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 Post subject: March 2010
PostPosted: Wed Dec 23, 2009 10:53 am 
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Joined: Sat Nov 19, 2005 1:43 pm
Posts: 162
Location: Northern California

My take on the Oscars. I watched them in a hotel room in Durango, Colorado... on an emergency trip. Mary Ann's mother (whom I am quite close with) was hospitalized after a very bad fall that broke her hip. At age 93, it's something doctors (and family members) worry about. So in between our constant vigil and naps, Mary Ann, Regina, Veronika and I took time off to watch the Oscars.

Okay show. I had some hope that AVATAR would do better than it did. I'm okay with THE HURT LOCKER winning so much, but it wasn't my favorite film by a long shot.

Biggest outrage: omitting Farrah Fawcett from the tribute memorial for those entertainers recently deceased. What's up with that?? After having her death sidelined for a week by non-stop news of the death of Michael Jackson, I was floored that the Academy repeated the same travesty. I hope the producer of that memorial segment is whipped out of town with his (or her) tail between the legs!

No explanation for why John Hughes was singled out added to the sense that someone handled the memorials poorly. If there was a reason that insiders knew, or well-informed viewers knew, that still left the rest of us wondering.

Sandra Bullock's speech was good. Ditto Jeff Bridges. I didn't find the pairing of Steve Martin and Alec Baldwin to be all that comfortable or entertaining, but it worked out okay. The best funny bit was probably Ben Stiller in blue. The worst bit - after the afore-mentioned travesty - was having Tom Hanks simply (and no doubt unintentionally) come up and announce the best picture winner without any summary of the ten nominees. I dare say some people by that point may have forgotten what some of the other nominees were... a recap would've been appropriate.

The horror movie tribute was a nice idea but sure felt rushed or something. The montage certainly wasn't edited in a compelling manner. Rather it seemed sort of hodge podge. Oh, well.

And the music... a mess, in my opinion. Nice to have a brief production number centered around the original score contenders. But the non-stop playing of unrelated song tunes, movie themes and whatnot with little or no reference to the immediate proceedings was - to say the least - annoying. Okay, "The Way We Were" matched the entrance of Barbra Streisand, but we actually thought it was probably just a coincidence! I don't know if this oddball mixture of showtunes was the work of Marc Shaiman or not, but hopefully someone will focus back on the relevant movies next time.

Congratulations on seeing the incredibly talented Michael Giacchino get Oscar recognition!

All in all, I found the show flat and lacking something spirited. The emphasis on movies rather than production numbers was good but perhaps more imagination could have been used in setting things up. Maybe some pizzazz would've helped, I don't know. It needed something.

Whatever. We'll be watching again next year, no doubt.


Jeff tells me there are just under 200 copies of CERVANTES left in stock. That suggests the album may sell out before too many moons go by. If Les Baxter tickles your fancy, this is certainly one of his more colorful scores. Don't get left out.

Jeff also tells me that BILLIE / POPI is doing "just okay" and no one needs to rush and grab it before it sells out. I'd rather be saying it's selling like hotcakes but my mom taught me never to lie.


Two new Intrada CDs coming to a store near you this Tuesday! Well, coming from us here directly to you, but who's counting?

We'll post announcements for both CDs on Monday, March 29. Orders will begin shipping on Tuesday, March 30.

Both are limited editions. One offers sensitive sixties film music by an Oscar-winning veteran who is no longer with us. 1000 copies are available. The other offers one of my all-time favorites - and for those who know me - a pet project for many years. 2000 copies are available to this masterpiece by another composer who is no longer with us... but certainly has had a great number of incredibly intelligent, harmonically challenging and often intense soundtracks made available over the last few years - frequently by Intrada, I'm happy to say!


Jeff tells me to pass on that there are about 120 copies of our latest Ernest Gold release remaining in stock. As to the Oscar-nominated masterpiece by Jerry Fielding, he says we have some 500 copies remaining.

STRAW DOGS was certainly one of the most controversial movies of the day, getting equal attention in 1971 side by side with A CLOCKWORK ORANGE that same year. What an incredible period for film! The music Fielding wrote for it remains as intelligent and complex as any score written for film. I can't say enough about how brilliant the final music is, descending into total darkness with a variant on what started as a simple brass fanfare.

I'm getting close to a soapbox here but this is a level of intelligence and intensity in film composition that just doesn't seem to exist much anymore. But you can enjoy it with this CD, which took a lot of work to resolve numerous licensing requirements. It's an album we're proud to have made happen.

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