Music Supervisors Sound Off On Art, Craft of Complex Profession

Let’s talk about how certain songs are kind of forced into movies. I think something like “The Big Chill” doesn’t date well because those songs act too much as a device to advance the story. But I know that opinion is sacrilege amongst supervisors.

Monsted: Not at all. I sometimes wonder if we’re all living in the very long shadow of “The Big Chill” because in a way that film marks a turning point in the way music was used, and used very effectively. I haven’t seen the movie in years. But I do think the downside is that if you were to do what the “The Big Chill” did today, I think you would fall into some of the pitfalls of using music in a purely nostalgic way, and relying on that nostalgia to trigger a response in the audience that may not play in the same audience context that “The Big Chill” played in then.

Golubic: That time period, too, was very specific. I go back to “2001: A Space Odyssey” and how exciting the use of music was in that film. Most people who watch films had never seen music used quite that way. And it was of the genius of Kubrick saying, “I know the score is supposed to be here (but) I don’t want to use the score, I want to use these.” And that decision ultimately opens up a door in the same way “The Big Chill” was a big statement. It was kind of like saying, “We are going to tell a story that is going to speak to a generation and we’re going to use the music of that generation in a powerful way.” Every time you make a big statement it will, with time, seem a little outdated simply because it is such a strong part of the personality. If you look at Quentin Tarantino films, they’re so exciting because they’re such strong statements. They may not age as well as we think simply because they are such strong statements. Not because the work’s not great, but because it’s taking such risks.

via Variety.

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