March Means More Film Music

Goodbye, chilly February, and may your gloomy weather return to the north pole where it belongs!

Of course, there’s still plenty of winter left in the coming weeks, and undoubtedly more road-clogging, evil white stuff on the way, but Torontonians aren’t yet willing to call in the army so hundreds of cadets can remove ice and a frozen doggie doodles from the sidewalks.

On the good side: February wasn’t that cold, and it had far more direct sunlight than ugly January, but the heavy snowfall ensured headaches and migraines rendered many into dizzified zombies for a few hours or days, depending on severity.

The latest DVD reviews include an excellent portrait of the late, great Toru Takemitsu, one of the Japan’s best-known film and concert composers. Rising Sun is probably the main film that introduced the composer to Western audiences, followed by his eerie score for Akira Kurosawa’s Ran. Charlotte Zwerin’s documentary gives an excellent sampling of music, interviews and tributes to the composer, filmed two years prior to Takemitsu’s death in 1996.

The last of four documentaries in the Music for the Movies series, Toru Takemitsu is available from Kultur, alongside volumes on Georges Delerue, Bernard Herrmann, and The Hollywood Sound. My review for Music from the Movies is HERE, and also includes an assessment of Criterion’s new 4-disc Last Emperor set, plus some notes on Warner Bros.’ recent Oscar cartoon shorts collection that features isolated music scores.

In following through with soundtracks, we’ve also got reviews of Nicholas Dodd’s Treasure Island / L'Île au(x) trésor(s) (2007) and Carlo Giacco’s Like Minds (aka Murderous Intent) MovieScore Media, plus John Cameron’s After… (2006) via Film Music Downloads. (We’ll have some follow-up material to After… and its theme of urban spelunking shortly.)

Also added is a review of the latest CD from Switzerland’s Fin de Siècle Media that gathers three scores by Ennio Morricone just at the cusp of his ‘bonkers’ period – the year 1969, when he scored 25 film and TV productions.

(I call it bonkers, although one could substitute “prolific,” “caffeine-induced” or “medically inappropriate” since Morricone’s exhaustive output didn’t exactly waver the following year.)

Although it has no formal ‘collection of’ name, the CD contains music from Teorema / Theorem (1968), La stagione dei sensi / Season of the Senses (1969), and Vergogna schifosi / Dirty Angels (1969), of which the first, directed by Pier Paolo Pasolini, is available on DVD, and the other two are nowhere to be found as Region 1 DVDs, making this CD for many the only clue to the films’ style and dramatic tone.

We’ll have a film review and longer review of Fin de Siècle Media’s La morte ha fatto l’uovo / Death Laid an Egg (1972) after my CD review runs in Rue Morgue’s March issue, but coming soon are film and CD reviews for Rivelazioni di un maniaco sessuale al capo della squadra mobile / aka Revelations of a Sex Maniac to the Head of the Criminal Investigation Division / aka Confessions of a Sex Maniac (1972).

One day someone will write not a textbook treatise, but a two-sentence statement on why all gialli had to be branded with convoluted names.

In the meantime, imagine if the practice had been applied to comedies: Tales of a Big-Headed Man Estranged From His Stepmother, Large Breasted Daughter With A Flippant Desire To Eat Frozen Yogurt in Winter, A Fall From The Banana Peel Bruises the Tushie, Flatulence Makes the Divorcee Very Unstable, or Love Rolls Like Pom-Pom of Cabbage.



Visit’s Main Page HERE!
Technorati Tags: DVD Reviews


Copyright © mondomark