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      CommentAuthorThor
    • CommentTimeNov 22nd 2018 edited
    Jules wrote
    I'd forgotten about a few of those to be fair - liked Don't Worry and Tulip Fever.
    I think often composers do get to a certain age where they are past their prime and the music they write is either extremely derivative of their old work or is fairly boring and unmemorable, often utilising modern scoring techniques to not great effect. I don't want to generalise and hope that doesn't come across as insulting or condescending, as I think there are many cases where that is absolutely untrue. But it's surely just a natural thing - illness complicating things, not as much energy etc.
    I love that many composers still go for it long past a traditional retirement age though, it's inspiring, and some of the work done by John Williams in the last twenty years would have to be some of the best I've ever heard, so there you go.


    Well, in terms of Williams, he hasn't done a truly great 'wow' score since 2005, IMO (WAR HORSE probably comes closest, but even that is lacking). Something "happened" with him in the break from film music between 2005 and 2008, and he hasn't really been himself since.

    For Elfman, it's different, though. He got a new creative boost in 2005, with the release of his concert work 'Serenada Schizophrana' and its quasi-minimalist, Glassian soundscape. He's nurtured that in the indie and drama scores since then, which are almost always top notch. But 90% of the 'mainstream' stuff is either boring or noisy or somehow 'uninspired'. I know he likes to juggle the two to have a versatile slate, but IMO he should take a break from the big things and just do smaller stuff for a while.
    I am extremely serious.
  1. Thor wrote
    Well, in terms of Williams, he hasn't done a truly great 'wow' score since 2005, IMO (WAR HORSE probably comes closest, but even that is lacking). Something "happened" with him in the break from film music between 2005 and 2008, and he hasn't really been himself since.

    Imagine thinking this. dizzy
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      CommentAuthorErik Woods
    • CommentTimeNov 23rd 2018 edited
    Thor being Thor.

    Remember folks, never go full Thor.

    -Erik-
    host and producer of CINEMATIC SOUND RADIO | www.cinematicsound.net | www.facebook.com/cinematicsound | I HAVE TINNITUS!
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      CommentAuthorThor
    • CommentTimeNov 23rd 2018 edited
    It's not a terribly controversial opinion. He had three brilliant scores in 2005 (MUNICH, MEMOIRS and WORLDS) and one good (REVENGE), and nothing he has done since has been on that level of engagement, despite certain "highlight tracks" here and there.
    I am extremely serious.
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      CommentAuthorErik Woods
    • CommentTimeNov 23rd 2018
    You're still going full Thor... but that's expected.

    -Erik-
    host and producer of CINEMATIC SOUND RADIO | www.cinematicsound.net | www.facebook.com/cinematicsound | I HAVE TINNITUS!
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      CommentAuthorAidabaida
    • CommentTimeNov 25th 2018
    the sheer intricacy of the force awakens made it a "wow" score for me. and there's several pieces in the Last Jedi score that nobody but Williams could have pulled off. I think Williams is sometimes more subtle now than in the scores of his past. I don't think anyone would argue "Lincoln" is a better score than Schindler's List, but it's still an eminently good and enjoyable score. The lilting waltz theme of "The BFG" was stuck in my head for days. He's still got it, but he's also sitting on a catalogue of masterpieces and classics, so it's easy to compare everything he writes to the glory days, and it's understandable that someone could feel that his most recent scores are not his best work.
    Bach's music is heartless and robotic.
  2. Aidabaida, your statement reflects how I feel about this matter. Great artists evolve. Their style changes and indeed I feel WIlliams' recent scores tend to sound more like concert symphonies than film music. Maybe it's what you describe as being "more subtle". Of course Williams could be as subtle as anyone at any time during his entire career. But yes, his film-musical language has evolved toward a less in-your-face style.
    I nor want Williams to do a past-Williams-pastiche, neither do I want Giacchino, Powell or any future Star Wars composer to do one.

    Volker
    Bach's music is vibrant and inspired.
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      CommentAuthorThor
    • CommentTimeNov 26th 2018
    NP: THE FOUR FEATHERS (James Horner)

    Not Horner's most accesible score, to put it that way. But I kinda like it.
    I am extremely serious.
    • CommentAuthorJules
    • CommentTimeNov 28th 2018
    Thor wrote


    Well, in terms of Williams, he hasn't done a truly great 'wow' score since 2005, IMO (WAR HORSE probably comes closest, but even that is lacking). Something "happened" with him in the break from film music between 2005 and 2008, and he hasn't really been himself since.

    For Elfman, it's different, though. He got a new creative boost in 2005, with the release of his concert work 'Serenada Schizophrana' and its quasi-minimalist, Glassian soundscape. He's nurtured that in the indie and drama scores since then, which are almost always top notch. But 90% of the 'mainstream' stuff is either boring or noisy or somehow 'uninspired'. I know he likes to juggle the two to have a versatile slate, but IMO he should take a break from the big things and just do smaller stuff for a while.


    Personally, The Book Thief and The Force Awakens are definite 'wow' scores. Rey's Theme and several of the motifs from TBT are just beautiful.
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      CommentAuthorThor
    • CommentTimeNov 28th 2018
    THE BOOK THIEF, really?!? To each their own and all that, but for me, that belongs in Williams all-time Bottom 5.
    I am extremely serious.
  3. Williams has written far too many dodgy jazz comedy scores in the 60s/70s for The Book Thief to seriously feature in a Bottom 5, but I do find it by far the least interesting score he's written in recent memory. Still a nice listen but utterly forgettable, and you can hear basically everything done much better in Angela's Ashes anyways.

    IMO The Force Awakens, Tintin and War Horse are all "wow" scores post-2005. And the others are pretty good as well.
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      CommentAuthorThor
    • CommentTimeNov 28th 2018 edited
    Edmund Meinerts wrote
    Williams has written far too many dodgy jazz comedy scores in the 60s/70s for The Book Thief to seriously feature in a Bottom 5


    Nope. I rate most of those below TBT (in fact, some of them are favourites of mine), with the exception of maybe JOHN GOLDFARB.

    Williams has written some decent scores since 2005 (especially compared to everyone else), a couple of favourites being WAR HORSE and THE POST, but not a single 'wow' score.
    I am extremely serious.
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      CommentAuthorAidabaida
    • CommentTimeNov 29th 2018
    The Book Thief is an absolutely excellent score... The opening track "One Small Fact" was one of the best cues of the year. When the strings enter I get goosebumps.
    Bach's music is heartless and robotic.
    • CommentAuthorJules
    • CommentTimeNov 29th 2018
    The Book Thief is an absolutely excellent score... The opening track "One Small Fact" was one of the best cues of the year. When the strings enter I get goosebumps.


    Glad someone else shares my love for this one.
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      CommentAuthorThor
    • CommentTimeNov 29th 2018 edited
    NP: COSMOS - A SPACE TIME ODYSSEY (Alan Silvestri)

    One of these days, I want to whittle these four volumes down to one smokin' single-disc album. Two at most. Has some great tracks, but also a LOT of "filler".
    I am extremely serious.
  4. Thor wrote
    NP: COSMOS - A SPACE TIME ODYSSEY (Alan Silvestri)

    One of these days, I want to whittle these four volumes down to one smokin' single-disc album. Two at most. Has some great tracks, but also a LOT of "filler".


    I'll expect your playlist then. wink
    Bach's music is vibrant and inspired.
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      CommentAuthorThor
    • CommentTimeNov 29th 2018
    Yup. I'll probably post it in the 'Whittler' thread over on FSM, and link to it here.

    I have a looooong list of things I need to give the same treatment, once time and energy allows.
    I am extremely serious.
  5. Christopher Lennertz - Medal of Honor: Rising Sun

    Liking it probably more than I should. Having been on a roll with the series recently, I decided to mention this one as the Lennertz scores are rarely talked about (even Djawadi was discussed more, mostly because I think many people felt it didn't suck as much as they expected; I like it personally, actually).

    Also, because it's a rare World War II shooter dealing with The Pacific Theater. Haven't played any of these. I remember not being able to get Pacific Assautl to work, but hopefully GOG.com will amend that soon enough.

    I missed most of the franchise's games because they were console exclusives. Except, of course, Allied Assault. I was always a PC boy.

    Played the first Afghanistan game, too. And I own Airborne, which I returned to recently. Proud PS3 owner. Sadly, had to return the 2010 game before I could wrap up Frontline.
    http://www.filmmusic.pl - Polish Film Music Review Website
  6. NP: Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald (2018) - James Newton Howard

    The name irks me. I've been to Grindelwald / Switzerland two times. The Eiger North Face and the neighbouring mountains make for an incredible panorama.
    Anyway. This is a very rewarding listen. I love Howard in fantasy mode. I hear that in total 5 films are scheduled in this series. I hope they'll stick to Howard. This could become his magnus opus.

    Volker
    Bach's music is vibrant and inspired.
  7. I think Howard says that he's slated up to part 3? Or at least wants to score a trilogy.
    http://www.filmmusic.pl - Polish Film Music Review Website
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      CommentAuthorThor
    • CommentTimeDec 2nd 2018 edited
    I'm rather disappointed by that, just as I was by the first. A highlight track or two, but a lot of it just meanders a bit to me. Like is so often the case with JNH in this mode in recent years, unfortunately, with the possible exception of MALEFICENT. I also enjoyed the NUTCRACKER thing more, even if it's pure pastiche.
    I am extremely serious.
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      CommentAuthorAidabaida
    • CommentTimeDec 2nd 2018
    JNH's Hunstman Winter's War is underrated. The theme still sticks with me even though I haven't listened to it for a while. He's so good at fantasy it's almost unfair.
    Bach's music is heartless and robotic.
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      CommentAuthorThor
    • CommentTimeDec 2nd 2018
    Again, a score that has great highlights, but that doesn't work for me overall.
    I am extremely serious.
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      CommentAuthorLSH
    • CommentTime7 days ago edited
    NP: THE BLUE PLANET - George Fenton

    Good god, this is good. Why can't talented folk such as him have access to +$250,000,000 productions?
  8. Not every composer is interested in working under Hollywood conditions.

    Volker
    Bach's music is vibrant and inspired.
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      CommentAuthorThor
    • CommentTime7 days ago edited
    Exactly. Which is why Fenton is one of the few composers who manage to be fresh and "himself", even today. As opposed to, say, all those talented Spaniards (Jusid, Banos, Velazquez) who get bogged down in mediocre, factory-produced sound design stuff the minute they do big Hollywood productions.

    That being said, I want to see Fenton do a science fiction movie at some point (THE ZERO THEOREM is too wacky Terry Gilliam to be properly considered science fiction, IMO).
    I am extremely serious.
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      CommentAuthorThor
    • CommentTime7 days ago
    NP: MARY QUEEN OF SCOTS (Max Richter)

    Very nice!
    I am extremely serious.