Hey Sand Stars
I am a HUGE fan of music obviously, considering I took the art on as a profession. I love listening to music, composing music and clearly performing music but another aspect of the art that I love is seeing music as a character onscreen.
I’m a huge lover of cinema and, growing up, I would often see movies as an escape to a fantasy world. But what MADE those movies so amazing? The MUSIC, of course.
Imagine ‘Jaws’ without the creepy music reminding you that someone was going to be eaten alive or the jolting, staccato strings from that famous shower scene in ‘Psycho’. In Bollywood, how about that haunting love song from the thriller starring Shah Rukh Khan: ‘Darr’?
Never mind music during pivotal scenes; I love the sense of familiarity that comes with a theme brought up repeatedly during a movie (like the love theme by James Horner from ‘Titanic’). These themes remind us of the characters and their stories. One of my all-time favourite themes is ‘Sayuri’s Theme’ by John Williams which is indicative of the character of Sayuri, the reluctant geisha from ‘Memoirs of a Geisha’. The piece is light, yet strong and hopeful. The other stand-out piece in the movie is the ‘Chairman’s Waltz’ which is sad and lamenting; quite like the Chairman withholding his feelings for Sayuri.
I prefer instrumental soundtracks with an ethnic influence, like the music from ‘The Mummy Returns’, ‘Prince of Persia: The Sands Of Time’, ‘Memoirs of a Geisha’ or ‘The Forbidden Kingdom.’ However, sometimes a contemporary soundtrack comes along that bowls me over completely! One of those was ‘The Dark Knight Rises.’ I’m driven to walk a little faster or feel more energetic when hearing a dramatic piece like the theme from the latter.
There is other movie music that may not be melodic-based, but still evokes emotion in the audience. One such snippet is in Baz Luhrmann’s ‘The Great Gatsby’ when the ‘green light’ is shown onscreen. The sound used is so haunting; a reminder that Gatsby will never reach it.
In my recent favourite flick ‘Interstellar,’ dramatic, loud, dissonant music was used to emphasise tension and fear (the organ was used repeatedly), but composer Hans Zimmer and the film’s sound editor also made ample use of silence for dramatic effect.
Next time you watch a movie, consider the music more closely. For if there was none, would the films be as enjoyable…?
On that note, I’m off to watch another film! See you at the movies!
Live, Love & Laugh ‘LittlePianoDiva’ Style.
Promotional material for ‘Memoirs Of A Geisha,’ ‘The Mummy Returns’ & ‘Interstellar.’