Wednesday, September 21, 2005


After posting this as a comment on another blog. I am offering it here in praise of my favorite film score composers.

I loved a 1979 movie called ALIEN. This may shock you but I loved the Jerry Goldsmith film score, which sounded a lot like minor key Allan Hovanhess (check spelling). This was the same composer (Goldsmith) who wrote the background music for the original PLANET OF THE APES; STAR TREK--THE MOTION PICTURE: the theme music for STAR TREK--THE NEXT GENERATION (which was derived from ST--TMP); the theme music for THE WALTON'S TV series; POLTERGEIST; the Satanic Chants from OMEN I and DAMIEN--OMEN II, not to mention a myriad of science fiction and crime drama movies. Regrettably, Mister Goldsmith has passed away, but his many compositions live on in our favorite movies and soundtrack recordings. But back to ALIEN The Main Title is both haunting and magical. A hard combination to achieve, but it actually sets the tone for the entire picture. Wonderful composition for a wonderful science fiction movie.

As for STAR WARS...Could we ever imagine them six without John Williams film scores? I'm serious. Can you imagine the double sunset on Tatooine without the soaring, romantic "Force Theme?" Can you imagine any other music except the themes that you've heard since 1977? Luke's Theme; the Force Theme; Princess Leia's Theme?: Doesn't the music fit every scene to a T in those films?

The next time you watch the movies--any of the above will do, STAR WARS related or not--give an extra listen to the compositions in the background. Far from just background music, you will hear reoccurring themes, l Wagnerian Leitmotifs, swirling through the action, often emphasizing or predicting the action.

Just think about it.

The closing title of STAR WARS I--the PHANTOM MENACE: Though you never hear it in the movie proper, the final notes of the closing credits are a very slow and very quiet version of the Darth Vader Theme,What about STAR WARS II? The scene where Anakin reveals rage and pain at the loss of his mother; where he confesses to Padme about the way he murdered the sandpeople. Could you imagine any other music besides the Darth Vader Theme? And what about the end to REVENGE OF THE SITH?. With the inclusion of a few snippets from the movie proper, this is actually a replay of the end title of STAR WARS--A NEW HOPE, PART IV. Like I said, it uses a number of themes from REVENGE OF THE SITH, but for the most part, we're talking about an expanded version of the finale to STAR WARS IV--a wonderful form of foreshadowing in which we are told that there will indeed me a happy ending at some point.

I'm sorry about "wasting your time," but this topic that has been tempting me for some time. I love film music, especially John Williams and the late Jerry Goldsmith and I wanted our readers to know that I consider their works to be legitimate works of art.




Anonymous Anonymous said...

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9/21/2005 12:57 PM  
Blogger Daniel Gallagher said...

This being a classical music blog, it might interest anonymous to know that composer, Johannes Brahms, used to shoot cats with arrows. This, of course, is a silly, barbaric practice which should not be practiced on innocent kitties, but rather, reserved for the anonymous posters of over-commercialized spam. We love your pussy, anonymous, but we'd like you personally to serve as the target at our local archery club next Friday. In fact, we're doing a replay of William Tell. Please be so kind as to hold the apple infront of that empty, black pump that you laughingly call a heart!

9/22/2005 9:08 AM  
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