Top Ten Scores of 2011
by Nicholas Robinson
I have been a very delinquent blogger and I apologize for that. Today, I shall be posting all four of my end of the year Top Tens (WordPress allowing) starting with this, my Top Ten film scores. This year was a pretty bad year for film scores. I actually struggled to find 10 scores that I liked from this year but here they are without further ado.
10. Super 8
Michael Giacchino is a composer who I have praised to high heaven for the past 10 years doing the composing for all of J.J. Abrams TV endeavours along with his recent films, but especially for his work on Up. Now, he has given us two amazing scores this year, BOTH of which are on this list. The first is for yet another J. J. Abrams film about aliens in a small town in 1979 and it is really good. The way that the score switches from the tone of an innocent love story to a scene full of mysterious happenings caused by an alien presence to an action packed scene involving a train wreck or soldiers trying to capture the alien is just brilliant and deserves a spot on this list.
9. Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy by Alberto Iglesias
For most of these scores I have put on this list, you are probably going to hear about how it complemented the movie and that is true for all of them. They all complemented the tone of the movie but this one was really great in that regard. The use of the piano in Alberto Iglesias’ score was so brilliant in setting the subtle yet beautiful tone of the film and the way that everything in the movie just blended together in a harmony of greatness, much like any beautifully composed piano piece.
8. The Tree of Life by Alexandre Desplat
In a movie with very little dialogue (and I mean VERY little) the score is of paramount importance. Now even though the score isn’t the highlight of this movie, it is still very recognizable and very enjoyable. I mean this is a movie where I would literally be doing work and just turn it on just to listen to it for two and a half hours. The way the instrument (I don’t even know what instrument it is) is used to its full capacity by the composer along with the use of opera-like songs and the organ is just beautiful and deserves recognition
7. Contagion by Cliff Martinez
What I have started to notice with recent Steven Soderbergh films (maybe with the old ones too I haven’t seen them) are that the score is a very integral part of his films, especially with Contagion. There are a lot of sections in this film where even if there is dialogue, the score is a scene-stealer. I mean every time that I hear the score start to play I have to restrain myself from closing my eyes and just focusing on it. Cliff Martinez does a brilliant job with this score and deserves the number 7 spot on my list.
6. Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol by Michael Giacchino
Now Michael Giacchino has given me even more reason to praise him. This score was a brilliant piece of work. With a movie like this which changes environments and pace at the snap of a finger Giacchino does a brilliant job stitching together the music between scenes so brilliantly you’d have thought that he had the orchestra there playing one 2 hour and 15 minute piece. That, ladies and gentlemen, is why he deserves the number 6 position on my list
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