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Posts Tagged ‘Atticus Ross’

SOUL – Trent Reznor, Atticus Ross, and Jon Batiste

January 1, 2021 Leave a comment

Original Review by Jonathan Broxton

It’s been quite fascinating to observe the gradual tonal shift in Pixar’s movies over the years. Although their earliest entries – Toy Story in 1995, A Bug’s Life in 1998, Toy Story 2 in 1999 – contained their fair share of interesting adult and emotional themes in amongst the toy-and-bug based comedy and antics, in recent years the studio has become much more interested in exploring deeply existential themes of life and death. 2017’s Coco saw its Mexican protagonist journey to the fabled ‘land of the dead’ to seek a deceased family member, while Onward from earlier this year saw two alternate-reality fantasy elves trying to spend one more day with their deceased father. Pixar’s new film, Soul, may be the most ambitious one yet. It follows the story of Joe Gardner, a middle school band teacher who dreams of being a jazz musician; after an accident on the way back from a gig audition Joe finds himself literally separated from his soul and on his way to the ‘great beyond’. However, when Joe rebels against his fate because he doesn’t believe he has achieved what he was destined to do, he instead finds himself acting as a mentor to a pre-born soul named 22 who has been unable and unwilling to find the ‘spark’ she needs in order to achieve life on Earth. The film is directed by Pete Docter and features the voices of Jamie Foxx, Tina Fey, Graham Norton, and Rachel House. Read more…

MANK – Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross

December 8, 2020 3 comments

Original Review by Jonathan Broxton

Herman Mankiewicz was one of the most important and influential Hollywood screenwriters of the 1930s and 40s. As the oldest member of the Mankiewicz filmmaking family that also included brother Joseph (The Philadelphia Story, All About Eve) and nephew Tom (Superman, several Bond films), Herman’s main contribution to the cinematic pantheon was the screenplay for the 1941 film Citizen Kane, which many still believe to be the greatest movie ever made. David Fincher’s film Mank tells Herman Mankiewicz’s life story, and is a lusciously nostalgic look back at the heyday of old Hollywood, using the making of Citizen Kane as a framing story. The film was written by the director’s father Jack Fincher, and was originally supposed to be filmed in the 1990s with Kevin Spacey in the lead role, but the project was shelved for more than 20 years, and sadly Jack never lived to see it made as he died in 2003. Instead of Spacey, Fincher eventually cast Gary Oldman to play Mankiewicz, and surrounded him with a superb supporting cast, including Amanda Seyfried as actress Marion Davies, Lily Collins as his secretary Rita, Arliss Howard as producer Louis Mayer, Tom Pelphrey as his brother Joseph, Tuppence Middleton as his wife Sara, Tom Burke as Orson Welles, and Charles Dance as William Randolph Hearst, upon whom the character of Kane is reportedly based. Read more…

GONE GIRL – Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross

October 6, 2014 35 comments

gonegirlOriginal Review by Jonathan Broxton

Gone Girl is a mystery-thriller based on the novel by Gillian Flynn, directed by David Fincher, and starring Ben Affleck, Rosamund Pike, Neil Patrick Harris and Tyler Perry. It follows the life of Nick Dunne, whose world is turned upside down when he returns to his suburban home to find his wife, Amy, missing and apparently abducted. Before long, and despite his protestations to the contrary, the police and the media have fingered Nick – who is awkward and sometimes behaves inappropriately in front of the camera – as being responsible for Amy’s disappearance. Not only that, but secrets are revealed which show that Nick and Amy’s marriage was not as idyllic as they liked to portray, leading to further scrutiny of Nick and his actions. But, of course, things are never quite as they seem in films of this type, with more revelations and twists before the final reel which I’m not going to spoil here. Suffice to say, Gone Girl is a dark, nihilistic movie with a lot of points to make about levels of trust in relationships, unreliable narration, and trials by media, although, ironically, it doesn’t work as well as an actual thriller, with numerous plot holes and illogical jumps in narrative flow. Where Fincher excels, however, is in creating an oppressive atmosphere of uncertainty, through his muted color palette, understated acting choices, and the score, by Oscar-winners Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross. Read more…

THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO – Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross

December 27, 2011 40 comments

Original Review by Jonathan Broxton

There’s a lot of discussion going on in film music circles these days about the direction the art is taking, and a lot of it stems from Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross’s Oscar win for their score for The Social Network last year. Amongst many mainstream film critics, Reznor and Ross’s ambient drones are seen as ushering a newer, better way of scoring films, one that moves away from the “schmaltzy emotional manipulation” written by the likes of John Williams and James Horner, and instead embraces a cold, clinical musical style that is more akin to sound effects than traditional film music. In his review of The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, Variety film critic Justin Chang said the score “blends dread with driving momentum, establishing a richly unsettling mood with recurring dissonances, eerie wind chimes and pulsating reverb effects”. In his simultaneously-published review of War Horse, he criticized the film for “a cloying strain of bucolic whimsy driven by John Williams’ pushy score”, so you see what we’re up against. Read more…

THE SOCIAL NETWORK – Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross

November 18, 2010 1 comment

Original Review by Jonathan Broxton

A film about Facebook, the online phenomenon of the 21st century, doesn’t sound especially interesting when you first think about it, but the history of its creation is actually quite fascinating. Mark Zuckerberg was a 20-year-old student at Harvard University when he and his roommate Dustin Moskovitz launched the first incarnation of Facebook into the world in 2004; despite various lawsuits, development problems, and other issues, Facebook eventually became the dominant social networking website with 500 million users worldwide, and eventually making Zuckerberg the world’s youngest multi-billionaire, worth $6.9 billion according to the Forbes 2010 Rich List. The film is directed by David Fincher from a screenplay by Aaron Sorkin, and stars Jesse Eisenberg, Andrew Garfield, Justin Timberlake and Rooney Mara. Read more…