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Comments about the soundtrack for The Lord of the Rings (1978) (Leonard Rosenman)

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A few thoughts
• Posted by: franz_conrad   <Send E-Mail>
• Date: Thursday, April 26, 2007, at 8:37 p.m.
• IP Address: 137.111.57.136
• Now Playing: NP: Aboute a monde au gauche (Krishna Levy)

Firstly, ironic that a two star rating for one of Leonard Rosenman's best scores should follow a two star rating for one of Elliot Goldenthal's best scores. Considered anti-idiosyncratic treatises certainly come in packs at Filmtracks! Or maybe it's just considered composition that runs afoul of this reviewer - considering the recent detraction of Desplat's superb Painted Veil and Queen scores here, we might be onto something there.

Secondly, it's especially ironic that this score is attacked for its recording quality, when that seemed to be a consistent point of weakness highlighted by this reviewer's contemporary articles on Howard Shore's LOTR scores on Reprise Records. (Now forgotten?)

Thirdly, the fanfare Rosenman wrote seems a lot closer to the tradition of themes for grand world war two films than John Williams' thematic writing. And while that's not a perfect analogy to the war in Tolkien's world - it's not inappropriate. And I think Rosenman makes it work - even if it is a tad ticker-tape in the final scenes. (Can we blame him for trying to make the end of the film feel like the end of the film instead of what it was - the halfway mark?)

Fourthly, and this is just a matter of personal opinion. I love both this and Howard Shore's LOTR scores - both arouse strong feeling in me, and I admire the composition of both. I don't think appreciation of one has to go hand in hand with detracting the other, but it seems the impression Shore made is like a crutch to this reviewer in considering the music from another composer for another film in another decade. So little is actually said about the MUSIC of the Rosenman score beyond the barest accounting for idiom and mood. What about the music he writes?

Ok - rant endeth.






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