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Comments about the soundtrack for The Dark Knight Rises (Hans Zimmer/Various)

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Re: The Last Straw
• Posted by: B. Ross   <Send E-Mail>
• Date: Tuesday, July 17, 2012, at 2:46 a.m.
• IP Address:
• In Response to: The Last Straw (Miles)
• Now Playing: Einstein on the Beach (Philip Glass)

> Dear Mr. Clemmensen:

> As a film music aficionado, I have very few sources to rely on for updates
> and recommendations. I have vistied your site and others regularly, and
> probably will continue to in the future. For those times I have disagreed
> with what you or other reviewers have written, I have kept my thoughts to
> myself, recognizing your opinions as just that--opinions. However, this
> review has compelled me to drop my two cents in and offer up some defense
> of The Dark Knight Saga's music. And before you write me off as a lunatic
> "fanboy," allow me to say that I also own (and greatly enjoy)
> James Horner's "Spider-Man" score.

> I do not believe that the music for this trilogy will ever truly eclipse,
> for example, John Williams' "Superman" anthem, but I think that
> this deserves more consideration beyond
> "it-is-a-superhero-film-therefore-it-must-be-scored-like-this."
> Zimmer's music does not soar as Horner's or Williams' does, but I feel
> that it does speak to a more visceral aspect of the listener's spirit. It
> embodies Batman's single-minded commitment to justice rather than
> "duality." Moreover, a theme need not be "complex" in
> order to have worth--The Joker's wailing strings, Bane's chant and, not
> least, Catwoman's leitmotif, do an admirable job at encompassing the
> elemental nature of their characters. Zimmer's music for these films may
> not be great art, but it is very effective at communicating with the
> listener on a primal level. The driving rhythms of "Imagine the
> Fire," for instance, insinuate themselves into the psyche during that
> track's runtime, pulling them to their feet and saying "Listen! Feel
> the desperation of the moment!"

> Consider also the film for which the score was written.
> "Batman," and "The Avengers," and "The Amazing
> Spider-Man" are progressively more "realisitc" in their
> tone, but their balletic action sequences and fantastic technology still
> remind viewers of their comic-book origins. Nolan eschewed this approach
> for his trilogy, trying to make the universe he created as gritty and as
> grounded in the real world as possible. I do not think that the music for
> films which take this approach ought to hit the listener over the head
> with its "comic-bookiness" as Elfman's did in 1989, or Horner's
> did a month prior. This is not a bad thing, mind you--just a tonally
> inappropriate one for these particular films. Perhaps Zimmer has become
> complacent, as you say, but I hold hope that a respite from The Dark
> Knight films will allow him to provide "Man of Steel" with a
> score which suits its tone and approach, just as he has here.

> Now that I have politely stated my case, I want to make something else
> clear to you: just because you are one of the only film music sources I
> can rely upon does not mean that I like you. Jon Broxton, despite my not
> agreeing with all of his judgements, is at least able to clearly and
> honestly state what he likes and dislikes about a score without making
> himself seem any better than his reader. You, on the other hand,
> continually present yourself as a supreme exemplar of taste and wit,
> dispensing such bons mots as "Fact: our population is hopelessly
> stupid" to the unenlightened around you. Someone likes this score?
> Then it cannot possibly through any merit of its own--they must be a
> "fanboy," blinded by hype and their own idiocy. The idea that
> Nolan could praise Zimmer is just incomprehensible to "those who
> recognize" that Zimmer just doesn't "deserve" acclaim. But
> of course you recognize it, because you are just so much smarter and more
> educated than the rest of us. A fellow film music lover you may be, but
> your insufferably pronunciamento tone, your bellyaching about how a score
> you dislike should have been done, your near-constant unnecessary
> injection of political and social musings into your writings, and
> especially your elitist smugness disguised as "wit" endear you
> to me not at all. Continue reviewing, but know that at least one person
> here sees you for you are: an egotistical, narrow-minded, smug,
> overbearing, abrasive, smarmy, pretentious, smug, controlling,
> over-biased, sanctimonous, smug, elitist IDIOT.

> Have a lovely evening!

Yeah... I think you've just out-douched and out-snobbed anything Clemmensen has ever said in that final, vapid sentence with which you've left us. I'm happy we're not reading your reviews... that would be miserable.

Comments in this Thread:     Expand >>
  • The Last Straw  (4639 views)
       Miles - Monday, July 16, 2012, at 11:13 p.m.
    •    Re: The Last Straw  (4233 views)
         Jack - Thursday, July 19, 2012, at 6:05 p.m.
    •    Re: The Last Straw  (4147 views)
         Solaris - Tuesday, July 17, 2012, at 3:30 a.m.
    •      Re: The Last Straw  (4166 views)    We're Here
         B. Ross - Tuesday, July 17, 2012, at 2:46 a.m.

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