Fahrenheit 451 Unit 1 Essay

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Of the original composers we discussed in class, the one that stands out the most for me is Alfred Newman and his music score for The Hunchback of Notre Dame. I have discussed this in an earlier paper, but the music used in the movie and in particular, the scene where Quasimodo is placed on display in the public square and is ridiculed by the villagers is the most memorable. The scene has very little dialogue, save for Quasimodo (Charles Laughton) begging for water. As the villagers mock his cries for help, the music comes in and suddenly captures the scene perfectly as the noise of the crowd fades out. The scene is moving on its own because of the acting by Charles Laughton and Maureen O’Hara but the music by Newman captures the essence of the scene and the story that no dialogue is needed. The violins playing soft,
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Using only strings, harps, xylophones and glockenspiel Herrmann’s music for the Dystopian sci-fi movie Fahrenheit 451 is the perfect balance for what the movie was about. As director Francois Truffaut remarked, when asked by Herrmann why he chose him over several modern composers, Truffaut replied “Because they’ll give me music of the twentieth century, but you’ll give me music of the twenty first” While his score on Taxi Driver is just perfection. The jazz saxophone and drums has an almost film noir feel to it, a perfect fit to the movie and the setting of 1970’s New York. It also represents the De Niro character perfectly in that the music underscores the character’s loneliness and depression. I can see why modern composers like Danny Elfman revere Herrmann so highly because not only was he a talented composer in the sense of big orchestral movie scores, but he was willing to take risks, try new and different ways to create music which proved to be just as

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