Eclectic I

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Tech Journal Semester 2 Week 1


Martin Armiger

The Trouble with Film Music

Martin sees the collision of multiple art forms, as a key area as to why problems arise when creating music for film. More specifically the differences in creative opinion between artists within different Fields, as "different art forms are different modes of perception#1" through which the artists view of reality. Eg musicians express their view of the world through music, actors through gestures, Dancers through movement etc.

The shear amount of different art forms employed within the creation of a film is incredible.

These include: Vision, Performance, Sound, Text, Music found/scored, Dialogue, Cinematic, Design, and editing.

The principal reason behind raising this point was to elucidate the fact that creative differences occur constantly within the industry. The movies “King Kong, “Troy”, and “The Hours” were all literal examples of where things went wrong at the last second. The original composer was fired and a new composer was brought in and had to create the film score for a complete/near complete film within a limited time before its release, because the Director and composer couldn't communicate and agree upon there ideas for the music of the film.

An analysis of music from two different schools of thought proved highly enlightening. The ‘classical’ view of it being a ‘gateway to the soul.’ A medium that speaks directly to the soul juxtaposed against the idea that it is an evolutionary process developed as a means of survival.

In a sense justifying it as an evolutionary process is the neurophysiology of ‘'affect'’ in relation to music, and in this instance music in film. “Music is a mechanism for controlling behaviour.#1"

From this arises the pivotal point raised by Martin. Through controlling our behaviour the music employed within film runs the risk of becoming “emotional wallpaper. That is to say it does not stay true to the audience'’s perception of reality’ but instead cheapens what they experience by telling them how to feel or react.

To finish up, Martin presented what he felt were movies that excelled in the use of music within film. Focussing greatly on how they correlated between what was ocurring on screen, whether through the music following the on screen action with incredible yet subtle detail or the juxtaposition of moods between the music and the on screen action as in the film Reservoir Dogs.


Stephen Whittington

Clarification on the differences between Program notes, a Score, and an analysis as well as just what was expected in each of these items was presented to us by Stephen during David Harris'’s usual Workshop session.

I was highly grateful for this although a little disappointed that we weren'’t given this discussion till after our submission of work as there were some key areas I could have improved on.

In particular I felt that I was unable to distinguish what the difference between a program note and an analysis was. I know understand that a program note is a "“description of the work to assist the understanding and appreciation of a non-specialist audience.#2"” While an analysis delves into “the structure and form of a work. ” Which is neither a simple description nor the process of composition.


#1 Martin Armiger

#2 Stephen Whittington

Picture References (In order of apprearance)


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