Album: Snow Falling on Cedars: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack

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Album:

Snow Falling on Cedars: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack

Artist: James Newton Howard
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Label: Decca U.S.

Thanks to the success of pioneering musician-scorers like Hans Zimmer, the symbiosis of traditional orchestral tones with synthesized electronic elements has become one of film-scoring's most popular working methods. The underlying reasons, however, haven't been always been particularly altruistic; a music software program doesn't have to work for scale. Composer James Newton Howard's score for director Scott Hick's telling of novelist David Guterson's interracial soap opera cum murder mystery is one of the best of the new genre, a seamless sonic wedding of the…

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Thanks to the success of pioneering musician-scorers like Hans Zimmer, the symbiosis of traditional orchestral tones with synthesized electronic elements has become one of film-scoring's most popular working methods. The underlying reasons, however, haven't been always been particularly altruistic; a music software program doesn't have to work for scale. Composer James Newton Howard's score for director Scott Hick's telling of novelist David Guterson's interracial soap opera cum murder mystery is one of the best of the new genre, a seamless sonic wedding of the orchestral/choral/electronic, replete with appropriate ethnic instrumentation (is it real or is it Microsoft?). It's music that ranges dreamily from delicate flute passages and ethereal choral work to understated solo cello and percussive flourishes. This is what New Age music should sound like. --Jerry McCulley

Related Works

Book:Snow Falling on Cedars: A Novel

Snow Falling on Cedars: A Novel

David Guterson

On San Piedro, an island of rugged, spectacular beauty in Puget Sound, a Japanese-American fisherman stands trial for murder. Set in 1954 in the shadow of World War II, Snow Falling on Cedars is a beautifully crafted courtroom drama, love story, and war novel, illuminating the psychology of a community, the ambiguities of justice, the racism that persists even between neighbors, and the necessity of individual moral action despite the indifference of nature and circumstance.

Film:Snow Falling on Cedars

Snow Falling on Cedars

Scott Hicks

Australian director Scott Hicks’s follow-up to his widely beloved Shine comes as a small shock. Based on David Guterson’s bestselling novel, Snow Falling on Cedars is far removed from the character-driven, pure storytelling of Shine and a comparative plunge into moody atmospherics. Action insinuates itself through the director’s determined eye for watercolor composition and free-floating perspective, like random shoots of new growth in an overwhelming rain forest. It’s impossible to be complacent as a viewer because Hicks’s meditative style…

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