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Comments about the soundtrack for The Golden Compass (Alexandre Desplat)

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• Posted by: Sam   <Send E-Mail>
• Date: Sunday, February 10, 2008, at 11:30 a.m.
• IP Address:
Message Edited: Sunday, February 10, 2008, at 4:48 p.m.

First, I must congratulate Christian for his in-depth review. I don't always agree with his reviews, but here I think he's absolutely right about the score's strengths and weaknesses. And that is interesting news that they actually filmed scenes depicing the ending of the book but didn't use them in the film. This explains why the end-credits song, "Lyra," contains the lyric, "two worlds collide around her," which is EXACTLY what happens at the end of the book, but not in the film.

I saw the film before reading the book, but, even then, noticed something wrong with the ending. It violates the cardinal rule of screenwriting, "show, don't tell." We're told, second-hand, what happend to Lord Asriel, instead of being given a climactic scene with him. And Lyra's speech, essentially outlining what she's going to do in the sequels, though it's good and heroic, belongs in a stage play, not in a movie.

Not so in the book, the final scenes of which are nothing less than astounding. The usual excuse that a movie has to be different from a book to be more cinematic, doesn't play here, for this is a case where the book's ending is WAY more cinematic than the way the film ends. So, what I want to know is, what in all the parallel universes was director Chris Wietz thinking, when he chopped it off?! Or was the cut forced upon him by studio pressure? Plus, how does he intend to film the sequels (if he ever gets to film them, which is now doubutful), for "en't" their plots entirely dependent on the climactic event in "The Golden Compass"?

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