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Sci-Fi Score Awards Contenders Recruit Veteran Composers for Vastly Different Films

Sci-Fi Score Awards Contenders Recruit Veteran Composers for Vastly Different Films
You could say 2017’s standout sci-fi and fantasy scores cover space, shape and size as these four veteran composers tackle each film’s themes from vastly different conceptual origins.

Blade Runner 2049

Music by Benjamin Wallfisch and Hans Zimmer

Vangelis’ music for the 1982 original is so iconic, says co-composer Wallfisch, that the challenge was “how can we take that sonic language and emotional impact, but completely reinvent it?”

Curiously, the star of the 2017-by-way-of-2049 score is (like the Vangelis original) a Yamaha Cs-80 synth, which Zimmer bought back in 1970s London and was still in (mostly) working order. “It has a life of its own and every time you play a note, it’s a slightly different pitch,” Wallfisch says with a laugh.

Much of the score, however, was created with contemporary synths, often with sounds inspired by other ‘80s electronic instruments; and some live players and vocalists. “Textures and colors evolve very slowly to match the pace
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Oscars 2018: ‘Dunkirk’ and ‘Blade Runner 2049’ Boast Groundbreaking Sound Design

  • Indiewire
Oscars 2018: ‘Dunkirk’ and ‘Blade Runner 2049’ Boast Groundbreaking Sound Design
To help convey the “visceral realism” of “Dunkirk,” Christopher Nolan oversaw an intense soundscape covering land, sea, and air timelines for the legendary evacuation of more than 300,000 British and Allied troops under German bombardment. And for “Blade Runner 2049,” Denis Villeneuve spearheaded a musical blurring of sound and score that carried both emotional and atmospheric weight in driving the “more human than human” narrative.

Thus, in each case, sound works both overtly and subliminally to immerse us in war and dystopia, sharing equal importance with the stunning visuals provided by Hoyte van Hoytema and Roger Deakins, respectively. In the end, it makes no difference if we can’t distinguish sound from music, as they merge into a singular experience.

The Sounds of Survival

Chris wanted a sense of velocity and everything’s happening so fast with the enemy approaching at their own speed, so there’s a time limit,” said Richard King,
See full article at Indiewire »

The Triumphant Return of the 80’s Style Synth Score!

Tom Jolliffe takes a look at the return to popularity of the 80’s style synthesizer score…

Cinema and the orchestra have had a long-standing relationship. Over the years the big screen has been almost as much about the accompanying music as the film. When someone like John Williams creates iconic, rousing, emotional, bombastic and beautifully crafted scores like Star Wars, Superman and Indiana Jones, it enraptures an audience.

In the late 60’s, through the 70’s, people began toying with synthesizers more and more to create sound scapes and scores. Other wordly, and more ambient and enveloping than emotionally manipulative. They lacked a certain refined quality that the Orchestral score would give you but that sound in its own way (and in the right film) worked. Mike Oldfield’s Tubular Bells as a companion piece to The Exorcist is supremely effective and iconic. Or Wendy Carlos and the score for The Shining.
See full article at Flickeringmyth »

‘Blade Runner 2049’: The Most Difficult Craft Challenges for Director Denis Villeneuve

  • Indiewire
‘Blade Runner 2049’: The Most Difficult Craft Challenges for Director Denis Villeneuve
Blade Runner 2049” offered the most complex set of craft challenges yet for director Denis Villeneuve. He had an ambitious vision for picking up where Ridley Scott left off 30 years later, exploring dystopia, humanity, and memory in a way that was linked personally, emotionally, and intellectually. And that entailed a much more involved collaborative process with master cinematographer Roger Deakins, production designer Dennis Gassner, and the rest of the below-the-line team.

But it first began with lighting, and, for the first time, Villeneuve worked out a thematic visual plan with Deakins that drove the narrative about Ryan Gosling’s blade runner/replicant K becoming “more human than human.” And this visual journey enabled the movie to have a hypnotic, dream-like quality. It began with the opening of Ana’s eye (the memory designer played by Carla Juri) and concluded with K’s last waking, cathartic moment in the snow.

A
See full article at Indiewire »

Oscar 2017: It’s Hans Zimmer’s ‘Dunkirk’ vs. ‘Blade Runner 2049’ for Best Original Score

  • Indiewire
Oscar 2017: It’s Hans Zimmer’s ‘Dunkirk’ vs. ‘Blade Runner 2049’ for Best Original Score
For Hans Zimmer, it began with Christopher Nolan’s pocket watch on “Dunkirk” and a creative flourish at the keyboard immediately following his first viewing of Denis Villeneuve’s “Blade Runner 2049.” The result was the creation of two very different but experimental scores in collaboration with Zimmer’s protege, Benjamin Wallfisch (“It,” “Hidden Figures”), which are both Oscar frontrunners. (A third composer, Lorne Balfe, also contributed to the “Dunkirk” score, but only two composers can be submitted to the academy’s music branch for Oscar consideration.)

“I love these days how we are truly breaking down the walls between sound design and music,” Zimmer said. But to help convey “the visceral realism” of “Dunkirk’s” legendary evacuation of more than 300,000 British and Allied troops under German bombardment, the score needed to be in perfect sync with picture and sound. And this was complicated by playing with time and the
See full article at Indiewire »

Flickering Myth Film Class: Taking time to immerse your audience

In the latest instalment of Flickering Myth’s film class, Tom Jolliffe looks at immersing the audience…

In the ever changing landscape of film, it seems in the modern age of digital film-making, modern editing programmes with limitless options and changing temperament (seemingly) with film audiences, that we’ve seen an inherent shift from film-makers devoting time and indeed bravery in allowing an audience time to ingest their story, to entertainment which washes over us.

Films used to do this with far more regularity. I mean how much longer do you need to fully ingest the majesty of the four hour running time of Lawrence of Arabia? Not much, but regardless, this was a film that was visually beautiful and fully immersed the audience into the setting.

We’re now in the age where you can have 14 cuts in 6 seconds (Taken 3…the second time in a film class I
See full article at Flickeringmyth »

5 reasons to see Blade Runner 2049

  • Cineplex
5 reasons to see Blade Runner 20495 reasons to see Blade Runner 2049Scott Goodyer10/11/2017 2:28:00 Pm

Blade Runner 2049 is now playing and a definite must see on the big screen for many reasons.

The movie stars Ryan Gosling who plays Officer K, a young Blade Runner whose discovery of a long-buried secret leads him to track down former Blade Runner Rick Deckard (Harrison Ford), who's been missing for thirty years.

If you're on the fence about seeing it, check out our list below of reasons you need to see this long-awaited sequel!

1. The Blade Runner Universe

For many fans of the original 1982 masterpiece, we fell in love with the futuristic world that depicted a dystopic Los Angeles in 2019. Director Ridley Scott and Cinematographer Jordan Cronenweth at the time made a world that was dark and bleak yet beautiful. From the rainy streets filled with oddball characters suspiciously walking around under
See full article at Cineplex »

Review: Blade Runner 2049 (2017)

Back in 1982, not only did we believe that 2019 would have flying cars (we best get our skates on then) but we were witness to movie history. Though it struggled at the box office, Ridley Scott’s now revered Science Fiction classic – adapted from the work of equally influential author Philip K. DickBlade Runner would come to inspire generations of filmmakers and film watchers. Capturing a dystopic futuristic La and populating it with neon-lit promotion, fire-breathing chimneys and an amalgamation of mis-matched inhabitants, the film was a noirish vision of ferocity and bleak beauty, with the underlying themes still being deciphered to this day. As Harrison Ford’s “Blade Runner” officer Rick Deckard was tasked with hunting down the bioengineered Replicants, we were left to ponder the movie’s mystery, its characters and its many contemplative ideas. How could anyone dare tackle a sequel, especially 35 years on, after the film
See full article at The Cultural Post »

‘Blade Runner 2049’: The Power of Cinema on Full Blast

This is going to be one of the shortest reviews one is certain to encounter when reading about Denis Villeneuve’s ‘Blade Runner 2049′ and with good reason: the power of it comes from how little you know going into the theater. Not only that, but, to take a moment of humility, I feel uncertainty in how to properly convey such a cinematic experience. But to overcome that and cut to the chase: ‘Blade Runner 2049’ is one of a small handful of masterpieces produced by 2017 and well on its way to becoming an iconic film in its own right.

Image Courtesy of Warner Bros. / Alcon Entertainment

It’s been thirty years since disillusioned blade runner Rick Deckard (Harrison Ford) “retired” violent replicants and disappeared into a self-imposed exile with the experimental replicant Rachael (Sean Young) into the grimy night of dystopian Los Angeles and a great deal has happened in the world.
See full article at Age of the Nerd »

‘Blade Runner 2049’: Composer Benjamin Wallfisch on How to Follow Up a Classic Sci-Fi Score

‘Blade Runner 2049’: Composer Benjamin Wallfisch on How to Follow Up a Classic Sci-Fi Score
It’s been a big year for composer Benjamin Wallfisch. First, he reimagined Edward Elgar’s “Nimrod” to create the most talked-about musical moment in Christopher Nolan’s “Dunkirk”; then he composed a complex, frightening symphonic score for “It,” now the most successful horror movie of all time; and most recently, he collaborated with Hans Zimmer on the music for one of the most anticipated films of the season, “Blade Runner 2049,” opening today.

Wallfisch has often worked with Zimmer (writing additional music for “12 Years a Slave,” “The Little Prince” and “Batman v. Superman,” then a full partnership on last year’s “Hidden Figures”) and, says the composer, “Blade Runner” began much the same way, with a phone call from Zimmer asking him to come over to his studio.

There he found Zimmer conferring with director Denis Villeneuve and editor Joe Walker about the musical needs of the sequel to the 1982 Harrison Ford film. They
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Blade Runner 2049 Review

Since its 1982 release, two schools of thought have emerged regarding Ridley Scott’s sci-fi neo-noir Blade Runner. Some believe the film’s striking visuals and rich subtext makes it undeniably worthy of its hard-earned classic status — following a famously disappointing theatrical run — while others believe its bizarre aesthetic and several “director’s cuts” have led to Scott’s work being more legendary as a cinematic anomaly than a masterful piece of filmmaking. No matter which way people see Blade Runner, one thing remains constant: nearly all (rightfully) regard it as one of the most influential sci-fi films of all time. So, needless to say, the odds were certainly stacked against director Denis Villeneuve as he set out to make Blade Runner 2049.

Set a full 30 years after Harrison Ford’s Rick Deckard hunted down a group of rebellious replicants (i.e., synthetic people with a limited lifespan) in the original film,
See full article at We Got This Covered »

‘Blade Runner 2049′ Review

Stars: Ryan Gosling, Ana de Armas, Harrison Ford, Jared Leto, Robin Wright | Written by Hampton Fancher, Michael Green | Directed by Denis Villenueve

Films like this make me glad I don’t need to give a star rating. Because films like Blade Runner 2049 – and there aren’t many of them – take time to absorb, to fully comprehend. It’s a most unlikely mega-budget blockbuster: slow and long and extravagantly cerebral; the absolute antidote to YouTube instant reaction culture. Give me another 35 years and I might have finally made up my mind.

Where the 2019-set Blade Runner was a hardboiled noir in future-gothic clothing, Blade Runner 2049, its direct sequel, is an exacting detective procedural sketched on a desolate canvas. Except both those descriptions are hopelessly reductive, which is precisely what makes both films stand out amongst their peers. There’s so much going on here, so mesmerising in its execution,
See full article at Blogomatic3000 »

‘Blade Runner’ and the Fluid Canvas of Ridley Scott’s Sci-Fi Masterpiece

As Ridley Scott lives and breathes — and lord knows he will, so long as there are more Alien prequels to be made — there is always the chance that Blade Runner: The Final Cut‘s title may yet become anachronistic. But for going on ten years now, the seventh distinct full-length cut of Scott’s magnum opus has fulfilled its promise of being the last word on Blade Runner. Released in 2007, this version of the iconic 1982 sci-fi film mixes and matches various scenes and edits from multiple previous editions, while digitally tweaking the visual effects, colors, and audio mixing in preparation for Blade Runner‘s inaugural release in high-definition formats. Out of the many previous incarnations, The Final Cut most closely resembles Scott’s 1992 Director’s Cut, with some subtle but noteworthy modifications.

Though the film is based on Philip K. Dick’s novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?
See full article at The Film Stage »

Listen to Hans Zimmer and Benjamin Wallfisch’s 1.5-Hour Score for ‘Blade Runner 2049’

With a host of glowing reviews (including our own), Denis Villeneuve’s sci-fi sequel Blade Runner 2049 finally opens tonight. Ahead of the release, Warner Bros. have now unveiled the full score from Hans Zimmer and Benjamin Wallfisch (It), who replaced Jóhann Jóhannsson (Arrival, Sicario). Clocking in at 1.5 hours, it’s an epic undertaking and one I personally won’t hit play on until I’ve seen the film. However, you’ll want to bookmark this page.

“The thing I will say is that making movies is a laboratory. It’s an artistic process. You cannot plan things. Jóhann Jóhannsson is one of my favorite composers alive today. He’s a very strong artist,” Villeneuve tells Al Arabiya English via Indiewire. “But the movie needed something different, and I needed to go back to something closer to Vangelis. Jóhann and I decided that I will need to go in another
See full article at The Film Stage »

An IMAX Experience Worthy of ‘Blade Runner’

Something I’ve stated before in pieces such as this is the rather distinct feeing of euphoria that comes from experiencing the classics on the big screen. The best ones have the capability to “transport” their audience back to the days of original release, granting new generations of audiences a taste of what past audience members felt and experienced back when. And then, every once in a while, there’s the experience that transcends what came before. For one night only – the night of Wednesday the 20th, to be precise – a rather small handful of IMAX theaters around the country, including Hollywood’s historic Tcl Chinese IMAX (where this “humble” cinephile ), ran what was advertised as a “one night only” IMAX projection of the “Final Cut” edit of Sir Ridley Scott’s seminal Blade Runner, both as a tribute to the film on its 35th anniversary and to give the
See full article at Age of the Nerd »

‘Blade Runner 2049’ Soundtrack: Denis Villeneuve Finally Reveals Why Jóhann Jóhannsson Left the Project

  • Indiewire
‘Blade Runner 2049’ Soundtrack: Denis Villeneuve Finally Reveals Why Jóhann Jóhannsson Left the Project
Denis Villeneuve and Jóhann Jóhannsson have collaborated three times in the last few years, with the Icelandic composer scoring “Prisoners,” “Sicario,” and “Arrival.” That partnership was meant to continue with “Blade Runner 2049,” but Hans Zimmer and Benjamin Wallfisch eventually took over for Jóhannsson on the long-awaited sequel to Ridley Scott’s sci-fi landmark. After much speculation, Villeneuve has commented on the reason why he chose to go in a different musical direction.

“The thing I will say is that making movies is a laboratory. It’s an artistic process. You cannot plan things. Jóhann Jóhannsson is one of my favorite composers alive today. He’s a very strong artist,” Villeneuve told Al Arabiya English. “But the movie needed something different, and I needed to go back to something closer to Vangelis. Jóhan and I
See full article at Indiewire »

Oscars: Is ‘Blade Runner 2049’ Another ‘Mad Max: Fury Road?’

Oscars: Is ‘Blade Runner 2049’ Another ‘Mad Max: Fury Road?’
Oscar-nominated filmmaker Denis Villeneuve’s risky “Arrival” follow-up “Blade Runner 2049” has finally arrived, sending the visionary director from one whirlwind awards season straight into another.

Judging by early reviews, the film successfully blew up its share of skirts, though it’s clear many are reacting foremost to its considerable visual scope. Villeneuve is an atmospherist, and he continues, by his own admission, to be drawn to abstract scripts that allow a lot of room for him to inhabit them and place his stamp. He certainly found that here; if you take more than a few moments to think about the actual story being told in “Blade Runner 2049,” it completely disintegrates. Nevertheless, the film has big ideas and the import of those ideas is enough to carry many a viewer through.

It helps that the whole thing is such a feast for the eyes. After the first images from the film surfaced, cinematographer
See full article at Variety - Film News »

The Essential Harrison Ford

In the build up to the release of Blade Runner 2049 [read our review here], Tom Jolliffe looks at the essential films of the key cast, starting with Harrison Ford

A long, varied and fine career has seen Ford become iconic in two franchises in particular (and indeed the upcoming reprise of Rick Deckard could well make that another).

Throughout the 80’s he became firmly established as the ultimate blockbuster icon. No one has quite hit such iconic and consistent status as Harrison Ford. We’re talking Han Solo and Indiana Jones. One beloved franchise character is something every star dreams of, but to get two, on top of all the other great roles he’s had? That’s astonishing.

So in celebration of Ford, and in no particular order, here are the five films that need to be watched to best appreciate the man’s gifts and star power.

Witness

Ford is well-considered
See full article at Flickeringmyth »

Blade Runner 2049 review

You owe it to yourself to go and see Blade Runner 2049 in a massive cinema. If you still need convincing, here's a spoiler-free review...

This film should not exist. Not just because its predecessor, released in 1982, was initially a critical failure - and who in their right mind would sink $185 million into making a sequel to a movie that took a decade to be appreciated? Not just because the original Blade Runner was a self-contained story, unsullied by the kinds of disappointing follow-ups and spin-offs that blighted the once mighty Alien. No, Blade Runner 2049 shouldn’t exist because belated, expensive sequels are so seldom worth our time and money.

How miraculous, then, that Blade Runner 2049 emerges not only as a film that complements the original - and arguably deserves to be mentioned in the same breath as Ridley Scott’s seminal masterpiece - but also stands as
See full article at Den of Geek »
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