Electronic Music And Mental Illness In Cinema.

This article contains narrative spoilers. From its very earliest occurrences, electronic instrumentation and music has been used in cinema to signpost various aspects of mental health problems and issues within diegetic characters.  Alongside its uses in creating alien worlds, electronic instrumentation seems to, at least in the eyes of the films’ creators, have an ability to go deep within the human psyche as well as … Continue reading Electronic Music And Mental Illness In Cinema.

Sounds of The Birds (1963) – Alfred Hitchcock.

Few directors have had their relationship with music analysed as much as Alfred Hitchcock.  His natural ability to select the right composer to almost brand his films aurally has often meant that the musical scores have become synonymous with his filmmaking style even though they have been created by several different composers over the years.  With this context then, Hitchcock’s 1963 film, The Birds, seems … Continue reading Sounds of The Birds (1963) – Alfred Hitchcock.

Analysis of Sound and Music in Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho (1960) – Part 4 (Conclusions)

Part 1. Part 2. Part 3.  Combining the Readings: Similarities, Contradictions and Cross-Over. “It’s as if the film were pinpointing the very essence of the unfilmable: the entwined couple, monstrous, the two-backed beast of the primal scene, the impossible couple of body and voice.” – Michel Chion (1999, p.149). While Murphy and Fenimore examine and address different points and issues, their resulting essays not only … Continue reading Analysis of Sound and Music in Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho (1960) – Part 4 (Conclusions)

Analysis of Sound and Music in Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho (1960) – Part 3 (Acousmatic Concepts)

Part 1. Part 2. Emphasis on Acousmatic Concepts in Ross J. Fenimore’s “Voices that Lie Within”. “Psycho almost didn’t happen.  This is a unique case of music literally saving a film.” – Sullivan (2006, p.246). Like much literature around Psycho, Fenimore’s “Voices That Lie Within” begins its argument with setting the scene. “Psycho begins with a theft.”(2010, p.80) he begins as so many often do.  … Continue reading Analysis of Sound and Music in Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho (1960) – Part 3 (Acousmatic Concepts)

Analysis of Sound and Music in Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho (1960) – Part 2 (An Audiovisual Foreshadowing)

Part 1. Emphasis on Visual Cues in Scott Murphy’s “An Audiovisual Foreshadowing in Psycho“. “We can grasp in effect something which, already in nature, appropriates the gaze to the function to which it may be put in the symbolic relation in man.” – Jacques Lacan (1977, p.105). Scott Murphy’s “An Audiovisual Foreshadowing in Psycho” is already an interesting proposition in the context of its original … Continue reading Analysis of Sound and Music in Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho (1960) – Part 2 (An Audiovisual Foreshadowing)

Analysis of Sound and Music in Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho (1960) – Part 1

Sound and Music in Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho and its Different Readings. Introduction. “If Psycho had been intended as a serious picture, it would have been shown as a clinical case with no mystery or suspense.  The material would have been used as the documentation of the case history.  We’ve already mentioned that total plausibility and authenticity merely add up to a documentary.” – Alfred Hitchcock … Continue reading Analysis of Sound and Music in Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho (1960) – Part 1

Video Interview With Richard Kaufman And Patrick Russ.

Here’s a video interview with two giants of Hollywood music; Richard Kaufman and Patrick Russ. Richard was the musical director of MGM for over twenty years and is now one of the most prolific conductors in Hollywood.  He’s worked closely with John Williams as well many of the giants of Hollywood film music. Patrick is one of the most in demand orchestrators in Hollywood, working … Continue reading Video Interview With Richard Kaufman And Patrick Russ.

Taxi Driver – Martin Scorsese (1976)

New York is a living beast.  Though a sense of cleanliness prevails over many of the affluent inner city districts these days, in the 1970′s it seems a pulsing, writhing mass of people and dirt.  Woody Allen’s Manhattan (1979) seems contrary to this yet the films that revel in this filthy concoction of crime and murder are some of the most addictive of the era. This mix is … Continue reading Taxi Driver – Martin Scorsese (1976)

Vertigo – Alfred Hitchcock (1958)

Reviewing a film that almost solely relies on its twists and turns can be a tricky task.  In the case of most Alfred Hitchcock films, the enjoyment comes from the suspense and the relief that flows over the viewer when the narrative twists and the shocks have been revealed.  Hitchcock’s magnum opus, Vertigo is one of these films and so therefore this review comes with … Continue reading Vertigo – Alfred Hitchcock (1958)