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The latest soundtrack CDs from Quartet are remastered releases of Nino Rota's scores for Franco Zeffirelli's two hit Shakespeare adaptations from the 1960s -- THE TAMING OF THE SHREW, starring Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton, a two-disc set featuring both the complete score as well as Rota's original, unused album sequencing; and a remastered version of the LP sequencing from the blockbuster hit ROMEO AND JULIET.


Bastardos y Diablos
 - Louis Febre - Dragon's Domain
Bride of Frankenstein - Franz Waxman - La-La Land 
The Dan Redfield Collection vol. 1
 - Dan Redfield - Dragon's Domain 
Deep Water
 - Toydrum - Silva
Halloween [expanded edition]
 - John Carpenter, Cody Carpenter, Daniel Davies - Sacred Bones
Il Pelo Nel Mondo
 - Bruno Nicolai, Nino Oliviero - Beat
Le Coeur en Braille/Que D'Amour!
 - Philippe Jakko - Music Box 
La Fameuse Invasion des Ours en Sicile - Rene Aubry - Milan (import)
L'Avocat/Le Tueur
 - Gregoire Hetzel - Music Box 
L'Ultimo Squalo
 - Guido & Maurizio De Angelis - Beat
The Lighthouse
 - Mark Korven - Milan
Marco Beltrami: Music for Film
 - Marco Beltrami - Silva 
Minority Report - John Williams - La-La Land
Music for Dinosaurs
 - David Spear - Dragon's Domain
Trois Jours et Une Vie
 - Rob - Music Box 


The Cave - Matthew Herbert
Closure - Jamie Christopherson
Cyrano, My Love - Romain Troulliet - Score LP Edmond on Gaumont (import)
Devil's Junction: Handy Dandy's Revenge - Alexander Bubenheim
The Elephant Queen - Alex Heffes
Emanuel - Keith Kenniff
Greener Grass - Samuel Nobles
The Immortal Hero - Yuichi Mizusawa
Jojo Rabbit - Michael Giacchino
LA Woman Rising - Jean-Paul Jenkins, Matthew Santos
The Last Fiction - Christophe Rezai
The Lighthouse - Mark Korven - Score CD on Milan
Maleficent: Mistress of Evil - Geoff Zanelli
Rezo - Oleg Karpachev
Tell Me Who I Am - Danny Bensi, Saunder Jurriaans
Thrasher Road - Chanda Dancy-Morizawa
Trick - Michael Wandmacher
Wallflower - Christopher Crooker
Zombieland: Double Tap - David Sardy


October 25
Dracula/The Curse of Frankenstein [re-recordings]
 - James Bernard - Tadlow
Legend of Dinosaurs and Monster Birds
 - Masao Yagi - Cinema-Kan (import)
The Quinn Martin Collection Vol. 2: The Invaders - Sidney Cutner, Dominic Frontiere, Irving Gertz, Richard Markowitz, Duane Tatro - La-La Land
November 1
- Rupert Gregson-Williams - Backlot
Gemini Man - Lorne Balfe - La-La Land 
November 8 
Encounter - Penka Kouneva - Notefornote
Go Fish - George Streicher - Notefornote
The Good Liar - Carter Burwell - WaterTower [CD-R]
Windjammer - Morton Gould - Sepia
November 15
The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance, vol. 1
 - Daniel Pemberton - Varese Sarabande
The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance, vol. 2 
- Daniel Pemberton, Samuel Sim - Varese Sarabande
November 22 
Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark - Marco Beltrami, Anna Drubich - eOne 
Date Unknown
La Setta
 - Pino Donaggio - Cinevox
Lavender Braid
 - Eugene - Kronos
- Richard Band - Dragon's Domain
Romeo and Juliet
- Nino Rota - Quartet
Rory's Way
 - Frank Ilfman - Kronos
 - Davide Caprelli - Kronos
The Taming of the Shrew
- Nino Rota - Quartet
Zombie Night
- Alan Howarth - Dragon's Domain


October 18 - Frederick Hollander born (1896)
October 18 - Rene Garriguenc born (1908)
October 18 - Allyn Ferguson born (1924)
October 18 - John Morris born (1926)
October 18 - Peter Best born (1943)
October 18 - Howard Shore born (1946)
October 18 - Miklos Rozsa begins recording his score for East Side, West Side (1949)
October 18 - Bernard Herrmann begins recording his score to The Wrong Man (1956) 
October 18 - Wynton Marsalis born (1961)
October 18 - Pete Carpenter died (1987)
October 18 - Jay Chattaway records his score for the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode “The Game” (1991)
October 19 - Fiorenzo Carpi born (1918)
October 19 - George Fenton born (1950)
October 19 - Victor Young begins recording his score to Scaramouche (1951)
October 19 - Johnny Harris records his score for the Buck Rogers in the 25th Century episode “Return of the Fighting 69th” (1979)
October 19 - Recording sessions begin on James Newton Howard’s score for Falling Down (1992)
October 19 - Jay Chattaway records his score for the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode “True Q” (1992)
October 19 - Jerry Goldsmith begins recording his score for Star Trek: Insurrection (1998)
October 20 - Adolph Deutsch born (1897)
October 20 - Frank Churchill born (1901)
October 20 - Tom Petty born (1950)
October 20 - Thomas Newman born (1955)
October 20 - Lucien Moraweck died (1973)
October 20 - Ron Jones records his score for the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode "Booby Trap" (1989)
October 21 - Joseph Mullendore born (1914)
October 21 - Malcolm Arnold born (1921)
October 21 - John W. Morgan born (1946)
October 21 - Brian Banks born (1955)
October 21 - Lyle Workman born (1957)
October 21 - Jerry Goldsmith records his replacement score for Seven Days in May (1963)
October 21 - David Newman begins recording his score for Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure (1987)
October 21 - Gregory Smith records his score for the Star Trek: Deep Space Nine episode “The Assignment” (1996)
October 21 - David Shire begins recording his score for Rear Window (1998)
October 21 - Gianni Ferrio died (2013)
October 22 - Giorgio Gaslini born (1929)
October 22 - Hans J. Salter begins recording his score for The Far Horizons (1954)
October 22 - Miklos Rozsa begins recording his score to Bhowani Junction (1955)
October 22 - Marc Shaiman born (1959)
October 22 - Hugo Friedhofer begins recording his score to Never So Few (1959)
October 22 - Bernard Herrmann records his score for The Alfred Hitchcock Hour episode "Body in the Barn" (1963)
October 22 - Nuno Malo born (1977)
October 23 - Manos Hadjidakis born (1925)
October 23 - Gary McFarland born (1933)
October 23 - Recording sessions begin for Dimitri Tiomkin’s score for Lost Horizon (1936)
October 23 - Graeme Revell born (1955)
October 23 - Jonathan Wolff born (1958)
October 23 - David Kitay born (1961)
October 23 - Duane Tatro records his only Mission: Impossible score, for the episode “Ultimatum” (1972)
October 23 - Paul Baillargeon records his score for the Enterprise episode “The Andorian Incident” (2001)
October 23 - Ray Ellis died (2008)
October 24 - Ernest Irving died (1953)
October 24 - David Bell records his score for the Star Trek: Deep Space Nine episode “Sacrifice of Angels” (1997)
October 24 - Merl Saunders died (2008)


BLADE RUNNER 2049 - Benjamin Wallfisch, Hans Zimmer

"The imagery’s poetic intensity extends to the effects, most notably in a sex scene involving a hologram, but it also comes into play with a callback to the earlier movie too remarkable to spoil here. Hans Zimmer and Benjamin Wallfisch’s low, ominous score works in congress with a stunning sound design that regularly steals the show: Every gunshot, explosion, or abrupt assertion pierces the air like a crescendo in this movie’s constant build towards the menacing possibilities that lurk at the end of every scene. As much as it registers as an indictment of technology, those same forces transform the movie into a whole new world."

Eric Kohn, IndieWire

"But far too often that attempt to be interesting fails. Its score (from Benjamin Wallfisch and the ever-present Hans Zimmer, detectable because your chair shakes when the music plays) lacks the pristine transcendence of the original Vangelis score. The 'Blade Runner 2049' screenplay (co-written by Logan screenwriter Michael Green and a returning Fancher) doesn’t have the thematic or even structural clarity of its predecessor. Too many of its scenes seem invented as vehicles for cool images, without the latter also informing the former."
Alissa Wilkinson, Vox
"Dimensionally, the aesthetics of the film are awe-inspiring and enriching, providing a haunting meditation on the soul. The world building of this futuristic megapolis is an exhilarating symphony of breathtaking visuals, combined with a blazing music score by Hans Zimmer and Benjamin Wallfisch, and incredibly rich VFX, manufacturing a sleek and stylish setting. Venerable cinematographer Roger Deakins should be showered with all the awards, as his work supports the existential anxiety seething through the film. His atmospheric gaze is breathtaking, and in fairness to his competitors, the category of best DP at the Oscars might as well be closed.
Rodrigo Perez, The Playlist 
"It’s not often a studio rep reads a pointed, preshow directive from a filmmaker to the critics assembled to view the movie. Alfred Hitchcock warned audiences to please not give away the secrets of 'Psycho,' but Denis Villeneuve’s orders were more succinct: Tell no one anything about the recursive, thoughtfully rich plot of his sequel to Ridley Scott’s 1982 masterpiece. This was prescient on his part, because the moment you exit 'Blade Runner 2049,' the urge to discuss its labyrinthine, Russian nesting doll storyline -- credited to screenwriters Hampton Fancher and Michael Green -- is immediate and profound. So I’ll just skirt around the edges of this remarkably smart and emotionally charged sequel and say that not only is it a worthy companion piece to the original, it’s even stronger and more assured in places. I’ll be back watching it after it opens in theatres, just to kick back and let the experience – director of photography Roger Deakins’ vast, sumptuous visuals, Hans Zimmer and Benjamin Wallfisch’s mesmerizing score, and of course the tour-de-force performances from leads Gosling, Ford, and Ana de Armas. It’s that good (and I rarely watch new movies twice). 'Blade Runner 2049' is chockablock with rich philosophical questions of what it means to be human and where the line between human and machine blurs into an unrecognizable haze. There are layers upon layers of subtext to dig through, but the film is never a slog even at over two-and-a-half hours. Deakins’ cinematography is achingly beautiful, so much so that many still images from the film wouldn’t look out of place hanging on your wall, and are almost certainly more eye-catching than anything you’ve got hanging there now. Coupled with Dennis Gassner’s magisterial production design and a score that both recalls Vangelis' original while still riveting in its own right makes the movie a genuinely immersive experience. I didn’t see it in 3-D or IMAX, but I suspect that viewing Villeneuve’s film in the latter might likely induce vertigo, given the massive, throbbing canvas that 'Blade Runner 2049' plays out against."
Marc Savlov, The Austin Chronicle
"For better and for worse, 'Blade Runner 2049' is a movie made for these indulgent, 280-character cinematic times, when plot points have to be spelled out and themes stated over and over again, with little room left for ambiguity. Villeneuve broods and luxuriates, whereas the original 'Blade Runner' had a fractured poetry to it, born probably of Scott’s own indifference to typical story mechanics. The earlier film delicately balanced terse, noirish metaphor with New Age dreaminess. All that has been replaced by something far more aggressive and familiar -- a chase/quest narrative that feels not unlike any number of sci-fi/fantasy blockbusters from the past couple of decades. Meanwhile, little echoes of Vangelis’s unforgettable 1982 soundtrack are drowned out by the BRRAAAAAAHHHM of Hans Zimmer and Benjamin Wallfisch’s score. It’s everything, and more, and too much, and somehow not enough."
Bilge Ebiri, The Village Voice 

"Orchestrated by 'Sicario' and 'Prisoners' director Denis Villeneuve, taking over for Scott (who produced), this is the blockbuster sequel as extended club remix: It takes a hit song -- a midnight cyber ballad from the New Wave yesterday -- and stretches it way out, distorting notes and building on motifs. That’s literally true of the movie’s soundtrack, which cannibalizes that seminal synth-and-sax Vangelis score for stray blasts of familiar melody, then nearly drowns them underneath the rumble of one of Hans Zimmer’s assaults on the speakers. More broadly, there’s also the way that an economical sci-fi classic has birthed a two-hour-and-44-minute encore: a longer, slower, heavier return trip to Philip K. Dick’s nightmare tomorrow."
A.A. Dowd, The Onion AV Club 
"It’s still raining in Los Angeles -- actually, now it looks like thick sheets of sludgy sleet are pounding down -- and those dark synths swirl in 'Blade Runner 2049,' a colossal piece of retro-futuristic gorgeousness. At well over two-and-a-half hours, the movie impresses (and oppresses) with its mood: Sometimes it’s an orgy of neon-colored street life; elsewhere it’s an existential thumb-sucker that Russia’s Andrei Tarkovsky would have been proud to sign; and always, it’s in thrall to the stylishly downbeat vision that Ridley Scott hatched back in 1982. As with the original film, Greek composer Vangelis is the real star here -- his keening keyboard themes have been acid-washed by today’s re-scorers, Benjamin Wallfisch and Hans Zimmer, yet the 'Chariots of Fire' wizard’s aural signature echoes through these urban canyons like a welcoming beacon. Immersing you in a complete wow, 'Blade Runner 2049' is the thinking person’s sci-fi event of the year."
Joshua Rothkopf, Time Out New York 
"'Blade Runner 2049 is gorgeous. Cinematographer Roger Deakins has shot what is one of the most beautiful movies ever made, and yet somehow he still won’t win an Oscar this year because life is cruel. It’s a brighter movie than the original. The dingy police headquarters of the first film -- that sometimes felt like it might be more appropriate for a movie like 'Cobr'a than something set in 2019 -- have been replaced with something more sterile. It’s always overcast, but a lot more of the film takes plays during the day -- and not always in Los Angeles -- which opens up this world in a way we didn’t see in the first movie. And Hans Zimmer’s score just beats you into submission in a way I don’t now how to make sound positive. But it’s the score you probably think you remember from the first film that isn’t always the case. If you rewatch the first movie you’ll notice weird moments, like when Deckard and Rachael start kissing and the score has that over-saxaphoned sound that would make more sense in something like Arthur. (Also, the shirts that Deckard wears in the first movie are almost laughably ‘80s. It’s like Deckard moonlights as the bass player for Spandau Ballet. It only gets a pass because for most of the movie he’s wearing a cool jacket.)"
Mike Ryan, Uproxx 
"Together with DP Roger Deakins (in the most spectacular of their three collaborations) and a gifted team of design artists (led by 'Spectre' production designer Dennis Gassner), Villeneuve offers a bracing vision of where humankind is headed, iconically lit in amber, neon hues and stark fluorescent white. Those are not necessarily the colors one associates with film noir. But then, 'Blade Runner 2049' could hardly be considered a conventional example of the style, using its obligatory blaster-pistol shootouts and gymnastic hand-to-hand combat (nods to the original) to lend excitement to its more profound philosophical agenda -- aided by Benjamin Wallfisch and Hans Zimmer’s atmospheric score, which features a few nice synth jazz stretches, but leans more on bass-vibrating Dolby flatulence than what might typically be called music."
Peter Debruge, Variety 
"There was controversy and displeasure in fan quarters when news leaked that the original score by Villeneuve's regular composer, the unorthodox and deeply inventive Johan Johannson [sic], was being replaced by music from the more conventional team of Benjamin Wallfisch and Hans Zimmer. In the event, the pair's work here is in a more impressionistic, experimental, wall-of-sound mode than is customary from the Zimmer factory and, in the event, is extremely effective and mood-enhancing."

Todd McCarthy, The Hollywood Reporter 

BRAWL IN CELL BLOCK 99 - Jeff Herriott, S. Craig Zahler
"Zahler was on writing, directing and composing duties (creating the authentically ’70s-sounding funk and soul soundtrack cuts as well as the score) which must surely confirm him as one of the most exciting all-rounders to happen to American genre cinema in recent years. His first two films are such nasty, grungy fun, in fact, that the only worry is they’ll set too high (or too scuzzily low) a bar for the third to clear. But then we read that Zahler’s next project reunites most of this cast including Vaughn, adds a comeback-hungry but still controversial Mel Gibson into mix, is called [fans self] 'Dragged Across Concrete' and oh for God’s sake just take my money already."
Jessica Kiang, The Playlist 
"At over two hours, 'Brawl in Cell Block 99' could test the mayhem anticipation levels of more attention-starved exploitation fans. But the fact that Zahler marches to the beat of his own pummeling fist, going so far as to get the O’Jays and Butch Tavares to expressively croon his own ’70s-inspired soul compositions, is part of the low-down, nasty, self-satisfied magnetism of this two-fisted exercise."
Robert Abele, The Wrap
"You do not watch this film so much as gape at its' creators' flights of deranged inspiration. 'Weird' does not begin to cover the depth of its tough-guy eccentricities. The writer and director is S. Craig Zahler, the mind behind the horror-western 'Bone Tomahawk.' Working with cinematographer Benji Bakshi, he takes great pains to show you his actors' entire bodies during fight scenes. He also wrote the original R&B score, which is performed by the legendary Butch Tavares and the O'Jays. The movie makes a star of Vince Vaughn again by casting him as antihero Bradley Thomas, a skinhead drug dealer who must pummel and stomp two prisons' worth of inmates and guards in order to protect his kidnapped wife and daughter."
Simon Abrams,
"Without going the martial arts route, Zahler appears to tip his hat to hyperviolent Korean cinema as well as Indonesia's 'The Raid' movies in terms of the number of limbs snapped, though he keeps the actual body count relatively contained. The director also serves as co-composer with Jeff Herriott, and the smooth, ersatz-'70s soul songs they contribute -- recorded by vintage artists like The O'Jays and Butch Tavares, and heard mainly on car stereos throughout -- evoke blaxploitation pictures, even if that influence is not much in evidence elsewhere."
David Rooney, The Hollywood Reporter

BREATHE - Nitin Sawhney
"Andrew Garfield plays Robin Cavendish, a likable chap of no fortune and minor expectations who, through cricket stints and puppyish enthusiasm, wins the heart of posh Diana (Claire Foy) in England in 1959. Some twenty minutes into the film, amid marvelous Nairobi sunsets, Robin collapses. A doctor soon confirms: He’s contracted polio and will for the rest of his life be paralyzed from the neck down. For half a reel, Robin looks defeated in a hospital ward that suggests, with its grimly pumping life-saving machinery, Hemingway’s 'In Another Country.' But then Diana kindles Robin’s (and Serkis’) spirit: Like everything else in his life, this, too, can be a most corking enterprise, a chance to show his mettle. Step one: figuring out how to live outside a hospital while still dependent on a ventilator to work his lungs. It goes without saying that his exit from the reward is a sprightly escape sequence, scored like a heist, complete with a stern old administrator scoffing that he’ll be dead in two weeks."
Alan Schertuhl, The Village Voice 
"Produced by Cavendish’s own son Jonathan, the integrity of the project is beyond reproach, yet a slight sense of twee artifice creeps in from the introductory title card -- not “Based on a true story,” but, more coyly, 'What follows is true …,' as Nitin Sawhney’s thick, tinkly score strikes a matching note of whimsy. The opening scene, awash in cricket whites, straw boaters and cream teas, plays less as biographical scene-setting than as a halcyon ode to bygone England, as Cavendish meets young, comely Diana Blacker on a village green one swell summer’s day in 1957. William Nicholson’s script wastes no time setting a fairytale romance into motion: 'I just know this is it,' Diana muses minutes into proceedings, though we’ve scarcely got to know the two perfect lovers just yet. Before we know it they’re married, flown off to a picture-book vision of colonial Kenya, and slow-dancing to Bing Crosby’s 'True Love' under caramel African skies, though beyond their mutual wholesome attractiveness and good humor, neither character has come into focus."
Guy Lodge, Variety
"There is a fascinating true story about two exceptional people buried beneath all this sugary gloop. But in the hands of Serkis and Nicholson, it becomes a reductive parade of jolly japes and stiff upper lips, all drenched in the sonic syrup of Nitin Sawhney’s atypically mawkish score. Even when the grim reaper strikes in the final act, he arrives softened and sanitized and bathed in an incongruously warm glow. As we might expect when a film producer writes a big-screen love letter to his exceptional parents, 'Breathe' is a touchingly sweet portrait. But Cavendish is too close to his subjects, and the end result feels like a soppy vanity project."
Stephen Dalton, The Hollywood Reporter
CUCK - Room8
"Initially a caustic and somewhat programmatic checklist of alt-right obsessions, 'Cuck' becomes more tonally and dramatically interesting after it shifts gear midway through, when Ronnie's story becomes a lurid psychosexual nightmare reminiscent of Darren Aronofsky's 'Requiem for a Dream.' Having gained weight for the role, Sherman gives a generous and committed performance as an ungainly, shifty, socially awkward anti-hero. He also succeeds in wringing some sympathy for Ronnie as a painfully isolated misfit driven to extreme actions by tragic family circumstances and his own warped value system. L.A. duo Room8's chilly electronic score lends extra emotional depth to Lambert's timely depiction of impotent white male rage, while Tracey Ullman's gushingly romantic 1983 single 'They Don't Know' is used to pleasingly ironic effect over the end credits."
Stephen Dalton, The Hollywood Reporter 
THE FOREIGNER - Cliff Martinez

"Marconi’s screenplay makes a noble attempt at an exercise in futility: juggling three movies in one. The film has the assistance of brilliant, ancillary talent. Shot by David Tattersall ('Death Note'), the British talent knows where to place the camera amid chaotic gunfights. Additionally, the whole piece is scored by Cliff Martinez ('The Neon Demon'). Even when the dialogue is stiff, Martinez ups the power and punch of a scene through his symphony of sound. It has the feeling of propulsion, even when the movie seems to be running in place."
Sam Fragoso, The Wrap 
"But then the whole thing is bleak-looking, with its businesslike mise-en-scène, winter color palette, and alienating Cliff Martinez score. (It’s one of the more credible recent retro synth soundtracks, not unlike Martinez’s work on 'The Knick.') The blunt, airport-paperback script -- adapted by David Marconi ('Enemy Of The State') from a Stephen Leather novel with an even worse title, 'The Chinaman' -- scatters its subtexts. But it seems to have something (maybe not much, but still something) to say about the conflict between a modern, multicultural Britain and older, unresolved frictions. Here, after all, is a cat-and-mouse game between two former bombers who tried to become respectable, with daughters around the same age; we learn that Quan became a naturalized British citizen in the mid-1980s, just as Hennessy was starting to remake himself as a mainstream peace-maker. The duplicity of the characters -- Hennessy’s family, his much younger mistress, his old IRA buddies -- greases the plot. For his next film, Campbell should try tackling a Donald E. Westlake adaptation."
Ignatiy Vishnevetsky, The Onion AV Club
"It’s a scene that gets spontaneous applause because it offers a tiny reprieve from the unremitting portrait of depravity, misogyny and victimization. All this is heavily brought home by Rainer Klausmann’s gritty images and Kunz’s nauseating attic set plastered wall-to-wall with pictures torn from porn magazines -- sets so extraordinarily detailed you can smell them. F.M. Einhelt’s selection of repetitious, scratchy German pop music adds the finishing touch to the atmosphere, so thick it sometimes feels like overkill."
Deborah Young, The Hollywood Reporter
LOW TIDE - Brooke Blair, Will Blair
"Despite the inherent familiarity, the quietly observed 'Low Tide,' graced by a mournful, undulating score by composers Brooke Blair and Will Blair, nevertheless packs a genuine depth."
Michael Rechtshaffen, Los Angeles Times


"From a technical standpoint, ‘Mark Felt’ is fairly dry as well, with a certain lack of panache from a visual standpoint. However, if there’s one element that shines it’s the score from Daniel Pemberton, who delivers the stately brass you’d expect from a story set in Washington D.C., but smears the edges with static and pulsing electronics, providing the picture an insistent pulse that, dramatically, it never quite matches. If the directorial approach is bloodless, so too are the performances. Neeson stands ramrod straight and tall as Felt, and makes all the right moves that the script demands of his character -- nothing more, nothing less. Meanwhile, the supporting cast keeps all the moving parts of the story going as required, but also without much definition. The only moment the picture finds some color occurs when Bruce Greenwood enters the picture, playing a Time Magazine editor, who meets with Mark Felt and becomes one of the media partners who help the agent light a fire under the White House. Neeson and Greenwood are great together, sharing an easy chemistry in their brief time together that transmits Felt’s difficulty in breaking protocol more than any other moment in the film."
Kevin Jagernauth, The Playlist
"Landesman raises those questions in 'Mark Felt: The Man Who Brought Down the White House,' with Liam Neeson, stoic as Felt, and Diane Lane, brittle and broken as his troubled wife. In this version of the story, shot with old lenses for a vintage look and with a haunting, noir-ish score from Daniel Pemberton, Felt is literally a shadowy figure, most often in the dark. We see him in the bleak, institutional setting of the old FBI building, with its nondescript desks and nondescript staff, and in his home, trying to help his wife and find his daughter."
Nell Minow, 

"As Danny and his daughter sit at a piano and sing together in one of the most moving scenes that Baumbach has ever written: 'There’s always you, there’s always me, there’s always us.' That lyric alone might be enough to know that Baumbach hired Randy Newman for all of the film’s music."
David Ehrlich, IndieWire 

"Shot with the stoic confidence of a capable young director flexing his muscles, 'Super Dark Times' is visceral and gripping throughout, its probing compositions forcing you to peer deeper and deeper into the darkness. It’s frustrating to discover that there may not be all that much to see in the void, but the film’s oblique performances -- strung together by Ben Frost’s jangly score -- make it exceedingly difficult to stop squinting. Even as the story’s dramatic tension disappears amidst an an overload of sinister dream sequences, and the confused pathos that Phillips wrenches out of his characters begins to feel like a hollow excuse to play with brooding imagery and reframe an iconic shot from Lars von Trier’s 'Antichrist,' the movie still keeps you in its sway. And while the limp third act finds the most enervating way of reaching its enigmatic final shots, those last images resolve into a feeling that much of the movie is spent desperately trying to find: Innocence is always lost, that’s a fact. It’s what people allow to take its place that defines them."
David Ehrlich, IndieWire 
"Director Kevin Phillips drenches his first feature in a lot of romantic style -- the beatific pink glow of waning daylight as it bleeds through the cracks between trees, the lilting grandeur of ambient music slathered atop silhouetted images of boys on bikes. Hopping the nostalgia train that recently passed through Derry, Maine and Hawkins, Indiana, 'Super Dark Times' rewinds back to the 1990s, which means we get caller-I.D. boxes on cordless phones, Minesweeper on desktop computers, and Bill Clinton on tube televisions. Phillips supposedly chose this particular era not just for its cosmetic signifiers, but also to pinpoint a specific age of youth disillusionment, right before Columbine instilled a fear of homicidal tendencies bubbling to the surface of teenage psyches. The adults here are less hysterical but also more oblivious. The opening scene, which teases bloodshed to come, finds two police officers forced to kill a dying deer that’s leapt through a classroom window. They couldn’t stop the violence from happening; they can only clean up the mess."
A.A. Dowd, The Onion AV Club
"Strikingly shot, edited and scored, with convincing and vivid performances from a youthful cast, the picture loses its footing in the final stretch but should still take high rank among U.S. debuts of its ilk this year. Some enterprising distributor could plausibly give it a niche theatrical spin in the wake of what's likely to be a well-received North American premiere, wherever that turns out to be. The crux of the pic resides in tracing the rapidly shifting dynamics between individuals in their latter high-school years, exacerbated here by the bloodily extreme circumstances which upset more than one character's mental equilibrium. Their heightened senses, particularly Zach's, are conveyed by Born's lushly atmospheric widescreen images -- shot on digital using 35mm lenses -- of this unidentified, cozy, woodsy/suburban small town in the Hudson Valley, plus Yonaitis' generally fluent, sometimes jarring edits and composer Ben Frost's well-modulated score."
Neil Young, The Hollywood Reporter 


Screenings of older films, at the following L.A. movie theaters: AMPASAlamo DrafthouseAmerican Cinematheque: AeroAmerican Cinematheque: EgyptianArclightArena Cinelounge, LaemmleNew Beverly, Nuart, UCLA and Vista.   

October 18
FROM DUSK TILL DAWN (Graeme Revell) [New Beverly]
HELLRAISER III: HELL ON EARTH (Randy Miller) [New Beverly]
THE HILLS HAVE EYES (Don Peake) [Vista]
THE KILLER (Lowell Lo), HARD BOILED (Michael Gibbs) [Cinematheque: Aero]
MONA LISA (Michael Kamen), THE LONG GOOD FRIDAY (Francis Monkman) [Laemmle Ahyra Fine Arts]

October 19
BLACKBEARD'S GHOST (Robert F. Brunner) [New Beverly]
BULLET IN THE HEAD (Sherman Chow) [Cinematheque: Aero]
FACE/OFF (John Powell), HARD TARGET (Graeme Revell) [Cinematheque: Aero]
A PRIVATE FUNCTION (John Du Prez) [Laemmle Ahyra Fine Arts]
WITHNAIL & I (David Dundas, Rick Wentworth), HOW TO GET AHEAD IN ADVERTISING (David Dundas, Rick Wentworth) [Laemmle Ahyra Fine Arts]

October 20
BLACKBEARD'S GHOST (Robert F. Brunner) [New Beverly]
BUNUEL IN THE LABYRINTH OF TURTLES (Arturo Cardelas) [Cinematheque: Egyptian]
THE DARK CRYSTAL (Trevor Jones) [Alamo Drafthouse]
THE HOUSEMAID (Sang-gi Han) [Alamo Drafthouse]
NUNS ON THE RUN (Hidden Faces) [Laemmle Ahyra Fine Arts]
THE SEDUCTION OF MIMI (Piero Piccioni), LOVE & ANARCHY (Nino Rota, Carlo Savina) [Cinematheque: Aero]
TERMINATOR 2: JUDGMENT DAY (Brad Fiedel) [Alamo Drafthouse]
WATER (Mike Moran) [Laemmle Ahyra Fine Arts]

October 21
THE BORN LOSERS (Mike Curb), BILLY JACK (Mundell Lowe) [New Beverly]
DRACULA [Arclight Hollywood]
THE MUMMY (Jerry Goldsmith) [Alamo Drafthouse]
THE PEOPLE UNDER THE STAIRS (Don Peake, Graeme Revell) [New Beverly]
SOUL OF THE DEMON (John Matteson) [Alamo Drafthouse]

October 22
ARSENIC AND OLD LACE (Max Steiner) [Cinematheque: Aero]
THE BORN LOSERS (Mike Curb), BILLY JACK (Mundell Lowe) [New Beverly]
FRIDAY THE 13TH (Harry Manfredini) [Arclight Hollywood]
FRIDAY THE 13TH (Harry Manfredini) [Arclight Sherman Oaks]
FRIGHT NIGHT (Brad Fiedel) [Alamo Drafthouse]

October 23
EVIL DEAD 2 (Joseph LoDuca) [Arclight Culver City]
EYES WITHOUT A FACE (Maurice Jarre) [New Beverly]
PETEY WHEATSTRAW (Nat Dove) [Alamo Drafthouse]
THE TRIAL OF BILLY JACK (Elmer Bernstein) [New Beverly]

October 24
THE NATURAL (Randy Newman) [Laemmle Royal]
SCARY MOVIE (David Kitay) [Alamo Drafthouse]
SWIMMING POOL (Philippe Rombi), 8 WOMEN (Krishna Levy) [Cinematheque: Aero]
THE TRIAL OF BILLY JACK (Elmer Bernstein) [New Beverly] 

October 25
THE FEARLESS VAMPIRE KILLERS (Christopher Komeda) [Arena CineLounge]
GRINDHOUSE (Robert Rodriguez, Graeme Revell) [New Beverly]
HALLOWEEN H20 (John Ottman) [New Beverly]
HORROR OF DRACULA (James Bernard), THE TIME MACHINE (Russell Garcia) [Cinematheque: Egyptian]
PRINCE OF DARKNESS (John Carpenter, Alan Howarth) [Vista]
THE ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW (Richard O'Brien, Richard Hartley) [Nuart]
SEVEN BEAUTIES (Enzo Jannacci), SWEPT AWAY (Piero Piccioni) [Cinematheque: Aero]

October 26
THE CRAFT (Graeme Revell) [Alamo Drafthouse]
CRITTERS (David Newman), HALLOWEEN II (John Carpenter, Alan Howarth), LISA AND THE DEVIL (Carlo Savina), RUBY (Don Ellis), NIGHT WARNING (Bruce Langhorne), DEMONOID: MESSENGER OF DEATH (Richard Gillis), THE CRAZIES (Bruce Roberts) [Cinematheque: Aero]
THE FEARLESS VAMPIRE KILLERS (Christopher Komeda) [Arena CineLounge]
SATANTANGO (Mihaly Vig) [Cinematheque: Egyptian]

October 27
CASPER (James Horner) [UCLA]
DOLEMITE (Arthur Wright) [Alamo Drafthouse]
THE FEARLESS VAMPIRE KILLERS (Christopher Komeda) [Arena CineLounge]
VALLEY OF THE DOLLS (John Williams, Andre Previn), THE FEARLESS VAMPIRE KILLERS (Christopher Komeda), THE WRECKING CREW (Hugo Montenegro) [New Beverly]
VIRTUE, TWENTIETH CENTURY [Cinematheque: Egyptian]


Heard: Arrow: Season 2 (Neely), Thriller vol. 1 (Goldsmith), A Palace Upon the Ruins (Shore), The Circle (Elfman)

Read: Chances Are, by Richard Russo

Seen: Parasite [2019]; Ad Astra; Jexi; Dolemite Is My Name; The Cotton Club ["Encore" edition]; Gemini Man; The King [2019]; The Addams Family [2019]

Watched: After the Thin Man, The Haunting of Hill House ("Witness Marks," "Screaming Meemies," "Silence Lay Steadily"), Rome ("Utica"), The State ("Episode 3")

First, here are very early predictions for this year's Original Score Oscar nominations:

JOKER - Hildur Guonadottir
LITTLE WOMEN - Alexandre Desplat
1917 - Thomas Newman

Second, I miss John Barry.

I know, I'm not the only one, but I was reminded how much I miss having brand new John Barry scores to enjoy while watching Francis Ford Coppola's new "Encore" cut of 1984's The Cotton Club. There isn't a huge amount of score in the film -- not surprisingly, since the film's authentically recreated period source music is one of its strongest assets -- but every time a Barry cue kicked in, I was filled with nostalgia for that thirty years of moviegoing, 1972 to 2002, when I could go to a movie theater and hear a brand new Barry score. I remember a similar feeling when I saw Scorsese's remake of Cape Fear -- not a great film, but hearing newly recorded Bernard Herrmann music emerge from theater speakers in state-of-the-art sound was something not to be missed.

I had thought going in that all Coppola had done was restore some cut musical numbers to his 1984 version, particularly Lonette McKee singing "Stormy Weather," but I did notice that a moment I'd remembered from Fred Gwynne's intro seemed to be gone, and it was only later that I read that Coppola had recut the entire film, specifically to create a greater narrative balance between the white characters, who dominated the story in the 1984 cut, and the black characters, who were originally given short shrift (an especially cruel irony, since as the film itself points out, the real Cotton Club was a place where the creme de la creme of black entertainers performed for a whites-only audience).

As it was in 1984, the film is still a hugely enjoyable mess, even in this longer, re-cut edition. Probably due to its difficult development and production history (the financing of the film famously led to a murder trial), the film lacks the structural confidence and visual elegance of Coppola's first two Godfather movies, and probably the biggest problem is the lack of emotional investment in any of the main characters. Richard Gere looks great in his era-appropriate pencil moustache, while Diane Lane and Lonette McKee look great period (it's weird to think this was only five-and-a-half years after Lane was the teen heroine of A Little Romance), but Gere and Lane never make an involving couple, and the other male lead, Gregory Hines, dazzles with his song-and-dance scenes but his character spends the rest of his screen time either pestering McKee or betraying his own brother, making him overall even less likeable than Gere. The dancing is generally dazzling but Coppola's filming and cutting of these scenes is too often awkward, framing the bodies so the feet are cut off by the bottom of the frame or blocked by tables.

The film is ridiculously overstuffed with talented cast members, though some are not always seen to their best advantage -- Nicolas Cage is an amazing actor but never manages to be anything but irritating as Gere's hoodlum younger brother. Cage's weakness in the role comes in particular contrast to Laurence Fishburne as the Harlem gangster Bumpy Rhodes (presumably inspired by the real-life Bumpy Johnson) -- Fishburne is so effortlessly charismatic in the part (which I suspect has been beefed up in the new cut, and deservedly so) that his later stardom is no surprise.  It's a little bit jarring to see James Remar, James Russo and Ed O'Ross in the same movie, since both Russo and O'Ross are actors I tend to confuse with Remar (who plays the psychotic gangster Dutch Schultz, who commits a shockingly gruesome murder early in the film, a sequence so gory that it probably didn't help the film's popularity with audiences expecting a romantic song-and-dance film). I was especially surprised to recognize Mario Van Peebles in a wordless role as one of the Club's dancers.

Part of the bittersweet pleasure from the film comes from seeing so many actors who have since passed on, including Bob Hoskins, Fred Gwynne (one late scene between the pair is the non-dancing highlight of the film), Gregory Hines, Julian Beck (even creepier here than he was in Poltergeist II), and John P. Ryan.

There were two departed performers I was especially delighted to see. I'd forgotten that Gwen Verdon played the mother of Gere and Cage so her appearance was an unexpected joy, especially in her final moments when she dances with a young girl at a train station. I'm not sure if I even knew who Woody Strode was back in 1984, but recognizing him here as the Cotton Club's doorman was an extra thrill.

I had originally planned to include Allen Garfield (aka Allen Goorwitz) in this list, only to discover that Garfield is retired after a severe stroke but still with us. Other familiar actors who fill the cast include Jennifer Gray (as Cage's wife), Lisa Jane Persky (a scene-stealing performance as Schultz' unhappy wife), Joe D'Alessandro, and a surprisingly dapper Tom Waits as the Club's MC. I didn't spot Diane Venora in her supporting role as Gloria Swanson -- I suspect most if not all of her part may have been sacrificed in the re-cut. 

Right after seeing the film I happened to listen to Intrada's new CD-set of Barry's Howard the Duck, and the pairing reinforced the randomness of a film composer's career. Between these two famous box-office flops was the year 1985, where Barry had one of the most commercially successful periods of his life -- the hit Bond movie A View to a Kill (with a Barry-penned song that was the only Bond song to reach #1 on the Billboard chart), followed by the hit thriller Jagged Edge, followed by a fourth Oscar for Best Picture winner Out of Africa.

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Today in Film Score History:
September 28
Evan Lurie born (1954)
Geoff Zanelli born (1974)
Jay Chattaway records his score for the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode “Relics” (1992)
Jerry Goldsmith begins recording his score for The Lonely Guy (1983)
John Williams begins recording his score to Home Alone 2: Lost in New York (1992)
John Williams records his score for the Lost in Space episode "The Hungry Sea" (1965)
Laurent Petitgand born (1959)
Leith Stevens begins recording his score for The Scarlet Hour (1955)
Miles Davis died (1991)
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