Music Break: Tina Guo – Wonder Woman Theme

June 10, 2017

Oftentimes mass media is a mirror for profound movements in society – I watch movies always with an eye to what they may be telling us.

Have not seen Wonder Woman yet, maybe next week – but the enthusiasm seems at least partly reflect what I have observed over last few months in the US. The election of the ultimate Male Chauvinist Pig as President has awakened a generation of mighty pissed women, young and old, who have no fucks left to give.

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Below, for music nerds, surprisingly insightful discussion of how this music works and resonates with audiences.

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9 Responses to “Music Break: Tina Guo – Wonder Woman Theme”

  1. andrewfez Says:

    Zimmer and the last 15-20 years of Hollywood music has become too heavily reliant on rhythmic minimalism. Yeah it’s great for capturing listener’s attention/subconscious and zombiefying them in the selfsame manner pop music, with its repetitive drum beats, does, and you can write miles of music in a short period of time in this style (which is what is needed in film post-production to get the product to market as fast as possible). But having a simple repetitive rhythmic element destroys the possibility for any equality among all the musical elements (melody, harmony, form, texture, dynamics, time effects, &c.) – it enslaves them, that they all are obligated to capitulate to this driving force, never to exist past immaturity relative to the full potential of the human mind regarding organizing sound in time, and such then confounds any intellectual, or complex architectural development of the music. Further, it’s like living life in a constant state of orgasm, eating only rich desserts and champagne for every meal, never reading a classic literary novel that delves into profound aspects of the human condition, but instead only perfunctory children’s comics, or basing your entire political belief system on short, PR soundbites that garner the perception of wisdom whilst affording the diametric opposite.

    A little under 10 years ago I premiered my serenade for violin and orchestra in the west side of Hollywood, and after the concert, one of Zimmer’s neighbors, who was then the president of the voting comity for the music portion of the British Academy of Film/Television Arts, asked me if I would like for her to recommend me for a spot that had opened up at whatever Zimmer’s operation was called, post-Media Ventures. By then I’d already abandoned my film music writing: every project I had worked on killed my carpel tunnel to the point there was no fun in such, so I had decided to just live inside the realm of classical music in a Charles Ives type fashion. It’s not economic, nor popular, nor avant-garde, but it does reach deeper towards explaining the constellation of elements that comprise the human experience than does the typical film score.

    Here’s something I wrote that depicts a storm or some destructive element of nature. The recording’s pretty dirty as I’m so busy trying to get out of Los Angeles that I don’t have time for proper mixing, but it gets the point across:

    • redskylite Says:

      Awesome presentation, riveting score and combination. Applause from me for adding another useful layer.

      • andrewfez Says:

        Thank you – the slide show I put together was a quick reminder that we’re already dealing with the ramifications of adding 1C to the atmosphere.

  2. redskylite Says:

    Thank heaven for music.

    Joe Bonamassa & Tina Guo – “Woke Up Dreaming” – Live From Carnegie Hall: An Acoustic Evening

  3. indy222 Says:

    Wow – one heck of a kick-a** theme. If the movie’s as good as the music, I’ll be a big fan. I’m seeing it tonight. I’ll give you my thumbs up/down afterwards.

  4. indy222 Says:

    To Andrewfez,
    I agree with much of what you say, but then – it’s almost like you’re advocating for a full musical novel (a’la, if I may, a Rachmaninoff concerto), for film. I just don’t see how it’s appropriate. Much as I love the music of Rachminoff, I could never do ANYTHING else when I am listening to his concertos. They command full mind/body/emotional attention – much less watch a movie and follow plot and dialog. Music in film should evoke the primal appropriate emotions in service of the greater artwork of the film. So, I’m OK with this. Another film who’s music as much makes the film as any acting, is “Jane Eyre” under Cary Fukunaga, which also features piercing string music with a repetitive but very evocative theme.

    • andrewfez Says:

      I prefer the older film scores by actual classical musicians that did all the writing and orchestration. There are still ostinato like qualities at play, but they don’t overwhelm the music in the manner i described above. Lots of scores these days are being written by pop/rock songwriters, like Zimmer and Elfam, who hire teams of underling composers and orchestrators to flush out their ideas, or often write certain cues themselves because the main guys don’t have enough time to do so.


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