Can you believe all the snow Newfoundland has received?! Check it out if you have not heard, because they got our Blizzard of ‘77. Last Thursday, I got my flu shot, by Friday I was feeling some pain in my lower back and hips but thought it was all the grocery shopping I did. The weekend, I was toast. I had so much pain I had a hard time in coping and could not sleep and could not move well. I think that it is related to the flu shot...that’s my humble opinion. I feel a tad better this evening which is Tuesday when I am writing this little corner of fun film land. Let's turn to something more fun, I am going to an Oscar party, free , where I will see the red carpet and the Oscars on the big screen...first time ever! I will let you know how it will turn out. Now, Wandering Through The Shelves picked a great theme this week because it is all about film scores and I love scores and no, I am not talking about notches on my belt because there would not be that many, but actual film scores. I could go with the obvious which would be anything from John Williams like Star Wars or Jaws but I went with the Western and Sci-Fi/Fantasy. Here are my 3...
1. THE BIG COUNTRY-1958
This is a big film with big actors, a big expanse because it is the time of all the Vision and scopes..Vista vision...CinemaScope etc.. and it has a big score and it is one of my favourites. The score was composed by J. M who garnered an Oscar nomination for this score which is used throughout the film to great effect. It stars Gregory Peck as a man from the East who comes out west to marry the woman he loves played by pouty Carroll Baker. Little does he know that his quiet bravery is put to the test by the bigness of the people he meets and ends up in the middle of a land war. This is a great film with a deserved acting award going to Burl Ives(the Snowman in Rudolph The Red Nosed Reindeer) as the one half of the feuding men. Just listen to the opening theme, it gets ya going.
2. MYSTERIOUS ISLAND-1961
I love Bernard Herrmann who is best known for his collaboration with Hitchcock on Psycho, Vertigo and other Hitchcock films, but he also did some great fantasy films often in pairing with Ray Harryhausen whom I adore for bringing us this film along with the Sinbad films and Jason and the Argonauts. This film starts off during the civil war and men climb into a hot air balloon and become stranded on an island where they soon meet 2 women who survive the sinking of their ship. They very soon, realize that the animals, on this island, are a bit too big and they could end up being their dinner. Throw in Captain Nemo and you have a good adventure yarn.
3. ONCE UPON A TIME IN THE WEST-1969
How can I not pick Ennio Morricone who never won an Oscar, yet, for his scores and his most famous, arguably, are from the Spaghetti Westerns he collaborated on with Sergio Leone. This film does not star Clint Eastwood but Henry Fonda as one mean son of a bitch plus Charles Bronson, the good guy, Jason Robards as a fun bastard, and Claudia Cardinale as the Lady in the midst of it all. It is a glorious opera of film making that is a must see even if you are not one for Westerns but how can anyone not like a good western.
Which 3 would you choose?