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Re: Top 200 Scores of the Century - #95 - 81
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• Posted by: Olivia D.   <Send E-Mail>
• Date: Friday, May 27, 2022, at 12:29 p.m.
• IP Address:
• In Response to: Top 200 Scores of the Century - #95 - 81 (Riley KZ)
• Now Playing: The 'Burbs

> And here we go with more of this stuff cause it's Friday dammit, let's

> --------

> #95 - The Way Back by Rob Simonsen

> My #1 pick of 2020 that probably got more than one raised eyebrow. I still
> maintain itís a gorgeous, heart-breaking chamber score with a fantastic
> monothematic core, usually played on solo pianoís or backed up with
> clapping percussion. None of which could have been great, true, but it
> works wonders in the film, is a great relaxing album listen, and a
> surprisingly honest musical representation of alcoholism. For all the
> (misguided in my opinion) praise he got for Ghostbusters, I really hope
> someday this finds the acclaim it should have got.

> Best Cue:

> #94 - Changing Lanes by David Arnold

> If I ever met Mr. Arnold, Iíd love to tell him the first and still my
> favorite score of his I bought was Changing Lanes, and watch his reaction.
> Heíd probably call me a wanker and walk away. But Iím being genuine Ė I
> love this score as much as I love the movie, and thatís a lot (hell, I
> literally just rewatched it again two nights ago). Critics at the time
> RAVAGED it, calling it electronic murky muck. And yes, itís almost
> completely synthetic music. Yet in a scratchy, chaotic, mesmerizing way
> that sounds extremely different than the other droning crap it gets
> clumped in with. Plus, it repeatedly utilizes two different motifís; one
> hectic, one melancholy, so itís not just a bunch of electronic noise.
> Super underrated score.

> Best Cue:

> #93 - The Star Wars Disney Trilogy by John Williams

> Totally cheating by combining all of these suckers (and itís gonna happen
> more often soon), yet I think this is one that wonít get many complaints,
> because reallyÖ.how DOES one rank these three scores differently? Force
> Awakens introduced us to a whole bunch of awesome new themes (yes, even
> Reyís theme, Iíve changed my tune since 2015), Last Jedi elaborated and
> was even more epic, and then Rise of Skywalker mixed all that with a
> shitload of nostalgic returns to old Star Wars music. Movies range from
> mediocre to absolute dumpster fires but the music made it all worth it,
> and if I had to pick a favouriteÖI donít think I could. Like em all
> equally.

> Best Cue from FA:

> Best Cue from LJ:

> Best Cue from RS:

My only problem is with The Last Jedi and that's because John kinda spoiled me with all the great new themes that I was really disappointed that he only had ONE strong new theme, but I blame that on Rian Johnson although it has some really poignant statements of the brother/sister that saves it. However The Rise of Skywalker I love, I thought in Return of the Jedi that John gave a great musical send-off to Star Wars, but then he did it again, When he he stated the main title theme in the end credits I couldn't help but cry at him musically saying goodbye to a franchise he's been doing for more than half his life, its such a pity Abrams butchered it to pieces in the final cut because the greatest composer alive deserves more than that.

> #92 - The 25th Hour by Terence Blanchard

> Blanchard has done a lot of scores in the past couple decades, most of
> which arenít exactly my favourite stuff to listen to (except
> BlackKklansman and Da 5 Bloods, which grow on me with each listen). But
> hoooo boy, is The 25th Hour a winner, his career pinnacle by far for me.
> Opening with a powerhouse of a cue, the score ranges from melodic
> jazziness to tragic, melancholy underscore to overwhelming melodrama. Its
> one of those albums I keep telling people they gotta check out, and all
> too frequently I keep getting ignored. Stop that! Go listen to it!

> Best Cue:

> #91 - The Departed by Howard Shore

> One of my favourite movies for being so goddamned entertaining, The
> Departed is also my favourite non-LOTR Shore score. First reason Ė making
> half the score a guitar-infused tango, for a fuckiní Scorsese crime
> thriller of all things? Brilliant. Second reason Ė the cue below, which
> Iíve listened to probably 800 times since 2006. The suspense material,
> which is more electric-guitar underscore in the vein of some of his
> Cronenberg works, isnít as interesting, although it remains effective. And
> anytime The Departed picks up a guitar, its solid gold.

> Best Cue:

> #90 - Minority Report by John Williams

> What happens when you get Bernard Herrmann to score Blade Runner? Minority
> Report, thatís what. Maybe because of the darker, more obtuse nature of
> the score, it never received the acclaim that 98% other John Williams
> scores get (especially ones tied to Spielberg). And I just donít
> understand. He nails the mystery, the foreign futuristic aspect of the
> Pre-Cogís, the creepy stuff, the noir throwbacks, and the action material
> (Andertonís Great Escape is, for my money, JWís very best action cue. Yes,
> better than Battle on Hoth). A tougher score than usual from him, but at
> least in my books, one of his best.

> Best Cue:

> #89 - Real Steel by Danny Elfman

> One of the rare times in the 2010ís where I felt Elfman not only delivered
> a masterpiece worthy of comparison with his 80ís and 90ís faves, but also
> one that frankly didnít sound like any other Elfman score. For a
> relatively simple and silly movie, the music is just phenomenal, happily
> mixing gentle acoustics with light rock sensibilities and, in the final
> two cues, uplifting and goosebump-inducing music the likes of which donít
> happen nearly often enough.

> Best Cue:

> #88 - Eragon by Patrick Doyle

> Like most of Doyleís scores for some odd reason, I shrugged and rapidly
> moved on after my first listen of Eragon, only to return to it years later
> and go ďHoly shitballs this is good!Ē A rousing fantasy/adventure score
> that hits all the right notes (nyuk nyuk) and does it in a tight, concise
> album. Havenít seen the flick so not sure if thereís some major music
> missing, but I love the CD the way it is, and goddamn, that THEME, that
> awesome and memorable main theme. So good.

> Best Cue:

Bought this from a thrift store a while back, still haven't listened to it because of all the scores on Youtube I've been plowing through, though now you've made me want to give it a listen.

> #87 - Departures by Joe Hisaishi

> So this might be a weird opinion, but I think Hisaishiís best score isnít
> for a Miyazaki flick Ė its for this live action drama about a cellist
> playing music for funerals. As expected from the plot description, the
> cello is the hero here, and man does Hisaishi wring every ounce of beauty
> from that instrument. The primary theme, heard frequently both on cello,
> violins, and piano, is the composerís very best. An incredibly touching
> and moving score.

> Best Cue:

> #86 - The Incredible Hulk by Craig Armstrong

> Hulk seemed like such an odd project for the dramatic Scot, yet he blew me
> away with the work, particularly the action cues; Favela Chase is one of
> the strongest non-Bourne chase scene cues Iíve ever heard. He also wound
> up using a sound that became verrrrrrry (too) familiar after Inception,
> the ďhorn of doomĒ, but the way he works it into the Hulk theme and
> persona is exceptional. Probably my fave MCU score.

> Best Cue:

Its definitely my second favourite from Armstrong after Me Before You, adore the love theme and that he brings Joe Harnell's "Lonely Man Theme" back when pretty much any other composer wouldn't have shows that he was the best pick for it and that it was also the first intelligent superhero score since The Last Stand and way better than Elfman's Hulk score.

> #85 - Brokeback Mountain by Gustavo Santaolalla

> Hahahaha yes, yes, absolutely yes. Yíall can eat it, cause this score
> actually DID deserve itís Oscar (I wonít get into the Babel travesty
> though). WIthin context, itís a perfect accompaniment to the story and
> embodiment of forbidden, ruined love (Ang Lee played parts of it on set to
> get the actors in the mood). But out of contextÖI still love it. People
> bitched about it being under 15 minutes; well, itís not, and the 30 min
> bootleg has some gorgeous highlights (like Horse Love) that were missing
> from the commercial album. I honestly donít know how anyone can listen to
> The Wings, either separate or within the flick, and not get all misty.
> Sorry, folks Ė you missed the boat with this one. Go relisten and remedy
> this problem immediately.

> Best Cue:

> #84 - Van Helsing by Alan Silvestri

> What a gloriously, unabashedly awesome score this is; perfect, really, for
> a gloriously, unabashedly silly movie. A monster mash-up from the guy that
> made The Mummy, Van Helsing never takes itself too seriously, whereas
> Silvestri created this bombastic, epic work that could play in any major
> action/horror spectacle. For all the awesome stuff to unpack here, the
> very best is the use of a fast-paced guitar (at least I think itís a
> guitar) in tracks like the one below.

> Best Cue:

Just another great example of why I love Alan Silvestri in Action mode, after Jerry Goldsmith he is probably the second best action music composer I've heard.

> #83 - Spider-Man 1 and 2 by Danny Elfman, Amazing Spider-Man by James
> Horner, and Amazing Spider-Man 2 by Hans Zimmer

> YeahÖthis is the biggest bag of cheating someone writing up a list could
> possibly conjure up. Especially since Iím not just saying ďall the
> SpideyísĒ, because I personally think Chris Youngís SM3 is overrated, and
> I donít particularly care for Giacchinoís MCU ones (and the less said
> about Pembertonís Spider-Verse, the better). But I canít decide which of
> these I like more, enjoying them all pretty equally. In terms of
> intelligence and deflty mixing swinging heroics with surprising emotion,
> Elfmanís Spidey 2 and Hornerís works are the best. But the first Spidey
> gave us all these great themes, and Zimmerís outing continually grows on
> me Ė itís ridiculous (like the Electro dub-step stuff), but thatís half
> the fun. Taken together, these four superhero scores represent some of the
> best music the genre has ever offered.

> Best Cue from SM:

> Best Cue from SM2:

> Best Cue from AMS:

> Best Cue from AMS2:

Horner's score is my favourite suprehero score period. Really emotional and I love the music for when Uncle Ben and Gwen Stacy's father dies, some the most touching and poignant music James ever wrote and "Rooftop Kiss" is sooo beautiful, just (for me) the best superhero score ever and Zimmer and team's one has grown on me too! Really love the love theme in that one and I also never really liked Giacchino's scores either, they are way too upbeat and I like my Spider-Man scores to be darkly romantic and Zimmer's one is. Without a doubt Pemberton's one is the worst, though.

> #82 - Gone In 60 Seconds by Trevor Rabin

> Heís baaaaack. This was one of my first ďdownload a score illegally from
> Kazaa cause I canít find it anywhere and keep getting outbid on eBayĒ
> experiences (and for you modern day kiddos Ė each track took about a week
> to download. We used to work hard for our piracy). Loved it then, love it
> even more now; itís not just industrial techno-noise like some critics
> complained at the time (youíre still wrong Jon!!!). Itís entertaining and
> actually quite clever in its stupidity, and I especially love the use of
> wordless female vocals mixed in with the action. Very short album (not
> even 30 mins long) so it ainít gonna eat up a bunch of your time.

> Best Cue:

> #81 - Carol by Carter Burwell

> This is one that has improved so much with every passing listen since it
> first came out. I heard it out of context first, thought it was pretty,
> but nothing special. Then I saw the flick, and then saw it again, and
> realized Burwell absolutely NAILED the mournful feeling of romantic
> regret, of a love that could have been but sadly couldnít continue. The
> melodies here are enchanting and I donít think Burwell ever used pianos in
> a better, more moving way. Not an uplifting or jovial listen by any means,
> but definitely my favourite work from the guy.

> Best Cue:

Definitely one of Carter's most beautiful scores along with Mildred Pierce.

> ---------

> Coming up: More Rabin, more Horner's, finally a Goldsmith, a Spanish TV
> score, and several that absolutely no one talks about which really bums me
> out.

Yay, Goldsmith at last.

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