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Aisle Seat 5-26: Tom Cruise in 4K UHD, Kino Lorber May Releases
Posted By: Andy Dursin 5/25/2020 - 10:00 PM
Because we’ve been stuck in the midst of a COVID-driven lockdown, I’ve found it comforting to revisit apocalyptic, end-of-the-world fare on home video over these last few weeks. If you think it’s been bad being locked up over the last two months – well, wait, an extraterrestrial invasion and being trapped in Tim Robbins’ basement could well be worse.
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Film Score Friday 5/22/20
Posted By: Scott Bettencourt 5/21/2020 - 10:00 PM
The latest score CD from Intrada is the first-ever commercial release of Frank De Vol's score for the 1972 Western ULZANA'S RAID, one of more than a dozen films De Vol scored for director Robert Aldrich, a collaboration which included such classics as Kiss Me Deadly, What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? and The Dirty Dozen. The film, from an original screenplay by the terrific screenwiter Alan Sharp (Night Moves, Rob Roy and, inexplicably, Damnation Alley) is a morally ambivalent adventure drama about a platoon hunting for an escaped Apache warrior. The cast is led by Burt Lancaster, Bruce Davison, Richard Jaeckel and Joaquin Martinez as Ulzana, and though the film received mixed reviews at the time of its release, partly due to its startling scenes of violence and torture, its reputation has deservedly soared over the years. While De Vol is often remembered more for his comedies and TV themes (and his on-screen role as bandleader Happy Kyne on Fernwood 2 Night and America 2-Night), he scored plenty of dramas, adventures and thrillers, and Intrada's release presents his complete, exciting 60-minute score.


Quartet has announced two brand new score CDs -- the first-ever release of Lee Holdridge's score to the 1983 hit comedy MR. MOM, starring Michael Keaton and Teri Garr (and featuring an early screenplay by John Hughes); and an expanded, two-disc set of Angelo Francesco Lavagnino's music for the two-part epic KALI-YUG: LA DEA DELLA VENDETTA/IL MISTERO DEL TEMPIO INDIANO


Following their CD premiere releases of The Baby and the Oscar-nominated score for Birds Do It, Bees Do It, Caldera has announced a new CD of another previously unreleased score by Gerald Fried, ONE POTATO, TWO POTATO, a groundbreaking drama from 1964, directed by Larry Peerce (Goodbye, Columbus; The Other Side of the Mountain; Two-Minute Warning). The film told of the struggles of an interracial couple, and starred Bernie Hamilton and Barbara Barrie; Barrie won a Best Actress Award at the Cannes Film Festival for her performance in the film, and would be Oscar-nominated 15 years later for her best-remembered role, as Dennis Christopher's mother in Breaking Away; the film also earned an Oscar nomination for its original screenplay. The Caldera CD features the film's score as well as an audio commentary from Fried himself.


CDS AVAILABLE THIS WEEK

Kali-Yug: La Dea Della Vendetta/Il Mistero Del Tempio Indiano
- Angelo Francesco Lavagnino - Quartet
Le Fils Prefere/Mademoiselle
 - Philippe Sarde - Music Box
Les Veces Etaient Fermes de L'Interieur/Le Chasseur de Chez Maxim's - Paul Misraki - Music Box 
Mr. Mom - Lee Holdridge - Quartet
Ulzana's Raid - Frank De Vol - Intrada Special Collection 

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Film Score Friday 5/15/20
Posted By: Scott Bettencourt 5/14/2020 - 10:00 PM
Intrada is planning to release one new CD next week. For those who don't mind hints, it's a previously unreleased Western score from the early 1970s composed by a five-time Oscar nominee. For those who are happy to learn what it is in advance, go to this link.


Dragon's Domain has announced four new film music CDs -- THE PAUL CHIHARA COLLECTION VOL. 4, featuring a new re-recording of the composer's score for the cult sci-fi classic DEATH RACE 2000 plus his original score tracks from CRACKERS, the 1984 English-language, Louis Malle-directed remake of Big Deal on Madonna Street, and FOREVER, LULU, the 1987 comedy thriller starring Hanna Schygulla, Deborah Harry and Alec Baldwin; Richard Band's score for the recent horror comedy EXORCISM AT 60,000 FEET; William Stromberg's score for the 2018 horror-comedy anthology film TALES OF FRANKENSTEIN; and a CD pairing scores for two Australian science-fiction films, INCIDENT AT RAVEN'S GATE, scored by Graham Tardif, and THE TIME GUARDIAN, composed by Allan Zavod.


CDS AVAILABLE THIS WEEK

The David Spear Collection: Volume One
 - David Spear - Dragon's Domain 
Doctor Who: Series 12
 - Segun Akinola - Silva
Doctor Who: The Sun Makers
 - Dudley Simpson - Silva
Doctor Who: The Visitation
 - Paddy Kingsland - Silva
Ghost Warrior
 - Richard Band - Dragon's Domain
The Haunting of Morella
 - Frederic Ensign Teetsel, Chuck Cirino - Dragon's Domain 

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Aisle Seat 5-12: "Paramount Presents" Blu-Ray Remasters
Posted By: Andy Dursin 5/11/2020 - 10:00 PM
The quintessential ’80s thriller that set the standard for a stream of imitators to follow, FATAL ATTRACTION (119 mins., 1987, R; Paramount) kicks off a trio of “Paramount Presents” Blu-Ray remasters, offering new 4K film transfers, collectible slipcovers boasting fold-out reproductions of each film’s respective one-sheet poster, and a few new extras.
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May Issue of FSM ONLINE Is Live!
Posted By: Tim Curran 5/10/2020 - 3:00 AM
The May edition of FSM ONLINE is live. In this month’s cover story, Erik Heine uncovers Part 1 of 15 Great Under-the-Radar Themes, from composers JOHN BARRY, DANNY ELFMAN, JERRY GOLDSMITH, JOHN WILLIAMS, ALAN SILVESTRI and more. Also in this issue, MICHAEL ABELS takes us to school with HBO's BAD EDUCATION and Netflix's ALL NIGHT AND A DAY; Steven C. Smith fills us in on his new book about MAX STEINER; an appeal for reviving Disney’s FANTASIA; DAVID E. RUSSO discusses his score to the 9/11 film WINDOWS ON THE WORLD, starring Edward James Olmos; GARETH COKER breaks down the musical elements of video game ORI AND THE WILL OF THE WISPS; an Under-the-Radar Ear of the Month contest; lots of album reviews, including STARGIRL, DISNEYNATURE: DOLPHIN REEF, TROLLS WORLD TOUR and THE BANKER; more embedded audio clips, and more. Enjoy!

Subscribers, you’ll get notification by email shortly. Or, just go here to log in. For those who want to join FSM ONLINE, go here, click on the “Subscribe” link and follow the instructions. And email us if you have any questions.

Thank you for support, especially during these trying times. Enjoy the issue, and stay safe!

Sincerely,

Your Friends at FSM ONLINE

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Film Score Friday 5/8/20
Posted By: Scott Bettencourt 5/7/2020 - 10:00 PM
The latest release from Intrada is an expanded edition of John Williams' score for the 1984 rural drama THE RIVER, which starred Mel Gibson and Sissy Spacek as a farming family facing hard times. The film was famously one of three major studio releases that year which focused on the struggles of farming families, and surprisingly enough, all three films earned Best Actress nominations, with Spacek and Country's Jessica Lange losing out to Places in the Heart's Sally Field, whose "you like me" acceptance speech is better remembered today than the film which inspired it. The River reunited Williams with director Mark Rydell, the pair having previously collaborated on The Reivers, The Cowboys and Cinderella Liberty (and shockingly, the magnificent Cowboys score was the only Williams/Rydell collaboration not to receive an Original Score nomination, but since Williams actually received two of the five Score nominations that year, I doubt he was especially bitter). The original MCA soundtrack LP (later released on CD by Varese Sarabande) was a mixture of cues from the score and Williams' own re-working of the material. The Intrada release features both the original LP sequencing as well as the complete score composed for the film, plus a handful of alternates.

Intrada has also reissued two out-of-print, expanded editions of classic scores demonstrating two popular composers at the absolute peak of their talents -- Jerry Goldsmith's CHINATOWN, featuring both the LP sequencing and the full score from the film; and Alan Silvestri's WHO FRAMED ROGER RABBIT, a three-disc set featuring the full original score, the LP sequencing, and the scores for Roger Rabbit shorts composed by Bruce Broughton and James Horner.


Music Box has announced two new score CD releases -- a disc pairing two previously unreleased scores by Philippe Sarde, LE FILS PREFERE and MADEMOISELLE; and the CD premiere of two scores by Paul Misraki (Alphaville), LES VECES ETAIENT FERMES DE L'INTERIEUR and LE CHASSEUR DE CHEZ MAXIM’S

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Film Score Friday 5/1/20
Posted By: Scott Bettencourt 4/30/2020 - 10:00 PM
Intrada plans to announce one new CD next week.


The latest release from La-La Land is a two-disc set featuring the first-ever commercial release of the score for the 1999 superhero comedy MYSTERY MEN, which was a box-office disappointment at the time of its release (and was the subject of a particularly brutal and hilarous takedown by Jeffrey Ross at the Friars Club roast of Jerry Stiller) but has since become a cult favorite. The film has an eclectic cast including Ben Stiller, Janeane Garofalo, Claire Forlani, William H. Macy, Kel Mitchell, Wes Studi, Paul Reubens, Greg Kinnear, Lena Olin and Geoffrey Rush, and the original score was composed by Stephen Warbeck, hot off his Oscar win for Shakespeare in Love. In the final film, many of his cues were replaced by new music by the great Shirley Walker, and the La-La Land Mystery Men features Warbeck's 62-minute original score on Disc One and Walker's 28 minutes of new score on Disc Two.


The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has announced changes in the rules in the 93rd Academy Awards, including some related to film music. 

According to the new rules, "In the Music (Original Score) category, for a score to be eligible, it must comprise a minimum of 60% original music. Additionally, for sequels and franchise films, a score must have a minimum of 80% new music." If this change had been made earlier, for example, John Williams' nominated scores for the recent Star Wars sequels would probably not have been eligible, nor would Alan Silvestri's shortlisted scores for the last two Avengers films.

And for those who collect rare For Your Consideration score CDs, "As part of the Academy’s sustainability effort, the 93rd Awards season will be the final year DVD screeners will be allowed to be distributed; these mailings will be discontinued starting in 2021 for the 94th Academy Awards. Access to the Academy Screening Room will continue to be made available for all eligible releases. The distribution of physical music CDs, screenplays and hardcopy mailings, including but not limited to paper invites and screening schedules, will also be discontinued next year."

The biggest news is that films which had planned theatrical releases this year (and only this year) which instead were released directly to streaming services will still be eligible for Oscar consideration. And in a related but surprising move, "For films to more easily meet theatrical exhibition requirements when theaters reopen, the Academy also will expand the number of qualifying theaters beyond Los Angeles County to include venues in additional U.S. metropolitan areas: the City of New York; the Bay Area; Chicago, Illinois; Miami, Florida; and Atlanta, Georgia."

Also, the categories Sound Editing and Sound Mixing are being merged into one category, Sound, but all the craftsmen who might previously been eligible in one of those categories (most likely Supervising Sound Editors, Sound Designers, Production Mixers and Re-Recording Mixers) will still be eligible in the combined category with a potential six people nominated per film. This seems a logical compromise, as who besides people in the sound fields can accurately delineate between Mixing and Editing?


This has nothing to do with film music, but it is with a heavy heart that I announce that my favorite international film actor, Irrfan Khan, has died at the age of 53 of natural causes. Khan made his feature film debut in Mira Nair's 1988 international hit Salaam Bombay!, and worked steadily in Indian cinema for many years. He had his English-language breakthrough as Kal Penn's father in Nair's family drama The Namesake, and since then he balanced Indian and Western films, with a variety of projects including The Darjeeling Limited, Slumdog Millionaire, The Amazing Spider-Man, Life of Pi (as the adult Pi) and Inferno.

One only has to watch his performances as the police chief hunting for the missing Daniel Pearl in A Mighty Heart, the lonely everyman hero of The Lunchbox, and the charismatic billionaire owner of Jurassic World to get a sense of his extraordinary range. I know it's a cliche, but he will be truly missed. 

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Film Score Monthly Online
30 Great Under-the-Radar Themes, Part 1
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Ear of the Month Contest: 30 Great Under-the-Radar Themes
Today in Film Score History:
May 26
Alfred Newman begins recording his score for Man Hunt (1941)
Bruno Nicolai born (1926)
David Torn born (1953)
Earle Hagen died (2008)
George Greeley died (2007)
Howard Goodall born (1958)
Jerry Goldsmith begins recording his score for The Satan Bug (1964)
Miles Davis born (1926)
Nicola Piovani born (1946)
Sonny Sharrock died (1994)
William Bolcom born (1938)
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