7 - Jerry Goldsmith records his score for The Homecoming: A Christmas Story (1971)
December 7 - Georges Delerue begins recording his score for Les Visiteurs (1979)
December 7 - Star Trek -- The Motion Picture is released in theaters (1979)
December 7 - Basil Poledouris begins recording his score for White Fang (1990)
December 7 - John Addison died (1998)
December 7 - Paul Baillargeon records his score for the Star Trek: Voyager episode “Latent Image” (1998)
December 8 - Leo Shuken born (1906)
December 8 - Moisey Vainberg born (1919)
December 8 - John Rubinstein born (1946)
December 8 - Bruce Kimmel born (1947)
December 8 - Miklos Rozsa begins recording his score to The World, the Flesh and the Devil (1958)
December 8 - Russell Garcia begins recording his score for The Time Machine (1959)
December 8 - Dominic Frontiere records his score for The Invaders episode “The Mutation” (1966)
December 8 - Junkie XL born as Tom Holkenberg (1967)
December 8 - Leonard Rosenman begins recording his score for Beneath the Planet of the Apes (1969)
December 8 - Antonio Carlos Jobim died (1994)
December 8 - Richard Thompson begins recording his score for Grizzly Man (2004)
December 8 - Edward Williams died (2013)
December 9 - Von Dexter born (1912)
December 9 - Chris Wilson born (1958)
December 9 - Sune Waldimir died (1967)
December 9 - Geoff Barrow born (1971)
December 9 - William Goldstein records his score for the Twilight Zone episode “Her Pilgrim Soul” (1985)
December 9 - Alessandro Cicognini died (1995)
December 10 - Morton Gould born (1913)
December 10 - Alexander Courage born (1919)
December 10 - Chad Stuart born (1941)
December 10 - Milan Svoboda born (1951)
December 10 - Jack Hues born (1954)
December 10 - Jerry Goldsmith begins recording his score for Shock Treatment (1963)
December 10 - Leigh Harline died (1969)
December 10 - Recording sessions begin for Claude Bolling’s score for The Awakening (1979)
December 10 - Roy Webb died (1982)
December 10 - Gershon Kingsley died (2019)
DID THEY MENTION THE MUSIC?
ANIMAL CRACKERS - Bear McCreary
"Rounding out the tech credits is a busy score by Bear McCreary ('Rebel in the Rye)' that’s mixed in with tracks by Queen, Howard Jones and Huey Lewis and the News. For an independent feature made between the U.S. and Spain (with financing from China), 'Animal Crackers' benefits from the slick packaging of a Hollywood movie. Too bad there’s not much going on inside the box."
Jordan Mintzer, The Hollywood Reporter
ARCHIVE - Steven Price
"Set in 2038, 'Archive' convincingly jumbles eras of futurism, as somewhat quaint old-school robotics give way to more uncannily sinuous forms. Cinematographer Laurie Rose, a regular Ben Wheatley collaborator, paints it all in serene, frozen silvers, shifting to garish electric neons as the outside world intrudes on George’s secluded techno-shrine. 'Gravity' composer Steven Price’s score, meanwhile, blends sparse strings and glassy synths, reflecting the marriage of human touch and metallic industrial sheen in George’s mad-scientist meddlings."
Guy Lodge, Variety
THE BEACH HOUSE - Roly Porter
"Despite a few gore and mutation effects, it’s a film more unsettling than frightening, one that maybe overplays its not-so-profound air of mystery with a fadeout that falls rather flat. Still, 'The Beach House' remains compelling if never quite riveting thanks to its effectively queasy mood, generally strong performances, and a resourceful assembly in which Roly Porter’s soundscape-type score sets an appropriate tone of science-friction."
Dennis Harvey, Variety
FATAL AFFAIR - Matthew Janszen
"In a swank house, a man and a woman engage in amorous acrobatics before a large, glowing fireplace. The blaze seems a little ominous. So does the woman’s trip to the kitchen. And, as if to heighten the tension more, should any character coyly say 'we’re not done yet' while the movie’s score promises otherwise? Probably not. But then 'Fatal Affair' wastes little time delivering on its breathless title. And, that is so not a spoiler, just the start of an intermittently effective, consistently derivative thriller starring Nia Long and Omar Epps, now streaming on Netflix."
Lisa Kennedy, Variety
"Director Sullivan does a smooth enough job tracking the action and building a modicum of suspense with help from Eitan Almagor's snaking camera and Matthew Janszen's sinister score, though there are just too few surprises to make this anything more than polished Lifetime fodder."
David Rooney, The Hollywood Reporter
FATHER SOLDIER SON - Nathan Halpern
"Credit editor Amy Foote, too, for helping craft the documentary’s judgment-free zone. The film’s structure and pacing prioritize connection and understanding over ideological differences. Nathan Halpern’s understated score and co-director-cinematographer Davis’s visual appreciation of the harsh then bountiful landscape of upstate New York and rural Wisconsin provide similar opportunities to ponder the big questions the Eisches face."
Lisa Kennedy, Variety
FISHERMAN’S FRIENDS - Rupert Christie
"The soundtrack features some lively musical performances by the Fisherman’s Friends, but the filmmakers don’t quite trust that old-timey music, which is surprising given that the group scored a 2010 gold album in Britain. So the shanties are supplemented by Rupert Christie’s tinkly score and British pop-punk and American disco tunes, including the Water Boys’s 'Fisherman’s Blues' and Hues Corporation’s 'Rock the Boat.' If those song cues are a little obvious, at least the musical interludes are largely free of dialogue, which is the film’s weakest element. The script doesn’t contain many lines that ring true, and a few clang wildly off-key. Yet most of these misfires are rescued by the cast, whose naturalness passes for small-town camaraderie. In a film genre that relies heavily on coziness, the actors seem entirely at home."
Mark Jenkins, Slant Magazine
GHOSTS OF WAR - Michael Suby
"Though Thwaites’ nominal lead seems too boyish to command his fellow grunts, the cast is generally strong. Michael Suby’s original orchestral score strikes a note a bit conventional for a war movie that so quickly strays from robust, old-school combat adventure terrain."
Dennis Harvey, Variety
GUEST ARTIST - Ben Daniels
"A title card at the beginning of the movie says that it's 'based on an incident which became a play which became this film.' Whatever its real-life inspiration, there's no question that it's a family affair. Busfield's wife, Melissa Gilbert, serves as a producer, and Daniels' sons participated in the production -- Lucas as a camera operator and Ben, the writer-star's frequent musical collaborator, as composer of a score that's sometimes too plucky, sometimes perfectly understated. It's the handmade, from-the-heart quality of this flawed feature that makes it noteworthy; the drama is less memorable than the fact that two accomplished industry vets stepped away from Hollywood and into their own backyard."
Sheri Linden, The Hollywood Reporter
MOST WANTED - Eloi Painchaud
"Along with Pilon’s striking performance, the film’s sturdy, subdued craftsmanship keeps it from movie-of-the-week territory, even as Roby’s script ticks overly familiar boxes. Eloi Painchaud’s score contributes subtle menace, while Yvann Thibaudeau’s editing zips and darts and cross-cuts in ways that enliven passages of procedural cliché. Still, it’s hard not to feel that 'Most Wanted' has hedged its bets between the perspectives of two characters, when we’d rather see Olivier/Léger’s story through his own naive eyes. What’s that they say about journalists becoming the story?"
Guy Lodge, Variety
WE ARE LITTLE ZOMBIES - Makoto Nagahisa
"So begins a wild journey to hell and back that’s shaped by the frenzied violence of a child’s imagination, and paced with the staccato mania of four prepubescent nihilists as they role-play their way through a version of the grieving process that’s been gamified beyond all recognition. The title shot is a start menu. The glitchy score -- written by Nagahisa himself -- sounds like it’s bleating out of an NES. Ishi (Mizuno Satoshi), a chubby kid whose parents were burned alive in a wok-related fire, confuses a public toilet for a save point. Shots interrupt each other like random battles. The plot is broken up into platform-like game levels that guide its young characters back to their emotions in such an erratic way that Elizabeth Kübler-Ross wouldn’t even be able to follow with a strategy guide. DABDA doesn’t really apply here; try the Konami Code."
David Ehrlich, IndieWire
THINGS I'VE HEARD, READ, SEEN OR WATCHED LATELY
Heard: Nate and Hayes (Jones), La Piovra (Morricone), Return from Witch Mountain (Schifrin), Jennifer 8 (Young/Jarre), Monos (Levi), Il Prato (Morricone), Le petit prince (Petitgirard), Hoffa (Newman), Jojo Rabbit (Giacchino), Prince of Players (Herrmann), Stepmom (Williams), The Great Train Robbery (Goldsmith), Kiss Me, Kate (Porter), Symphony No. 4 (Mahler), Those Daring Young Men in Their Jaunty Jalopies (Goodwin), Blondie (Blondie), The Italian Job (Jones), E Ridendo L'uccise (Morricone), Ghost Story (Sarde), A Walk in the Clouds (Jarre), Venetian Lies (Morricone), Men in Black: International (Elfman/Bacon), Dial M for Murder (Tiomkin), Airlines (Desplat), The House with a Clock in Its Walls (Barr), The Trouble with Harry (Herrmann), The Sentinel (Melle), Americans (Barry), Bride of Frankenstein (Waxman), South Pacific (Rodgers), The Poseidon Adventure (Williams), Standing Stone (McCartney), Earthquake (Williams), The Songs That Got Away (Brightman)
Read: The Agent, by George V. Higgins
Seen: Normally I would have visited my family in the Bay Area for the Thanksgiving weekend, but even without the latest spike in COVID rates, the fact that for me just getting there would mean bus-bus-airport-plane-airport-airport tram-BART train-commuter train ruled that out in the current pandemic climate -- it would have been like the decontamination sequences in The Andromeda Strain, but in reverse. Given that Los Angeles-area theaters have been closed for the last eight months, I was surprised to see that at least three San Francisco theaters I would normally go to are actually still open (though they may have closed since last weekend, due to the latest shutdown). So if I was in the Bay Area for the holiday as in a normal year (hey, remember normal years?) and wanted to risk COVID, I could have actually seen Ammonite, The Climb, Come Play, The Croods: A New Age, Freaky, Hillbilly Elegy, Honest Thief, Last Call, The Last Vermeer, Ma Rainey's Black Bottom, Mank, Sound of Metal, Stardust, Tenet, and Vanguard. Sigh. My main hope is that when theaters do re-open, since there will not be enough brand-new releases to fill the multiplexes immediately, that they will screen some of the films that had opened elsewhere during the pandemic. The fact that I live in Los Angeles instead of Bumfudge, Idaho, makes this more likely. On the other hand, the good citizens of Bumfudge may easily have had the chance to see Tenet dozens of times already.
Watched: Twice Told Tales; Twin Peaks ("My Log Has a Message For You"); Everybody Sing; Star Trek: Discovery ("What's Past Is Prologue"); Westworld ("Trace Decay"); One Week ; Star Trek ("Court Martial"); The Traveling Executioner; UFO ("Kill Straker!")
In the pre-pandemic era, one of my few regular social events was a monthly movie trivia game in downtown Los Angeles sponsored by Vidiots. Vidiots is a Los Angeles video store that was open from 1985 to 2017, and plans to reopen in a new location in Eagle Rock with a store as well as two theaters (for more information on Vidiots, follow this link). Since the pandemic has temporarily shut down those kinds of in-person events, they have resumed monthly trivia on-line courtesy of the inevitable Zoom.
Our team frequently wins second place, and the nice prize of coming in second is getting to create the category (but not the questions) for the final round of the next game. Our team captain knows I'm a Goldsmith obsessive so he suggested a Goldsmith-themed round, for which I came up with the name (a Seinfeld reference) "That's Gold, Jerry! The Films of Jerry Goldsmith."
Because even a composer as important as Goldsmith might be considered obscure by a lot of so-called trivia experts, I'd expected the questions would only cover the most obvious topics (Planet of the Apes, Alien, Poltergeist, Rambo), but they ended up diving a bit deeper than expected. Here are the Goldsmith questions from the November game for those who are curious:
1. Goldsmith wrote the love theme for which neo-noir, which was #21 on AFI's Greatest Films list?
2. Goldsmith received a total of 18 Oscar nominations throughout his career, but only won once for the score of what 1976 horror classic?
3. Goldsmith worked with the DGA's first female president when she directed the 1994 film Angie, which stars Geena Davis as (etc. etc.). Name the director.
4. A clip of the nightmare scene from The 'Burbs, which ended with a shot of Mr. Rogers on a television. The questions were:
a. What is the full name of Tom Hanks' character?
b. What is the brand of chainsaw that cuts through the wall?
c. What color is Art's necktie?
d. Who directed A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood?
5. Goldsmith composed the score for what two Academy Award-winning movies starring Sidney Poitier?
6. Goldsmith composed the score for this 60s movie based on a novel by Jane Trahey and directed by Ida Lupino. Tagline: “It’s Heaven In Earthly Entertainment!”
7. What was the final feature film Goldsmith scored before his death in 2004 at age 75? Hints: It was directed by one of his most frequent collaborators and features a cameo by racecar driver Jeff Gordon.
The remaining six questions were actually brief excerpts from his scores, which I cannot recreate here so instead I'll list their director(s) and year.
8. Jeannot Szwarc, 1984
9. Robert Wise, 1979
10. Tony Bancroft & Barry Cook, 1998
11. Joe Dante, 1984
12. David Anspaugh, 1993
13. Paul Verhoeven, 1992