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“Skyline”
a review by Darby O’Gill

A movie about an all-out alien attack… How can that be bad? Don’t worry, it is. You know how most movies like this usually suck because they over do the storylines, and have a bunch really bad clichéd relationships? Well, Skyline has none of that. No, really. I’m not kidding. There is like no storyline to this movie what so ever. We don’t know what’s happing from beginning to end, and I kind of the think the filmmakers didn’t either. This movie is total chaos. You would almost think that this was a sequel with the lack of information being given, as if we had already been given the back story in a previous installment. For those of you that might have enjoyed this movie. Yes, I do realize there is a story to Skyline. But, I mean… Come on! Really?! I’m not going to give anything away, but come on! Here’s another tip for you. When you want the audience to be surprised, and maybe not see something coming… Don’t show all those things in the tailer! I’m not kidding, every time the tension builds-up, you quickly realize, “Oh, I know what’s going to happen here, because I’ve already seen it in the trailer.” Nice work guys.

Now, this is where I would normally give you a brief description of what happens in the movie, but unfortunately Skyline doesn’t have a story. Here’s the best I’ve got, aliens attack, humans hide, then they run, hide some more, run, die, run… Okay, so I guess I can put it into words. To be honest, that’s probably more then there was written in the actual script. I know it seems like I’m being harsh, but… I’m not. It makes Sharktopus look like Gandhi. Wow, I don’t think I can actually say anything good about this movie. Wait, that’s not true. The score was fantastic! Of course, I’m a little bias. I’m friends with the composer, and it’s probably safe to say it’s the only reason I went to see Skyline. It gets a little drowned out by the special effects at times, but when it gets to shine, it does just that. The cue when the first air strike arrives is really nice. See! I can say something nice. Let’s see, maybe there something else nice to say… How about this? Skyline isn’t the worst movie of the year. It’s got Jonah Hex to thank for that. I don’t think I can recommend seeing Skyline, but I highly recommend picking up my friend Matt’s CD. You can get a copy here, or download it on iTunes.

Rating:


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Our friends over at La-La Land Records have announced three special releases, available at their booth at this years San Diego’s Comic Con. The first of which is John Debney‘s Predators, which skillfully incorporates Alan Silvestri’s iconic themes from the original Predator film. Next is a special two disc set of Danny Elfman‘s Batman, this a Limited Edition of 5,000 units, and features the previously unreleased film version of Elfman’s score, as well as a remastered presentation of the original 1989 soundtrack score, and never-before-released Bonus Tracks. Last but not least, is a Limited Edition of James Horner‘s Krull, which is limited to only 3,000 units, so act fast! All three recordings will be available at www.lalalandrecords.com on July 27th, after Comic Con, but those of you at the Con will be able to get first dibs. In addition to these premiere releases, there will also be special appearances and signings, as well as great deals on other La-La Land Records soundtracks available at their booth, which is located with the Toy Hungry booth, in space #429.

Guest composers will be stopping by the La-La Land booth to greet fans and sign CDs. Newly Emmy Award nominated composer Bear McCreary (Caprica, Battlestar Galactica, Human Target) will kick things off from 4-5PM on Thursday. Visit the La-La Land gang at Comic-Con to find out who will be appearing to sign autographs and when. Also, be sure to  follow La-La Land Records & Darby’s Secret Stash on Twitter for breaking news at Comic Con, including information about special composer guests and signing times!

Our friends over at La-La Land Records, have  just released another two scores, well three actually, which makes it an even better deal!

First up is a combo album which features the scores of not only one, but two classic Mike Judge movies, Office Space & Idiocracy. Composer John Frizzell finds the perfect offbeat musical pitch for Judge’s beloved workplace satire Office Space, starring Ron Livingston, Gary Cole and Jennifer Aniston, while composer Theodore Shapiro goes for a big orchestral sound and nails Judge’s skewed sci-fi take on the future of the human race, in Idiocracy, starring Luke Wilson, Dax Shepard and Maya Rudolph. Produced by MV Gerhard and mastered by James Nelson, this engaging duo of film scores showcases the composing talent involved in effectively scoring smart satire. Extensive liner notes by Daniel Schweiger feature comments from the composers and writer/director Mike Judge. This is a limited edition of 1,200 units, so get your flair on and pick one up today! Guaranteed to give you an instant “Oh-Face.”

ORDER Office Space / Idiocracy: Limited Edition NOW and get your CD autographed by composers John Frizzell and Theodore Shapiro at no additional charge. Autographs are while supplies last and are not guaranteed.

Next up we have the original motion picture score to 20th Century Fox’s hit feature film Diary of a Wimpy Kid starring Zachary Gordon, Robert Capron, Rachel Harris and Steve Zahn, directed by Thor Freudenthal. Acclaimed composer Theodore Shapiro fashions a brilliant orchestral score that beautifully conveys all the heartwarming fun of this new family film classic, based upon the popular book series by Jeff Kinney. Produced by Theodore Shapiro and mastered by James Nelson, Diary of a Wimpy Kid is movie music fun for all ages. Get yours today!

ORDER Diary of a Wimpy Kid NOW and get your CD autographed by composer Theodore Shapiro at no additional charge. Autographs are while supplies last and are not guaranteed.

NEW RELEASE SPECIAL: Order Office Space/Idiocracy now and get Diary of a Wimpy Kid at a special sale price of only $9.98. When ordering Office Space/Idiocracy, you will be asked at checkout if you wish to get Diary of a Wimpy Kid at the sale price. This is a limited time offer, so be sure to act fast!


Hey everybody, I wanted to let you all know about this great company that releases limited edition CDs of film scores. They’re called La-La Land Records and have been bringing hard to find, and never before released movie & television scores to the masses for the last seven years! Each CD features a wonderful booklet with photos and original art, as well as personal notes from the composers, directors, producers, actors and historians.

Here are a few of their current releases:

I’m happy to say that we will be announcing all the upcoming La-La Land Record releases here at the Stash, and also possibly doing a few giveaways as well. So, be sure to keep an eye out for those!

Until then head over and check out their full catalog here.

“Pirate Radio/The Boat That Rocked”
a review by Darby O’Gill

Hands down, the feel good movie of the year! Before Howard Stern, and even before Wolfman Jack, a band of rogue deejays rocked the airwaves. In 1966, at the height of the British Invasion, rock and roll was only allowed to be played on British radio stations for barely two hours a week. The only way people in the U.K. could listen to rock or pop music was by tuning into pirate radio stations broadcasting from boats just off the coast of Britain in the North Sea. In Pirate Radio, previously released as The Boat That Rocked, earlier this year in the U.K., writer/director Richard Curtis tells a fictional story based on the true events of Britain’s rock and roll revolution. Broadcasting live 24/7 from an old tanker turned makeshift radio station, anchored just outside British jurisdiction, is a band of misfit deejays known as Radio Rock.

The story begins when Young Carl is sent by his mother to the ship known as Radio Rock, to spend time with his godfather Quentin, the owner of the radio station, who is played by the always brilliant Bill Nighy. It’s very much a coming of age story, and I think the British equivalent to Cameron Crowe’s Almost Famous. Once on board, Young Carl meets the motley crew of deejays. There’s The Count, the flagship American deejay that is constantly pushing the envelope and crossing the line, masterfully portrayed by Philip Seymour Hoffman. There’s the always charismatic, and at times narcissistic Doctor Dave, played by the extremely funny Nick Frost. Another familiar face is that of Flight of the Concords’ manager Brian, actor Rhys Darby, who plays the self proclaimed funny man Angus “the nut” Nutsford. Even though all the faces may not be familiar, this is truly an all-star cast. Each performance is so masterfully executed that you can’t help but feel the authenticity of this film. However, I think one of the most unsung heroes of this film is Ike Hamilton, who plays Harold, the ship’s booth technician. If you watch Ike’s performance throughout the film, I guarantee that you will be totally blown away. Every little nuance that he brings to the character of Harold just radiates brilliantly off the screen. If you’re reading this after you have already seen the film, I highly recommend seeing it again for Ike’s performance alone. But, if you’re anything like me you’ll already want to see this movie again regardless.

The other side of this story is that of the British government and their efforts to stop the pirate radio ships from broadcasting. This task is helmed by Sir Alistair Dormandy, played by Kenneth Branagh, and his new assistant Mr. Twatt. I’m not kidding, his last name is Twatt. And, yes Richard Curtis takes full advantage of it. Twatt is played by Coupling‘s Jack Davenport. Now, don’t worry. The political stuff doesn’t weigh down the story at all. Mostly because it’s not an overpowering plotline and it also lends itself to some of the film’s funnier scenes. I dare you not to laugh or at least snicker every time Dormandy says, “Twatt.”

Richard Curtis has, as always, done a masterful job telling this story. His unique vision, and heart warming style of storytelling, makes Pirate Radio/The Boat That Rocked a must see film. Every part of this film oozes 1966. The wardrobe is fantastic, the soundtrack is to die for, and even the look of the film itself sets the tone. It’s almost as if the film was shot and processed in 1966. Adding to the film’s authenticity, the bulk of the movie was shot onboard an actual ship, just off the south coast of England. Richard Curtis’ first cut of the film had a running time that was just over three hours. The final cut of The Boat That Rocked had a two hours and fifteen minute running time, where as the final cut for Pirate Radio has a one hour and fifty-six minute running time. I’ve seen the U.K. version of the film and enjoy both cuts, but I have to say this film is so enjoyable that I wouldn’t mind sitting though the three hour cut at some point. Most of the missing scenes from the first cut of the film appear on the U.K. DVD release of The Boat That Rocked. (U.K. DVD review will be posted soon) The two major scenes that were cut from The Boat That Rocked for the U.S. release of Pirate Radio consists of a visit to the Radio Rock ship from a large group of contest winners, and the other is the unseen stag party in London. The scenes aren’t necessarily needed, but this movie is so, as I said before, enjoyable that I don’t think you could ever get enough of these characters.

I realize this review is quickly becoming a mini-novel, but I think I would be crucified if I didn’t at least talk about the music in the film. As you would imagine, this movie is chock-full of classic rock from the likes of The Who, The Kinks, The Turtles, and so many more. Both the U.K. release, and the U.S. release of the soundtrack feature a two disc edition with 36 tracks to take you back. Also, the opening credit graphics are fantastic! The use of the radio tuner dial transitioning from scene to scene, as The Kinks’ “All Day and All of the Night” blares, instantly sucks you into the world of the movie. But, I think one of my favorite things was the use of the album covers in the end credits. It not only instills you with a fantastic sense of the history of rock and roll, but it also makes you want to listen to some great albums you might not have listened to in awhile. The bottom line here should be obvious at this point, but needless to say I highly recommend this movie no matter which version you see.

Rating:

5 Little People