Torn Curtain, Hitchcock’s 1966 classic starring Paul Newman and Julie Andrews, has slowly become one of my favorite Hitchcock films, in no small part due to John Addison’s riveting soundtrack. Released by Decca the same year, this 12-track record clocks in at just under 30 mins, and serves as a perfect mini adventure for the ears as well as the imagination. If you haven’t watched it in while, I suggest taking some time during the holiday, and if you find a copy of the soundtrack on vinyl, I highly recommend picking it up.
Let us, on the 13th day of August in the year of our Lord, 2015, give homage and respect to Mr. Henry Mancini and his unforgettable and ravishing work on the 1963 film, Charade. Often touted as “the best Hitchcock movie that Hitchcock never made” (by uncredited sources), Charade is a forceful little tart of a film with just the proper amount of Cary Grant schtick spliced with just the right amount of 1963 Technicolor Audrey Hepburn. It’s great for a nonchalant Thursday viewing, but doesn’t measure up to any of the Sunday Hitchcock classics. None of this, however, in any way takes away from the overpowering Henry Mancini brilliance. Good day.
Music to Be Murdered By is a wonderfully classic collection of dangerously looming, and anxiously unsettling orchestral music that forces you, the listener, to constantly check over your shoulder, in the back of the broom closet, and under your bed for the unknown assailant of your own demise.
Hitch himself offers a brief, and humorous intro to each track, much in the way he introduced his classic, Alfred Hitchcock Presents program. This is quite certainly, perfect music for late night, candlelit rendezvous where two people enter… and only on person leaves.
If you ever run across this album, don’t think twice about picking it up. It was a wonderful birthday gift to me, and well worth a spin by any fan of Hitch, records, or murder in general.
The Story of Star Wars is one that is told by children of all ages. It’s an epic tale, full of grandeur and swash buckling angry men. It’s older than I am and can be heard from the mouths of babes echoing throughout every galaxy known to man. This 1977 picture disc featuring the Dark Lord of the Sith is a hurried version of that award winning tale. It is narrated by the late Roscoe Lee Browne, who you may recognize from Alfred Hitchcock’s Topaz, Logan’s Run and his role as Saunders, the Tates’ butler from Soap after Benson left to star in his own sitcom.
The Story of Star Wars had been previously released in non-picture disc form and features the modeling of two classic droids, one Astromech and one Protocol (I don’t need to take a picture, you’ve seen it).
Produced by George Lucas (no surprise there), this version comes with a small warning on the back sleeve which states: NOTICE: If played excessively the sound quality of this limited edition collectors’ item may not equal the original album previously released in a jacket bearing different artwork.
Basically, it’s a pretty picture record that skips a lot.