The score to "Passion of Joan of Arc"

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After having watched the DVD three times and liking the film marginally less and less each time, I'm beginning to wonder if I reacted positively to the film the first time I watched it or if it was the Voices of Light score that impressed me most. Has anyone else had similar reactions, not necessarily with Passion?

The next I watch the DVD, I'm considering leaving the score off. Is such an idea folly?

Finally, what is your opinion of adding onto a film something that, in the chronological order of events, is extremely divorced from the film itself, esp. with a silent film? (Of course, that shouldn't matter at all vis-a-vis enjoying the film, and also the live musical accompaniment of early silents.)

Leee Smith (Leee), Thursday, 8 January 2004 20:03 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

the only time i saw this was with the sound turned way low (it was late and everyone else in the room was asleep) and it was a bit underwhelming to be honest. i know it's a classic and all, but if you're not in the mood for it it's pretty much just one agonized closeup after another. i actually preferred dreyer's "day of wrath," which i watched under similar circumstances.

J.D. (Justyn Dillingham), Friday, 9 January 2004 00:56 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

short answer: the visions of light thing is awful. it's a mediocre oratorio to begin with, but it suits the film not at all to my mind. perhaps it has attracted more people to the film, but i wonder at what expense?

the film had an original score upon its 1929 release which is supposed to be quite good, but i've never heard it and it's rarely revived. in his later years dreyer said he'd prefer that people see the film without any soundtrack at all (perhaps this was a reaction to the sonarized lo duca version that was then in common circulation?). given the choice between visions of muck and silence i much prefer silence. but i'd really like an opportunity to hear the 1928/29 score. criterion fudged this one by not including it.

amateur!st (amateurist), Tuesday, 13 January 2004 09:56 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

i'm generally adverse to these (anachronistic?) couplings of silent films with various contemporary soundscapes, from new music oratorios to drum n bass to cat power to what have you--not on principle, but because nine times out of ten the results are close to dire and certainly don't do any justice to the film being accompanied.

amateur!st (amateurist), Tuesday, 13 January 2004 09:57 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

So, if you take amateurist at his word, you've totally ruined the film for yourself forever, the damage undoable. No matter. It's not even among the five best films Dreyer directed. (Well, I guess it might be the fifth-best, but I do cherish Master of the House so.)

certainly don't do any justice to the film being accompanied

or the music, to be fair... At any rate, whatever piece of shit is on my Man with a Movie Camera DVD is to be muted.

Eric H. (Eric H.), Tuesday, 13 January 2004 10:56 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

aarrrgh the alloy orchestra don't get me started! they are goddam abomination

amateur!st (amateurist), Tuesday, 13 January 2004 11:04 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

fourteen years pass...

Saw a version of this tonight in a freezing church with an "early music" choir. I'm fairly certain I haven't seen it before (and hadn't realised it is considered a "classic") but bits of it seemed familiar. Is there another context I might have seen parts? (I wonder if images have been used on a record sleeve or similar??)

djh, Friday, 9 February 2018 00:23 (one year ago) Permalink

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