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Midway


Colosseum (4005939594022)
Varèse Sarabande (0030206594027)
Movie | Released: 1976 | Format: CD
 

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# Track   Duration
1.Prologue0:31
2.Main Title2:50
3.Yamamoto's Choice1:12
4.Signal Corps Con1:29
5.Yamamoto's Second Meeting2:21
6.Hiroshima Harbour0:47
7.Haruko's Dilemma0:58
8.By Order of Nimitz2:38
9.Cancelling Operation "K"1:54
10.Strawberry 51:23
11.Attack Begins2:17
12.Missing the Flatlands0:48
13.Morning of the Battle1:15
14.Red Parks Fighters1:23
15.Scout 41:09
16.Ensign Gay Afloat0:37
17.Burning Carriers1:14
18.Crash Landing1:48
19.Good News for Nimitiz1:08
20.Matt Takes Off0:54
21.Matt's Crash1:10
22.End Title: Midway March2:25
23.Men of the Yorktown March2:46
 34:57
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Midway - 06/10 - Review of Tom Daish, submitted at (English)
I honestly didn't expect there to be any John Williams titles in Varese's excellent set of re-recordings, but when I heard that they were going to be recording Midway, I was extremely pleased and looking forward to it immensely. Unfortunately, Midway isn't the kind of exciting wall to wall, thematic scoring from John Williams we all expect and the whole thing comes across as being rather disappointing on the whole. One of the biggest problems is that, in common with many 1970's films, it was quite sparsely scored, more akin to the way Goldsmith's Patton was scored with the occasional short track at important moments in the film. Unlike Patton, Midway's tracks are even shorter and there is less chance of development of the themes and so short of a few bursts of the Midway and Men of the Yorktown Marches, there are exactly any moments of great tunefulness. Admittedly, both of these marches are supremely good and are both reprised in kind of abridged concert versions for the end credits. I was bitterly disappointed to find that the full concert version of the Men of the Yorktown March had been omitted as this is something I've been looking forward to for a long time and I think it was a slight oversight on the part of the producers to miss off the two concert arrangements which could either have started or ended the disc, especially since the rest of the score only runs to 35 minutes.

There are a few moments of interesting and quite brutal action, but these never last more than a minute or so and the time for the quieter tracks to go by seems somewhat interminable and while hoping that something interesting or exciting might be just around the corner, this never really comes. I guess this is a case of a score giving you something, but making you want so much more. I suspect that had Williams scored this in the 1980's and the film had contained more music, it would go down as a classic, but as it stands it will most likely be remembered for the two outstanding marches which probably have more impact in the last five minutes than the rest of the score put together.

I would still like to thank Varese for making this score available, I do wonder if it's one of those scores that improves with each listen, but as it stands it makes a quite interesting for-runner to Williams later and more impressive achievements. The performance is excellent, Rick Wentworth proving himself to be just as capable as Debney and McNeely, of course having the superb RSNO helps I'm sure! I was quite surprised that Joel McNeely wasn't asked to conduct this score given the similarity between much of his early work and Williams, I'd have thought he would have the Williams 'feel' but on listening there can be no complaint in the interpretation department.
Midway - 06/10 - Review of Lammert de Wit, submitted at (Dutch)
Midway, een oudere film over de grote Amerikaans-Japanse slag in de Stille Oceaan tijdens de tweede wereldoorlog. John Williams schreef de muziek voor deze film.

Bij een oorlogsfilm van dit formaat verwacht je een enigszins epische of heroïsche score met de nodige drum en fanfaremuziek. Niets is echter minder waar.
De score is een reeks tracks met vooral nogal melodieloze suspence-achtige muziek met vooral blazers in de hoofdrol. Maar die blazers maken vooral lawaai en eigenlijk geen echte melodie of mooi thema. Er is wel een muzikaal thema dat in een aantal tracks voorbij komt, zoals in 'By Order Of Nimitz' en 'Missing The Flatlands'. Het is een thema dat best wel aanspreekt en het is jammer dat het maar zo beperkt in de score wordt gebruikt.
De Japanners, zoals Yamamoto en Haruko krijgen tracks mee met vooral gebrek aan muziek: minimalistisch en nietszeggend.
Er zijn eigenlijk maar 2 tracks die aanspreken en dat zijn de beide laatste, en dat is rijkelijk laat. Die 2 laatste tracks zijn bijzonder fraai en tonen wel iets van die heroiek die deze score node mist. Deze muziek is emotioneel geladen en toont de heldenmoed met mooie mars- en fanfareklanken, waarbij ook het fraaie thema weer voorbij komt.

Helaas is het een wat tegenvallende score voor deze spektakelfilm. Teveel tracks zijn voorzien van nogal minimalistische muziek en ook het gehalte aan tamelijk melodieloze actiemuziek is behoorlijk hoog. De paar fraaie tracks kunnen hier weinig aan veranderen, al sluit de score wel bijzonder fraai af.
Toch komt de waardering daarmee niet hoger dan 62 uit 100.


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