Monday, April 23, 2012

And now, something interesting someone else wrote about a work that's represented in my "Ask for Babs" mix: Out of Sight

Here we see Randy Jackson stumbling into J.Lo using the American Idol interns as target practice.
In 2007, film blogger Jeremy Richey, who did several posts for his blog Moon in the Gutter on one of his favorite films, Steven Soderbergh's terrific adaptation of Elmore Leonard's Out of Sight(*), dusted off the grooves of the Out of Sight soundtrack album and did a good track-by-track analysis.

I didn't know Rhys Ifans also composed film scores.
David Holmes

Richey also happens to be a fan of the music of Irish electronica artist/DJ/film composer David Holmes, whose themes from his funky and much-imitated Out of Sight score are featured on the album (Holmes continues to write music for Soderbergh; his most recent Soderbergh film score was for Haywire). When I was picking out tracks for the "Ask for Babs" mix, Holmes' ballerific theme for Don Cheadle's psychotic Out of Sight character Maurice "Snoopy" Miller (on the album, the theme is represented by the track "Rip Rip") was like the first track I had in mind for the mix:
Early promotional material for OUT OF SIGHT had the music of Cliff Martinez listed as the score. Martinez is certainly no slouch as his music for films such as THE LIMEY and especially SOLARIS are among the finest in modern film, but no one else could have scored OUT OF SIGHT like Irish D.J. and musician David Holmes... 
The OUT OF SIGHT album is simultaneously among the great soundtrack albums and the most frustrating. Great, as each Holmes track is astonsihingly inventive and remarkably fresh, but frustrating in that many ques from the film aren't here. Hopefully one day the missing bits will appear, in the meantime let us celebrate the soundtrack we do ingenious mixture of old and new...a cool get together where The Isely Brothers, Walter Wanderly and Dean Martin can hang out partying to the unforgettable grooves of one very 'possessed by genius' Irish DJ... 
RIP, RIP... is another one of the great tracks in Holmes canon. It's a low down keyboard driven bit of hard funk that wouldn't have sounded out of place on any number of Parliament albums from the seventies. The dialogue snatches, featuring Don Cheadle's menacing Snoopy Miller, is used perfectly well here as well... 
The OUT OF SIGHT album would receive rave reviews upon its release, especially in Britain. It would begin one of the most important partnerships between a composer and director in modern cinema, and it deserves to be remembered as one of the best soundtracks of the nineties. The work is currently out of print, although prices for used copies haven't sky rocketed yet. I can't recommend a collection more, NO MORE TIME OUTS alone is worth any price you might pay for it...

(*) Viewers who relish the dark humor and crackerjack dialogue of Justified, the hit TV series based on characters from Elmore Leonard's short story "Fire in the Hole," but have never watched Out of Sight must Netflix(**) the film right away. I wouldn't be surprised if Justified showrunner Graham Yost turned to his crew when they first crafted the pilot and said, "You know Out of Sight? That's how you bring Leonard's writing to the screen."

(**) Karen Sisco, the TV series that starred a perfectly cast Carla Gugino and Robert Forster in the daughter-and-father roles played by Jennifer Lopez and Dennis Farina in Out of Sight, is long overdue for a DVD release. I wish Shout! Factory rescued Karen Sisco from DVD limbo.

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