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By Royal S. Brown

Because the days of silent movies, song has been necessary to the cinematic event, serving, variously, to allay audiences' fears of the darkish and to intensify a film's emotional effect. but audience are usually blind to its presence. during this daring, insightful e-book, movie and tune student and critic Royal S. Brown invitations readers not just to "hear" the movie ranking, yet to appreciate it with regards to what they "see."Unlike past books, which provided historic, technical, and sociopolitical analyses, Overtones and Undertones attracts on movie, song, and narrative idea to supply the 1st accomplished aesthetics of movie tune. concentrating on how the film/score interplay impacts our reaction to cinematic events, Brown strains the background of movie track from its beginnings, overlaying either American and eu cinema. on the middle of his publication are shut readings of a number of of the easiest film/score interactions, together with Psycho, Laura, the ocean Hawk, Double Indemnity, and Pierrot le Fou. In revealing interviews with Bernard Herrmann, Mikl?s R?sza, Henry Mancini, and others, Brown additionally permits the composers to talk for themselves. a whole discography and bibliography finish the amount.

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Since the primary goal of this book is to examine what film music does best, rather than the multitude of sins committed in its name, the following chapters will be mainly concerned with three types of film scores: a) those that interact with their films to produce subtexts rich in the broader mythic implications (see in particular chapters 5 and 6); b) those appearing in films that break down at least some of the traditional interactions between music and film and elevate music to at least equal stature with the rest of the film-making process (see in particular the Eisenstein/Prokofiev section of chapter 5 and all of chapter 7); c) those appearing in certain recent films that integrate music into a postmodern, imagistic gestalt to produce a strange kind of inversion that might be called "Apollonian tragedy" (see chapter 8).

There is little difficulty in spotting the complexity of a work such as Beethoven's nearly hour-long Third ("Eroica") Symphony, where the formal structure of the first movement alone can keep the dutiful analyst busy for months. Or consider the ingenious way in which Beethoven, in the opening of his Violin Concerto, takes the simplest of figuresan evenly repeated, five-stroke timpani motif on the same noteand integrates it, one way or another, into almost all the material that follows in the first movement.

Previous page page_37 next page > < previous page page_38 next page > Page 38 2 Actions/Interactions: "Classical" Music In the interaction between the musical score and the film it backs, one of the first elements to consider is the very type of music that is used. There is hardly a musical style or genre that has not, at one point or another, made its way into the music/film interaction. Everything from the most current manifestations of pop music to the longestlasting "classical" styles has been heard either from the orchestra pits during silent screenings or on the music tracks of sound films, with stops along the way for jazz, folk music, various ethnic musics, and what have you.

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