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Comments about the soundtrack for Minority Report (John Williams)

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Re: MR sounds like a mixture of the latest JW scores...and nobody cares!
• Posted by: juju-bean
• Date: Tuesday, June 18, 2002, at 10:06 p.m.
• IP Address:
• In Response to: Re: MR sounds like a mixture of the latest JW ... (fontinau)

> I can say it because it is true. The opening violin piece in Schidler's
> List, and the theme that pervades the Harry Potter (including Hedwig's
> Theme) may use different rythm and orchestration, but even one hearing of
> the two themes will show that, note-for-note, they are practically
> identical. This wouldn't be too big an issue if it weren't for Williams
> beating us over the head with said thme every two minutes during the
> entire Harry Potter soundtrack.

Practically identical? You're wrong. From the second note they are different; Harry Potter descends a major 3rd while Schindlers a perfect fifth. If you are saying because of the directions in which the melodies are moving that they are "practically identical" then there are probably hundreds of other melodies that are also "practically identical." There is similarity because of the progression from a i chord to, what I believe to be, the VI chord, but big deal. Do you know how many songs have been written with a minor i chord going to the VI chord? From there Harry Potter continues to a diminished chord that sounds like the leading tone or something. The differences are very obvious there are tritone's and chromaticism in Harry Potter which are definately not present in the Schindler melody.

I think that people are getting way out of hand saying how many things are plagiarized or "rip-offs" in composers' film music. Most the time they are just similar... Now, I believe there are certain cases, where composers - *cough, cough* horner - completely lift themes that have already been written and insert them into their "original" score, this I don't like.

I think you, and others, should think more conservatively. From the standard people on these boardsclaim things are identical or plagiarized one would get the impression that total atonality and serialism would be the only option for these poor composers. Not that I don't like that style, but it would really be a shame to be missing out on such themes that are so pleasing to the ear. Don't you think?

So, in conclusion, Schindler's theme, regardless of what people say, is not "identical" to Harry Potter. They might have similarities in progression and melodic direction, but you're going out on a limb to say its self-plagiarism. You are restricting the composer too much, at least in my opinion.

PS: I have the Jurassic Park score and Episode I. I'll have to give it a listen, but I doubt the similarities are that consistant or important. Honestly, I have never seen Amistad, and I don't own the score, so I can't make a sound judgement on that and the Patriot. *shrugs*

DISCLAIMER: my opinions are just that: my opinions. And I have the right to be totally wrong.

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