Official Nominations: Chariots Of Fire. Raiders of The Lost Ark. Dragonslayer. On Golden Pond. Ragtime.
There are fewer more mocked genres than Fantasy, with it being all but ignored by the Academy until LOTR. Dragonslayer is an anomaly then in that it received a nomination – maybe not all that surprising as Alex North provided the score. It’s interesting in that much of the music was recycled from pieces which didn’t make his score for 2001 and while seeming out of place on the surface, give the film a different edge. If anything, this nomination should have opened the door for Fantasy scores receiving nominations, but as the following year would prove, the Academy learned nothing and caused one of their most horrific snubs.
Chariots Of Fire was the official winner this year – difficult to argue with that as it’s another score that you know long before you see the movie. If the 80s were the decade of synth, this was one of the pieces which popularized the instrument, and is one of the finest uses – easily one of the most iconic movie scores of all time. It’s perhaps a shame then that it’s up against Raiders Of The Lost Ark – John Williams is going to get my vote once more. If there’s a soundtrack more iconic that Chariots Of Fire, or at least on par with it, then it’s this one – Williams twisting Star Wars melodies to concoct yet another heroic, rousing whole.
Our final two nominations stand no chance. Having said that, the main theme to On Golden Pond is utterly gorgeous in places – just that right blend of sad and happy which evokes the central themes of the movie. Ragtime too has a very good main theme and I get a lot of the same feelings with it as with the previous score. It’s a pity I’m not a fan of the era or style of music – it’s the slower, more emotional pieces I’m interested in.
My Winner: Raiders of The Lost Ark
My Nominations: Chariots Of Fire. Raiders of The Lost Ark. Blow Out. Clash Of The Titans. The Evil Dead. The Road Warrior.
Only the main two make it to my list. It’s another year and another Brian De Palma/Pino Donaggio effort – an underrated director/composer duo. Once again he gives a lot of poignancy and class to a film when a lesser composer would fill it with horror stereotypes, Blow Out being a score you can engage with outside of the movie. If Dragonslayer is nominated, then so too must be Clash Of The Titans, with Laurence Rosanthal’s adventurous score reminding us of his endless talents – he’s arguably TV’s greatest Composer and one of the finest composers to have never won an Oscar (having been nominated twice).
It’s another year and another John Carpenter nomination – his work on Escape From New York is every bit the equal to what Vengelis did on Chariots except that I much prefer Carpenter’s score and film. The Evil Dead deserves a nomination, even if it is nowhere near as memorable as other Horror scores, but it does maintain a constant threat. For Your Eyes Only is my mandatory Bond nomination – Bill Conti providing his only score for the series, and something a little different to what we are used to. The Road Warrior expands upon the weirdness of the first movie’s music, giving more memorable cues and offering something more heroic and hopeful than the more horror, alien feel of the first.
My Winner: Raiders Of The Lost Ark
Let us know your winner in the comments!