The Keoki has ranted about the Acadamy's misses so today lets just talk about the nominees. Let me just say that Best Score is my favorite category. You can have a great performance and awesome cinematography and all the rest, but if you don't have a score that delivers....you really have nothing but pretty pictures and people. Case in point, The Passion of the Christ which is nominated for Best Score and is an amazing film but has a score that suffers howling woman syndrome. Ever since Gladiator in 2000, every historical epic has a score that has a jumble of world music and a woman "singing" in another language. It worked once for Gladiator and hasn't worked since, the reason it worked was Lisa Gerrard who is brilliant. The Passion of the Christ has no reason being on the list of Best Scores and will be absent from the clips provided today. The rest of the nominees were The Village, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Lemony Snicket and A Series of Unfortunate Events, and Finding Neverland. Canowine has posted a clip from The Village and gushed about Hillary Hahn and with good reason. The score for The Village is haunting and is a perfect example of a score making a film work! There is menace and atmosphere and dispair on display in James Newton Howard's score. Gorgeous!
The Village - The Gravel Road (mp3)
Johhny Williams score for Harry Potter is nothing new for Johnny Williams. It's fun and instantly hummable and unforgettable as are pretty much all John Williams scores. He is a superstar in a field of anonymity. He's been nominated 43 times and won 5 times and probably would have won more but voters think he has enough. Oh yeah and his nominated score for this year is magical!
Harry Potter - A Window To The Past (mp3)
Lemony Snicket And A Series Of Unfortunate Events is a very dark children's movie and is almost not even a children's movie. It works under the idea that children are smarter than we give them credit for and has a score that mirrors that idea. Scores for children's films are no longer disposable and this score and the scores for The Incredibles, Finding Nemo and others in last few years have proved. Thomas Newman's Lemony Snicket score is accessable and earnest and as with all Newman scores has a theme that knocks you right in the cockle region.
Lemony Snicket - The Letter That Never Came (mp3)
Lastly, Finding Neverland is a beautiful film with magic at it's heart and it's score is wonderful, fanciful and classic. And the music will really speak for it's self.
Finding Neverland - Neverland (Piano Variation In Blue) (mp3)
Finding Neverland - The Play and the Flight (mp3)
What's your pick?