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Evan C

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Everything posted by Evan C

  1. They were all (Sibelius, Korngold, Steiner, Herrmann, etc.) influenced by Wagner at some point in their lives, so I would say that's the common link and why Sibelius can have a film score sound to his music.
  2. Evan C

    Shine (1996)

    I'd say that's a pretty negative review, even if it's more directed toward the people he thinks are exploiting Helfgott. But I'll definitely seek out the film.
  3. Eve's Bayou is a memory driven, religion haunted film that should definitely be on this list.
  4. Just published my review of Lourdes.
  5. Evan C

    Da 5 Bloods

    I was going to post this on Letterboxd, but it's down right now, so here are my initial, mildly spoilerish thoughts: The first half is Apocalypse Now, and the second half is The Treasure of the Sierra Madre. Spike Lee tips his hat obviously to those two films, but the decision to merge homages to them presents a new view of the horror of the "American War" in Vietnam and its link to the horror of racism in America. It's an explosive link, and the two halves of the movie literally hinge on an explosion. As the four surviving members of "Da 5 bloods" search for the gold they buried during the war, pursuing their own version of the American dream just as Tim Holt, Walter Huston, and Humphrey Bogart did, the far reaching consequences of the war and America's history of racism continue to rear their heads. However, Spike Lee is such a hopeful, love-filled storyteller that the bonds of blood run deeper the anger and greed that have defined so much of America's legacy at home and abroad.
  6. I could do Lourdes, unless someone else wants it.
  7. I saw it years ago, when I was trying to go through as many Peter Weir films as possible, and this was the only one I thought was actively bad. I just thought it was all over the place with too many ideas and sloppy pacing.
  8. Has anyone claimed The Red Shoes? Even though it's not my nominee, that would be my next choice, unless someone else really wants to do it. I'm also happy to update my Phantom Carriage blurb, if need be. After that, I'd be willing to do Amazing Grace unless someone else wanted it.
  9. I posted the Amadeus blurb and started working on Babette's Feast. If no one's asked for The Red Shoes yet, I'll happily do that, but I'll cede if someone else wants to do it.
  10. I third that sentiment. Thanks again for all your work in organizing this, Darren!
  11. I could update and expand my old blurb for Phantom Carriage, if you'd like. (At least, I'm 99% sure it's mine.) I'd rather hold out for Three Colors: Blue and talk about the importance of music in that film, but if no one else wants to do Amazing Grace and Stop Making Sense, I could do them.
  12. Anything you'd like me to start working on, Ken? I've been planning to review Amadeus for awhile, so I'd happily start on that. Grave of the Fireflies is the other of my nominees not in the top 25, so I could start writing that too, if you want.
  13. I'll check after posting this. A Man for All Seasons Ordet Andrei Rublev Three Colors: Blue (as a member of the trilogy and on this list) Babette's Feast Diary of a Country Priest The Seventh Seal Gospel According to St. Matthew The Flowers of St. Francis 2001: A Space Odyssey The Night of the Hunter The Mission Wings of Desire Tokyo Story The Apostle The Burmese Harp Grave of the Fireflies Schindler's List It's a Wonderful Life Sunrise ETA: 13/20, not terrible.
  14. Evan C

    Young Ahmed

    Despite seeing the ending coming far enough in advance, I thought it totally worked both for ending the film with the strongest moment of grace (not dissimilar from The Son or Two Days, One Night) and for the way it completely knocks down Ahmed's religious extremism while exalting the charity and compassion of his teacher's religious beliefs. I'll probably write a review myself once I've had time to think about it a bit more.
  15. I'd be willing to write about any (but not all) of the following: Three Colors: Blue (1st choice) Babette's Feast Amadeus Grave of the Fireflies The Red Shoes The Phantom Carriage Lourdes
  16. I know how you feel, I was formulating an essay on vocation and the drive to create art in the midst of a changing world, relating to the idea "If you want to make God laugh, tell Him your plans," as can be seen through Singin' in the Rain, Umbrellas of Cherbourg, and All That Jazz, but alas. My fallback was to write about the spirituality of either Lady Bird or Through a Glass Darkly... Maybe there's an angle on The Red Shoes and Amadeus about turning art into an idol that destroys someone? I'll have to think about it.
  17. Wow, 14/18 I voted for the losing film! The Bergman and Murnau definitely hurt the most. I'm most surprised by the Denis and Dardennes; I really thought those would go the other way. Proud to have been the one vote for A Tale of Winter.
  18. I just saw that. Should have checked that thread first.
  19. I didn't know Sibelius' 1st symphony, so that was really nice to listen to. I think your analysis is spot on, Andrew; there's definitely a Beethoven influence, and I heard a strong nationalistic influence as well, which is what gives it such a distinct character (as contrasted with some other first symphonies--Dvorak, Nielsen--who are clearly copying earlier masters in theirs). I actually really liked the pulsing crescendo of the 2nd movement; I thought Sibelius did a great job of controlling the mounting tension until it exploded through the orchestra. You're right about the effectiveness of the ending; I can think of a lot of pieces that end softly, but not many that have a huge chord followed by two quiet notes, almost as a sort of reaction to that chord. I also liked how the first movement laid out most of the themes and orchestration techniques that would come back through the symphony.
  20. I know Gett was released in 2015, and I think the top 25 marriage list was 2013 or 2014, so I don't think it was discussed then. But yes, it's a film we should definitely keep in mind for future lists.
  21. Evan C

    Organ Music

    I'd definitely say Dieu Parmi Nous, the 9th and final movement of La Nativite. For a second, there are a couple possibilities, so I'll go with one recording that I've made of Combat de la mort et de la vie, the fourth (of seven) movement from Les Corps Glorieux. With both pieces, try to construct a program for the music to represent something beyond itself. That's usually the best way to "get" Messiaen.
  22. Evan C

    Organ Music

    The conversation in the classical music thread branched off into organ music, so I decided to make a thread both to introduce anyone who's interested to some of the organ repertoire and to share some of my own recordings. Louis Vierne is one of my favorite composers, for his chromaticism, jazz influenced harmonies, and extension of traditional formal structure. His 6th organ symphony is a contender for my favorite piece of organ music. The finale alone may not be the best starting place--it's one of the most triumphant pieces he wrote, and it has a much more transformative affect when heard at the end of the entire symphony (not me playing)--but it's a recording I'm very proud of. The opening of Vierne's 2nd symphony may be a better introduction, for its gravitas and solemness. Jeanne Demessiuex was one of the first women to hold a successful international career as both an organist and composer, her Te Deum is one of my favorite pieces to play, and I've discovered the short motives that are repeated and varied make it a "modern" sounding piece that most audiences can really appreciate. Maurice Durufle's Prelude and Fugue on the Name of Alain is a piece I think everyone should know. It was written to commemorate his friend and fellow organist and composer Jehan Alain who died during WWII. Everyone knows Mendelssohn, but few people know his organ sonatas. The first is my favorite, but all six are quite good. Julius Reubke was a student of Liszt, and he died quite young, but he wrote one massive organ sonata based on the 94th Psalm, which is an epic staple of organ rep. That recording is by Gillian Weir, who's unquestionably one of the greatest organists ever. And of course, there's J. S. Bach, but I assume most people have at least some familiarity with his organ music. I also adore Messiaen's organ music, but for an introduction to the repertoire, I think the pieces above might be better starting places.
  23. My understanding is, and I could be mistaken, that Lynch planned to leave Laura's death an unsolved mystery, and initially even he didn't know who killed her. I think the network forced him to reveal the murderer, and he went with one of the more shocking options to fit with his thesis about the nature of evil.
  24. Evan C

    Classical Music

    Thank you both for the kind words. I'm happy to share more organ music if you're interested in exploring that repertoire. Maybe I'll start a thread for that. If you have mixed feelings about Lutoslawski, what are your feelings about Penderecki? I think Threnody for the Victims of Hiroshima has been used stunningly as underscoring, and his St. Luke Passion is quite the experience to hear.
  25. I'm going to make a pitch for Faust over Sunrise and Through a Glass Darkly over The Seventh Seal, partially because they're both lesser known than the other films, and consequently I believe should be championed more so. But more importantly, I think they're both better fits for the list, which is no doubt influenced by both of them being my favorite Murnau and Bergman films. I think the list needs one cosmic wager between God and Satan, a la Job, and Murnau's visually stunning depiction is still one of the most beautiful things every captured on film. The build to the end that God is Love, and is a love that can work with any imperfect human love for their salvation makes this one of the more overtly spiritual films that I think the list needs. Through a Glass Darkly is more subtle in its spirituality than The Seventh Seal, but it holds onto hope extremely faintly, and its balance of that hope and despair in the midst of a crisis of faith makes it the richer choice, imo. And it frankly wrestles with the notion that God may not be all good, and while we have films about God's silence or doubts of his existence, I think one that questions his goodness should be included too. The hardest choice for me is the Rosellinis. I'll probably go with Rome, Open City, if only because for a life of a saint film, I'm picking Joan over Ordet, mostly because Maria Falconetti. And I should be able to watch A Tale of Winter by Wednesday at the latest.
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