The Thinking Machine #66

Best Film Music Ever

In their series The Thinking Machine, critics Cristina Álvarez López and Adrian Martin create a new video essay for Filmkrant every month.

One of the most educational “original movie soundtracks” available on CD is Last Tango in Paris – Expanded. Why did Gato Barbieri’s original 1972 album, beloved as one of the greatest jazz scores in cinema, need expanding? Because – like so many soundtrack albums – what it delivered was not the music heard in the film, but a re-recorded and re-arranged performance. The actual ‘cues’ Barbieri composed for Bertolucci are different – and often just a few seconds long. Soundtrack albums have today become a fetish-item. What if we tried to appreciate the art of the cue, and its place within cinema, differently?