8 items from 2015
When Platoon won four Oscars in 1987, it marked not only a new chapter in Oliver Stone's career as a filmmaker, but also the end of a decade-long battle. Since the 1970s, Stone had been struggling to make his harrowing account of the horrors he'd seen firsthand as a soldier in the Vietnam conflict, but was famously turned down by every major studio in Hollywood.
Platoon, and Stone, finally found sanctuary at a small independent studio with a grand-sounding name: the Hemdale Film Corporation. It was Hemdale, and its co-founder John Daly, that had taken a chance on Stone, and when Platoon came out in 1986, the gamble proved to be a shrewd one: its $6m investment was covered by the first month's ticket sales, and the film »
Only two Steven Spielberg features have not been scored by John Williams: The Color Purple (Quincy Jones) and Twilight Zone: The Movie (Jerry Goldsmith). Three, if you include Duel, although technically that's a TV movie. Now there's a third (or fourth, depending on your stance on the whole Duel thing) in the shape of upcoming espionage drama Bridge Of Spies. Due to "a minor health issue, now corrected," John Williams is no longer scoring the film.Perhaps to sweeten that epoch-interrupting news, the director has offered the world a glimpse at the film in the shape of this first-look still. Spielberg has instead filled the gap with Thomas Newman. He's a composer with an impressive CV in his own right, spanning everything from Pixar animations to Sam Mendes' dramatic fare, and is currently scoring a spy movie of a different stripe in Mendes's Spectre.As for the still, »
The original animated movie opened on February 15, 1950 to universal acclaim and 65 years later, Cinderella has become one of studio’s most treasured titles.
Branagh has once again turned to the Scottish composer Patrick Doyle for the score. The album features original music by Doyle marking the eleventh time he has teamed with Branagh.
In 1989, the director commissioned Doyle to compose the score for Henry V and they have subsequently collaborated on numerous pictures, including Dead Again, Mary Shelley’S Frankenstein, Much Ado About Nothing, Hamlet, As You Like It and Thor, and most recently Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit.
From the worlds »
- Michelle McCue
Jake Gittes: How much are you worth?
Noah Cross: I have no idea. How much do you want?
Jake Gittes: I just wanna know what you’re worth. More than 10 million?
Noah Cross: Oh my, yes!
Jake Gittes: Why are you doing it? How much better can you eat? What could you buy that you can’t already afford?
Noah Cross: The future, Mr. Gittes! The future. Now, where’s the girl? I want the only daughter I’ve got left. As you found out, Evelyn was lost to me a long time ago.
Jake Gittes: Who do you blame for that? Her?
Noah Cross: I don’t blame myself. You see, Mr. Gittes, most people never have to face the fact that at the right time and the right place, they’re capable of anything.
Chinatown is a masterpiece, »
- John Ostrander
Hollywood has no shortage of talented composers crafting mostly serviceable tunes for the next young adult literary adaptation or prestige awards tearjerker. But for every auteur like Hans Zimmer and John Williams, you have musical yes men pounding out ominous notes in anticipation of the next horror movie jump scare or making ratatat noise to underscore a superhero chase scene. The film world screams for diverse sounds, but is often left wanting when scores become interchangeable to feed the Hollywood machine. The current film decade is no different from any other in terms of talent, mediocrity, and ingenuity, but could always use a boost from professionals who bring specificity to the table. These five forgotten or diminished artists, each among them with varied yet singular skills, are screaming to be brought back into the Hollywood fold to create their signature sounds.
One of the most prolific composers from the 90’s, »
- Shane Ramirez
I love movie and television soundtracks. I’ll often use a given soundtrack while I work, letting it fuel my writing. I can’t listen to music with lyrics in them; that interferes with my process. I’ll get themes, characters, even scenes or whole plots from the music. Soundtrack music is in service of the story that the film is trying to tell; it’s a part of the narrative, heightening the emotion that’s being invoked.
I have my own particular favorites. The composers usually have a large body of work but certain key works resonate within me – Jerry Goldsmith’s Chinatown and Patton, James Horner with Field of Dreams, Shaun Davey’s Waking Ned Devine, Elmer Bernstein’s To Kill A Mockingbird (has there ever been a more beautiful and evocative theme?) and, of course, The Magnificent Seven.
I’ve also been very fond of Alan Silvestri »
- John Ostrander
The creepy clown is back!
Eric Bowen (Sam Rockwell) and wife Amy (Rosemarie DeWitt) desperately try and hold on to their youngest daughter Madison (Kennedi Clements), who’s been targeted by terrifying apparitions in the first trailer for Poltergeist.
The new film is a contemporary take on the classic tale about a family whose suburban home is haunted by evil forces. When the terrifying apparitions escalate their attacks and hold the youngest daughter captive, the family must come together to rescue her before she disappears forever.
“They’re here” sent shivers down the spine of moviegoers in 1982 when the terrifying horror classic, directed by Tobe Hooper and produced by Steven Spielberg, was released. What made the film even more scary was the chilling score by Jerry Goldsmith.
The trailer looks tremendous and it did its job in scaring me, so I’m willing to give it a go (now I »
- Michelle McCue
Ranking any franchise is a personal and difficult process, but the Alien series represents its own challenges. Were you more affected by the intimate shocks of the 1979 original, or the more action-led 1986 sequel? Were you impressed by Alien 3's commitment to its bleak tone, or irked by its soupy darkness?
You're sure to have your own opinions as to how the Alien movies should be ranked, though we'd wager that, like us, you'd place the Alien Vs Predator spin-offs quite far down the list. But then there's Ridley Scott's prequel, Prometheus, a film some might rank far above Jean-Pierre Jeunet's quirky Alien Resurrection, and perhaps even David Fincher's Alien 3.
Accepting, then, that the ranking below is very much down to personal taste, »
8 items from 2015
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