NEAR MINT - SEALED
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Alfred Newman's music graced many fine films from the 1940s, '50s and '60s, but none was more celebrated than the classic All About Eve. Directed by Joseph Mankiewicz, Eve starred Bette Davis in her defining role, that of a cantankerous aging starlet. The film was a witty dissection of the backstage lives of a crowd of theater people who find an overly ambitious newcomer wedged into their midst. Packed with more than its share of clever dialogue and relevant statements on relationships, Eve was a smash success with both critics and filmgoers.
In 1950 Newman was fresh off his successes with Prince of Foxes and Twelve O'Clock High. The composer treated Eve with his usual sense of emotional delicacy, but here with a theatrical sense of placement and a chamber-sized scope. The music's warm emotional presence is continually threaded with subtle intertwining details and clever thematic developments. The tone of the writing drifts between bravura fanfares and bittersweet fragility, but Newman cleverly connects everything with a series of interrelated themes that practically "act out" the film independent of the picture. Film Score Monthly's new Golden Age release presents Newman's entire mono score in film order with two cues—including the score's mellifluous finale—repeated in stereo as a bonus.
Coupled with All About Eve is Newman's dark, brooding score to Leave Her to Heaven (1945), a psychological thriller featuring Gene Tierney as a woman violently obsessed with love. This score shows Newman at his most macabre with devilish flute solos and thudding timpani patterns. The main theme is an ominous set of bass chords, making it the perfect flipside to All About Eve's florid writing. Newman's short score is also presented in its entirety and in chronological order.
This Golden Age release marks the first time Newman's classic original recordings have appeared on CD, complete with the unsurpassed 20th Century Fox Studio Orchestra and Newman's inimitable conducting style. Packaging includes a deluxe booklet complete with film stills and liner notes by Doug Adams.