Mr. Cellophane

In a location adjacent to a place in a city of some significance, what comes out of my head is plastered on the walls of this blog.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

The film music of 2011.

My favorite scores of 2011:

(I really don't feel like describing why I loved these scores. Just take it on faith that these were the scores I loved most from last year.)

Other good scores:

The Adjustment Bureau (Thomas Newman), The Big Year (Theodore Shapiro), Dolphin Tale (Mark Isham), The Greatest Miracle (Mark McKenzie), The Help (Thomas Newman), Paul (David Arnold), Priest (Christopher Young), Puss in Boots (Henry Jackman), Rio (John Powell), The Rum Diary (Christopher Young), Unknown (John Ottman and Alexander Rudd), A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas (William Ross) and Your Highness (Steve Jablonsky...I'm as surprised as you are.)

Some nice unreleased scores:

Bad Teacher - Michael Andrews
Colombiana - Nathaniel Mechaly
50/50 - Michael Giacchino
The Muppets - Christophe Beck
Young Adult - Rolfe Kent

My favorite new CDs of 2011:

The Battle of Neretva/The Naked and the Dead (Bernard Herrmann - Tribute): A pair of lively war scores from Herrmann splendidly performed by the Moscow Symphony Orchestra.

Clue (John Morris - La La Land): A long-overdue release of one of Morris's finest scores, buoyed by a peppy main theme.

Devil (Fernando Velazquez - Varese Sarabande): The Varese CD Club was, for the most part, swimming in a circle this year, but they did find time for this thundering score to the underrated thriller.

The Golden Child (John Barry/Michel Colombier - La La Land): Colombier's score may fit the film better, but Barry's lush music is a damn fine listen on its own.

Grace Quigley (John Addison - Quartet): The long-forgotten dark comedy (that paired Katharine Hepburn and Nick Nolte!) received an utterly charming Addison score; one of the year's true surprises.

Masada (Jerry Goldsmith/Morton Stevens - Intrada): One of the finest scores ever written for television; Goldsmith and Stevens produced a truly exciting work.

Megaforce (Jerrold Immel - BSX): The early 80s cheese fest gets a score to match from "Dallas" composer Immel, anchored by a delightfully over-the-top main theme.

Ordeal by Innocence (Pino Donaggio - Kritzerland): Perhaps the best of the year's three hidden Donaggio gems, a moody (and curiously rejected) mystery score.

Rampage (Elmer Bernstein - Intrada): There are a great many travelogue cues for a film ostensibly about a safari, but make no mistake: they are lovely.

Slipstream (Elmer Bernstein - Perserverance): Legalities be damned! The release of this enchanting score is nothing short of a blessing. (It'll more than do until some label smartens up and gives us Black Cauldron.)

Space: Above and Beyond (Shirley Walker - La La Land): Epic music for the short-lived Fox series; almost like the bastard son of "Batman: TAS" and Turbulence.

Stay Tuned (Bruce Broughton - Intrada): Miracles can happen! Broughton's diverse score for the shameful guilty pleasure finally sees the light of day.

Other notable releases from 2011 that I have yet to buy because of my financial woes:

Bad Girls (Jerry Goldsmith - La La Land)
The Core (Christopher Young - Intrada)
First Knight (Jerry Goldsmith - La La Land)
Gremlins (Jerry Goldsmith - FSM)
Kidco (Michael Small - Intrada)
Scrooged (Danny Elfman - La La Land)
Something Wicked This Way Comes/Regarding Henry (Georges Delerue - Universal France)
Trading Places (Elmer Bernstein - La La Land)

The 'Burton/Elfman Music Box' "This'd be a nice collection to have, but are you fucking kidding me with that price?!" award:

Bernard Herrmann at 20th Century Fox (Varese Club). This 14-disc set features a number of 'no fan should be without this' scores (The Ghost and Mrs. Muir, The Day the Earth Stood Still), as well as more obscure titles (Hangover Square, White Witch Doctor), but 200 dollars is asking a bit much.

Best score for a non-film: "Cirque du Soleil - Iris" by Danny Elfman. While some of Elfman's recent work was a shade disappointing (Real Steel, Terminator: Salvation), this full-bodied score is an absolute delight.

My favorite pieces of film music:

"The Accountant" - Drive Angry 3D (Michael Wandmacher)
"Amat Victoria Curam" - The Mechanic (Mark Isham)
"Buckingham's Departure" - The Three Musketeers (Paul Haslinger)
"Final Round" - Real Steel (Danny Elfman)
"Fright Night" - Fright Night (Ramin Djawadi)
"George Valentin" - The Artist (Ludovic Bource)
"It's So Overt It's Covert" - Sherlock Holmes: a Game of Shadows (Hans Zimmer)
"Main Titles" - Final Destination 5 (Brian Tyler)
"Morning Routine" - Rio (John Powell)
"Priest" - Priest (Christopher Young)
"Rango Suite" - Rango (Hans Zimmer)
"Rum Diary" - The Rum Diary (Christopher Young)
"Shark Attack" - Soul Surfer (Marco Beltrami)
"The Terrible Awful" - The Help (Thomas Newman)
"Theme from Tower Heist" - Tower Heist (Christophe Beck and Jake Monaco)



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