Here in Italy it’s still a fixture on late-night TV and on the shelves of what were VHS stores and are now DVD outlets, even though 25 years have gone by since the Dino De Laurentis Corporation – with a budget of $2.5 million in 1982 – produced this cinematographic gem, inserting it chronologically following John Carpenter’s Halloween (1978). It is probably this connection that enabled the film, directed by Tommy Lee Wallace, former set designer for Halloween, to gross nearly 15 million dollars.
The film was technically a box office success, but the critics, contrary to my personal opinion, remained harsh and negative, most of all those who expected to see more of John Carpenter’s direction and Michael Myers, with kitchen knife in hand, carving up characters before they had time to scream. At first, this expectation distracts one’s attention from the terrifying yet fascinating story in which advanced technology is applied to Gaelic rituals drawn out of diabolical shadows.
Although somewhat dated and not entirely free of defects, the principal points of interest in this film lie in its superior cinematography – in Panavision Anamorphic format 2.35:1 processed by Technicolor, by accomplished Director of Photography Dean R. Cundey, ASC, who also take care of the previous two installments of the series – capable of immerging one in not only visual but tangible sensations, like the insalubrious humidity that the characters breathe in that Halloween night, a feeling supported by the convincing performance of the actors, above all a splendid Dan O’Herlihy in the role of Druid Conal Cochran; the able direction of Tommy Lee Wallace (Fright Night II), capable of stirring up and enlivening the scenographic landscape of Nigle Kneale’s script; and above all the evocative, even mesmorizing soundtrack, composed by John Carpenter in association with Alan Howarth, once again using the best technology available at the time, setting themselves apart as pioneers with new methods and ideas that work.
On the occasion of the 25th anniversary of the film, directly from his production studio in La La Cañada, a suburb of Los Angeles, Alan Howarth, former sound designer, composer and editor, collaborating with James Nelson of Digital Outland in Tacoma for Editing and Masterization, assembled and produced a limited release of 1000 copies of the soundtrack containing all of the tracks previously omitted in the MCA 6115 vinyl and Varese Sarabande VSD 5243 CD editions, both of which became collectors’ items and the objects of hot auctions involving hundreds of dollars on eBay.
In the summer of 1982 at Pi West Electronic Music Studio in Glendale (Los Angeles), the score of Halloween III was performed using Linn LM-1, an electronic musical instrument with a unique sound, programmable with an internal mixer with 13 channels capable of reproducing rhythms that imitated the sounds of drums and other percussion instruments. Many of these samples contain repetitious tones above the Nyquist frequency, a defect which creates in them a unique crackling sound, characteristic of the analog polyphonic synthesizers Prophet-10W and 5W Poly Sequencer (1978) and Sequential Circuits Programmer Mdl 700 (from the mid-70’s), running on microprocessor CMOS logic technology with RAM driven 6-bit or 5-octave 0-5V DC Control Voltages, which occupy important places in the history of synthesizers.
Defining the sound was the A.R.P. Sequencer 1601, loaded with sixteen sliders for each tuning step with which the user can program voltage controls that can be emitted in not only one line of sixteen steps but also in two simultaneous independent 8-step lines (a and b); in this way it’s possible to realize one line of melody and an accompanying harmony track or to manage accent notes using the voltage controls on the filter or the amplifier, all this combined with the famous and infamous ARP Avatar, an expensive guitar-controlled synthesizer produced in 1977 by Alan R. Pearlman, which in its time of fledgling analog/digital hybrid technology had more than a few problems, in the translation from frequency to voltage, in the delay of the emission of synthetic notes, and last but not least, an extreme sensitivity to every imprecision in the guitarist’s playing, like it’s particular tendency to yodel every time the level dropped below the sensitivity threshold of the detention circuit.
These instruments, often used by artists such as Heaven 17, WCO, Jean-Michelle Jarre, Todd Rundgreen, Art of Noise, Peter Gabriel, Rick Wakeman, Vangelis, Gas Chamber Orchestra and Tangerine Dream, are in a difficult period of audio engineering, experimental and at times defect-ridden, sometimes spurious or almost subliminal, but the soundtrack of HALLOWEEN III includes 25 tracks that flow nicely like part of a well-oiled machine, perfect to listen to in its melodies and frequencies.
As for noteworthy songs, we begin with the MAIN TITLE, recorded in 2 stages, rhythmically introduced before the images and then successively modified with electronic samplings to synchronize it with the electric pumpkin that is appearing on the screen, thereby embracing the style or, rather, the melodic mood of what will be Halloween III, which continues in the track called H3 CLOSE / OPEN. CHARIOTS OF PUMPKINS follows closely, in sync with the tail melody of the Main Title (which is also used in the End Titles), and highlights the race as Harry Grimbridge (Al Berry) attempts to flee from gray suited man, who later take his life in a memorable scene set within the walls of a hospital. That scene is elevated by the beautiful HEY BOOM, a piece that shows Carpenter and Howarth’s ability to improvise, compositionally and creatively; a piece in which the only rule is not to have rules. This was facilitated by the use of a system of synchronicity in which the film was transferred to a time coded videotape and synchronized to a 24-track master audio recorder, thus allowing them to compose the music for the visual images. The entire process, which Carpenter called, “A musical Electronic Coloring Book,” went quickly and offered “instant gratification,” allowing the composers to evaluate the score in sync with the film’s images, and this was an incalculable advantage in the advent years of digital Sequencers and Samplers.
MASK TEST ONE is another piece of absolute ambient beauty in it’s foreshadowing of the fate of the Kupfer Family, while WHERE IS SHE and IT WILL SOON BE MORNING are effectively an extended play of HELLO GRANDMA, which forms the backdrop of the capture of Doctor Challis, after fighting a Man in Gray and uncovering his robot nature.
Clearly a work that has become popular or even acquired a cult following, a work that is sought-after by collectors that can finally enjoy in it’s totality the achievement of John Carpenter and Alan Howarth, who deserve credit goes for not forgetting those memorable times and those who lived them.
I N S T R U M E N T S
The Album The Bonus Tracks
1 Main Title 2:55 13 Hey Boom 3:34
2 Chariosts of Pumkins 3:24 14 Mask Test One 1:46
3 Drive to santa Mira 2:29 15 I really Love this 1:28
4 Starker and Marge 1:53 16 Local Boy,No Way 1:28
5 First Chase 3:09 17 The Factory 0:45
6 Robots at the Factory 2:00 18 I think its Time 1:43
7 Halloween Montage 1:38 19 The Man Who Killed 2:01
8 Hello Grandma 4:53 20 A pleasure doing business 3:37
9 The Rock 3:25 21 Halloween III Close/Open 2:41
10 Challis Escape 3:30 22 Where is She 3:30
11 South Corridor 2:58 23 It will morning Soon 2:43
12 Goodbye Ellie 4:09 24 Stonehenge 3:28
25 I do Love A good Joke 3:20
Total Running time 67:55
The Keep Set, Alex Thomson standing on right
Sir Alex Thomson,born in London UK 12 jan 1929, was President of the BSC in 1981/1982,Golden (but desaturated to shining Silver) years where he recived an Academy Award Nomination for John Boorman’s Excalibur(1981) and later won the BSC award for best cinematography with Ridley Scott’s Legend(1985) All stared on 1946 at the now-defunct Denham studios ,began work as Clapper boy for So Well Remembered shoot by Freddie Young,then later he stayed at Denham under the aegis of some of best cinematographers in the industry until 1951,then moved at camera dept. of Technicolor ltd. on 3-strip cameras working on such diverse films as Richard III with Laurence Oliver acting and Directing. He Left Technicolor when 3-strip became obsolete and began as a freelance camera operator,forming a long association with the then cinematographer and now respected director Nicolas Roeg,which he earned a BSC Award with Eureka. His first film as Director of Photography was Clive Donner’s Here We Go Round the Mulberry Bush,he went on photograph another 53 pictures,among them Cimino’s Year of the Dragon,Fincher’s Alien3 & Harlin’s Cliffhanger until his retirement on 2001. On 1983 was called by Michael Mann on Shepperton Studios and on locations in Llechwedd & Llanberis’s Gwynedd North Wales’s slate quarry for the production of supernatural gothic thriller THE KEEP.
Wales , Lake The Keep Opening Scene Location
This underrated “state of mind” masterpiece keep in its inner soul a state of art cinematography by Alex Thomson BSC ,that collaborating with De Luxe labs made a milar stone of Anamorphic System.The Keep,nominated on 1984 at Saturn Award for Best Film, was shot on Joe Dunton Camera’s 35BLIII and lenses with anamorphics which are based on Cooke optics 2s & 3s,the focal lenghts was;25mm T2.3 ,32mm T2.3 , 40mm T2.3 , 50mm T2.3 ,75mm T2.8, 100mm T2.8, 152mm T3.5, 203mm T4.5, 40-200mm Cooke Zoom T 4.5, 50-500mm T5.6 Cooke.These lenses are called “Xtal Express Series” ,this formula is still used today as happended in movies like “Kinsey” ,“The Interpreter” & “Guardians of the Galaxy” .
In 2002 he recived the society’s Lifetime Achievment Award for outstanding contribution to the art of Cinematography;Alex Thomson a great man an outstanding Artist passed away on Thursday 14th June 2007 at St.Peter’s Hospital;Chertsey at age of 78
(c)Fabio Pirovano Sources: Guild of British Camera Technicians
Obituary supported by Kodak Plus Cameraimage
THE KEEP -ALEX THOMSON B.S.C TRIBUTE-
MORE ABOUT THE SOUNDTRACK https://soundcloud.com/fabiopirovano/it-ends-tangerine-dream
Fan’s Poster by IMDB Namo5 User(Dillinger’s pict supply/suggested by myself)
Johnny Deep and Michael Mann
Shot from Public Enemies’s set Chris Bale as Melvin Purvis
Public Enemies is Shot by Dante Spinotti ASC on F23 Sony Cinealta Technology,featured 2/3″ CCD with Wide color gamut 14 bit Analog Digital Converter;used firstly by Spinotti on Clairmont System in to Michael Mann ‘s Nike commercial (Leave Nothing )that camera can obtain sharper denser image with considerable dynamic color range. The F23 capture at chroma subsampling 4:4:4 1920×1080 but work also at 60 fps with 4:2:2 settings and can be linked to HDcam SR for record image.Really a first class camera with a stunning sensivity without expense of noise if compared to other cameras of this category,the real sign that we’re reached a turning point to maturity on Digital Cinematography
Lightings work; The Sun shine in cops office The pre-production’s work about the look was quite complex ,Dante approach to HD was really intresting supported by Michael Mann that was fascinated by test results.There was a lot of night work also on ext.locations;for interioros was tested some unique lighting techniques as been used as 12’x12′ frame strung with x-mas lights to create large source with multiple highlights,then added grid to the backsidfe for a very subtle ambient bouce(Same technique used on Deception).There was a test on computer tweeked the sodium vapor OUT,many of that kind of light come from available location’s lights,tests over panavison,canon,fujinon,zeiss and angnenieux lenses centred on colour tweeking and simple definition test,headlight’s car test and polarized filter tests by Rosco that does windows; “Constant fussing with hard gels over windows and changing out various strengths of ND filters won’t be part of your shooting regimen if you buy into Rosco View” The two-part system consists of a wide-width polarizer filter in gel form and a matching optical-glass polarizer camera filter. Using the two together, you can control exterior brightness as seen through windows without affecting the lighting and exposure within the studio or set. By simply rotating the camera filter, you can change the degree of cross-polarization viewable on the window where Rosco View gel filter is placed. Rosco claims you’ll have only one stop of compensation at the camera. Then the Production used various gels packs to mimic every different light quality know to man,from sodium vapor,to sodium HOT,to fluoro green/blue/red/orange/yellow,to day light early/mid/late,to moonlight,to incandescent,halogen,very different source for understand the way for weight the light and his response on HD. In the name of “Chaos Mean Cash” Camera test been close to 16 Hrs a day,expecially concering makeup test over actors. A stunning Gunfight by nite shadowed by a oscillating tree under only a sodium lamp in Chicago’s alley is the pure example how this time our authors go-ahead with HD and its capability to keep details in low lights levels.
After Briefing , Dante Spinotti up First on Letf and Johnny Deep below greet fans.. Dante Spinotti Public Enemies
My Music Inspired by Public Enemies edit on cdr,just for fun…
- Cavallino BRIAN ENO
- Rachel Song VANGELIS
- One More Kiss Dear VANGELIS
- La Vie En Rose EDITH PIAF
- The Way it is NICOLE ATKINS
- Somewherenothere ALPHA
- Gray Cloud Over N.Y. PHILIP GLASS
- Albine ALI FARKA TOURE’
- Romance Anonimo – Forbidden Games NARCISO YEPES
- Dance of the Knights OP. 64 PROKOFIEV
- 1% Of Monster MOGWAI
- Oort MURCOF
- Ruido MURCOF
- O Fortuna Carmina Burana OROFF
- Requiem “Dies Irae” VERDI
- BWV565 J.S. BACH
- Symphonic Interlude cavalleria rusticana MASCAGNI
- Skies for Nash JULY SKIES
- Stop Coming to my house MOGWAI
- Bolero RAVEL
- BELA BARTOK Sonata for Piano Pz 80
- ROGER ENO Fleeting Smile
- LISA GERRARD Space Weaver
MANHATTAN MEMORIES SOUNDTRACK (show at Biograph Theater)
- “The Bad in Every Man (Blue Moon)” (1934) (uncredited) Music by Richard Rodgers Lyrics by Lorenz Hart Sung by Shirley Ross at the Cotton Club Reprised as background music for the death house scene
- “What’s the Matter With Father” (1910) (uncredited) Lyrics by Harry Williams Music by Egbert Van Alstyne Played aboard the steamboat in the first scene
- “Sidewalks of New York” (1894) (uncredited) Music by Charles Lawlor Lyrics by James W. Blake Played aboard the steamboat and danced by the patrons
- “Long, Long Ago” (1883) (uncredited) Written by Thomas Haynes Bayley Played as background music when the 1907 intertitle is shown
- “Academic Festival Overture in C, Opus 80” (uncredited) Written by Johannes Brahms Played as background music when Jim Wade gets his law degree
- “Mary Had a Little Lamb” Traditional children’s melody Played as background music in the montage showing years going by
- “The Man That Broke the Bank at Monte Carlo” (uncredited) Written by Fred Gilbert Played as background music for the first scene in the casino
- “Heart’s Wounds” from “Two Elegiac Melodies, Op. 34” Music by Edvard Grieg Played when Eleanor tells Jim she has to leave him
ORIGINAL MOTION PICTURE SOUNDTRACK
1. Ten Million Slaves – Otis Taylor
2. Chicago Shake – The Bruce Fowler Big Band
3. Drive To Bohemia – Elliot Goldenthal
4. Love Me or Leave Me – Billie Holiday
5. Billie’s Arrest – Elliot Goldenthal
6. Am I Blue? – Billie Holiday
7. Love In The Dunes – Elliot Goldenthal
8. Bye Bye Blackbird – Diana Krall
9. Phone Call To Billie – Elliot Goldenthal
10. Nasty Letter – Otis Taylor
11. Plane To Chicago – Elliot Goldenthal
12. O Guide Me Thou Great Jehova – Indian Bottom Association, Old Regular Baptists
13. Gold Coast Restaurant – Elliot Goldenthal
14. The Man I Love – Billie Holiday
15. JD Dies – Elliot Goldenthal
16. Dark Was The Night, Cold Was The Ground Blind – Willie Johnson
- Label: Decca
- ASIN: B0029LJ982
- PUBLIC ENEMIES DECCA WEBSITE
Music for my ears ,words for my mind(American Cinematographer VOL 90 N°7)My Soundtrack Review
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