Newest Major Reviews:.This Month's Most Popular Reviews: Best-Selling Albums:
. 1. Transformers: Last Knight
2. Cars 3
3. The Mummy
4. Wonder Woman
5. POTC: Dead Men Tell No Tales
. . 1. Star Wars: Force Awakens
2. E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial
3. Titanic
4. Avatar
5. Nineteen Eighty-Four
6. Gladiator
7. Star Wars: A New Hope
8. Animal Farm
9. LOTR: Fellowship of the Ring
10. Harry Potter: Sorcerer's Stone
. . 1. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
2. Fantastic Beasts/Find Them
3. Willow
4. The Ghost and the Darkness
5. An American Tail
Filmtracks On Cue


On Cue for March, 2005:





3/31/05 - "O": (Jeff Danna) --All New Review-- "Perhaps an ill-fated endeavor, Tim Blake Nelson's directorial experiment with this modern adaptation of William Shakespeare's "Othello" is better known for its relationship with a more tragic real-life event rather than its own tragic storyline. Nelson (who most people will recognize as the idiotic Delmar character in O Brother, Where Art Thou?) recreated the tragic Shakespearian play in a modern, private high school drama, with the black title character existing as a basketball star who falls in love with the "whitest" girl in the school (the pseudo Desdemona) and draws the jealousy of the basketball coach's son (the pseudo Iago). That alone leads us down a predictable path of self-destruction and, for those who are ignorant of the Shakespeare story, a disastrously disappointing ending. The problem with the picture was that the Othello character executes his vengeance by committing an act of mass school violence devised by the Iago equivalent. With the film's production finished in 1998..." ** Read the entire review.

3/28/05 - Speed: (Mark Mancina) --All New Review-- "Another would-be composer branching off from the rock group "Yes," keyboardist Mark Mancina debuted with his first major solo film score with Speed. The action blockbuster was a financial champion of the 1994 summer season, spurring the careers of its two young lead actors and inspiring a sequel. Mancina would eventually be recognized as one of the more successful artists to walk through the doors of Hans Zimmer's Media Ventures composing house, and part of that success is due to Mancina's head start on many of the other MV artists. Mancina was heavily influenced by Zimmer's styles of combining synthesizers and orchestras, and he would continue to develop ideas that cross between both genres. His score for Speed would be effective in its capacity to generate excitement (and it was therefore a strong piece of music for the film), but it is even more of an interesting case study of how the Media Ventures sound got started. Hans Zimmer had already established his dominance over the synthetic realm..." *** Read the entire review.

3/25/05 - Rollerball (2001): (Eric Serra) --All New Review-- "Fascination with the rollerball game as a concept has never really diminished since Norman Jewison's 1975 film interpretation of William Harrison's original story. If the term "cult" was to ever be attached to the ultimate, fictionally conceived game, then Rollerball would be an obvious choice. Still, for some reason, MGM and director John McTiernan, a talent who has produced both fantastic successes and monumental failures on the big screen, decided that a modern version of Rollerball needed to be made in 2001. The film would pour its budget into its art direction, glitzing everything up with lavish sets that were drenched in neon colors. Add to that the primal noises of the violent game, as well as an awkward modernization of the game's actual figure-8 setup, and you get eye and ear candy at every turn. McTiernan, as expected, also took the adult nature of the game to its furthest, with considerable gore and nudity (hey, why not?) featured throughout the picture as well...." * Read the entire review.

3/21/05 - Lauras Stern (Laura's Star): (Hans Zimmer/Nick Glennie-Smith/Henning Lohner) --All New Review-- "Slipping under the radar for most American film score collectors in 2004 was Lauras Stern, a German feature animation scored by top-name composers. For Europeans, the story of Laura's Star is well known; based on the wildly popular children's book of the same name by author Klaus Baumgart, the lovable tale follows the tender emotional journey of seven-year-old Laura as she adapts to her family's move to the big city. Missing her garden and friends she left behind in the countryside, Laura becomes a loner until one day a star falls injured out of the sky. Communicating through its magical ability to make her stuffed animals talk, the star teaches the girl how to fly while she, in turn, helps mend its injuries. In the end, of course, the star has to go back to the heavens, but the good cheer is a decent diversion for young children in the audience. While the popularity of Baumgart's book could very well have enticed the composers of the former Media Ventures group to flock to Lauras Stern..." **** Read the entire review.

3/17/05 - The Funhouse: (John Beal) --All New Review-- "In the horror boom of the early 1980's, the concept of non-bloody horror film --one that uses ambience and calculated jolts of action to scare audiences-- became popular with a younger generation of viewers. Despite the introduction of slasher films at about the same time (led by the Friday the 13th series), director Tobe Hooper would take the long awaited concept of carnival horror to new heights one year before he would claim his own fame for Steven Spielberg's Poltergeist. As funny as it may seem when thinking back on that period of time, crazy carnival movies with homicidal monsters within wasn't necessarily the same recipe for stupidity that it is today. In fact, Universal Studios commissioned then-anonymous author Dean Koontz to write a novelization based on the screenplay for release before the actual film hit the theatres. With over a million copies of The Funhouse sold in bookstores before the release date, the appeal of the film was well established...." **** Read the entire review.

3/9/05 - Star Wars: Return of the Jedi: (John Williams) --Updated, Expanded Review-- "By the time Return of the Jedi opened in theatres in 1983, seven out of the top ten grossing films of all time featured a John Williams score. Since impressing the world once again with The Empire Strikes Back, Williams had written the classics Raiders of the Lost Ark and E.T. in successive years, with the latter earning Williams his fourth Academy Award. As a film, Return of the Jedi would ride the wave of Star Wars mania to its epic conclusion, marginally passing The Empire Strikes Back in gross profits but failing to garner the same astonishing record-setting success in audiences' and critics' books as its predecessors. From 1983 through today, fans of the series continue to argue that the music for Lucas' famed universe never got better than The Empire Strikes Back. Indeed, Williams had presented himself a significant challenge by producing a score for the first sequel that eclipsed the original classic. If the standard of excellence for Return of the Jedi were to be raised any higher..." ***** Read the entire review.

3/7/05 - Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back: (John Williams) --Updated, Expanded Review-- "With John Williams having firmly established himself as "the maestro" with his efforts of the late 1970's, The Empire Strikes Back came at the heart of Williams most product time of his career. Within six years, fans would be treated to everything from Star Wars and Superman to Raiders of the Lost Ark, E.T., and Return of the Jedi, and yet, even during that incredible time, some collectors of Williams maintain that The Empire Strikes Back is the finest score of the lot. Other debates exist about The Empire Strikes Back as the best of the classic Star Wars trilogy scores, to which you'd probably get less resistance if you argue on its behalf. Following Star Wars was no easy task; the film had set all world box office records and the LP record album had sold over 4 million copies... easily the top selling score of all time. This concerned Williams, for he wished to maintain the Wagnerian approach..." ***** Read the entire review.

3/5/05 - Star Wars: A New Hope: (John Williams) --Updated, Expanded Review-- "No single orchestral score has had more of an influence on the history of movies and its film music element than the original Star Wars. At a time when the Silver Age of film music had emphasized smaller orchestras and pop style genres of music in film, it was feared by long-time film score collectors that the glory days of Ben-Hur and Lawrence of Arabia had passed. Ironically, composer John Williams had been a part of that modernizing trend of music for films when he, in the first ten years of his career, was known as "Johnny Williams" and was well respected for his jazz and musical works. But in the 1970's, Williams began the film score renaissance back in the direction of the large orchestras and sweeping themes. His disaster scores of the early 70's often combined his orchestral and pop influences together, as heard popularly in The Towering Inferno and The Poseidon Adventure, and in 1975, Williams' Jaws won him his first dramatic score Oscar..." ***** Read the entire review.

3/1/05 - Irritated by the Academy Awards? Filmtracks announces the 2004 Fan Vote, your chance to elect the best CD release, composer, and "score as heard in a film" from last year. After appearing as a 'Theme of the Month' from 1997-2001, the voting booth returns to its original 1996 home on the 'Cool Stuff' page, with rules similar to the booths that you used when they were a 'Theme of the Month.' You can vote once per week (but no more than four times total) from a unique server address from now until the booth is scheduled to close on March 31st. All votes are filtered by both the server and a real person, ensuring accurate and reliable results. Vote now and view the daily-updated results!






Page created 4/6/05, updated 4/7/05. Version 2.1 (Filmtracks Publishing). Copyright © 2005, Christian Clemmensen. All rights reserved. "Real Audio" logo and .ra are Copyright © 1996, Real Audio (www.realaudio.com). "Academy Awards" and the Oscar statue are ® AMPAS, 1996.