LA LA LAND movie Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone

Oscar nominees for Best Original Score 2017

Granted, this post involved travel only insofar as I drove to various movie theaters to watch the Oscar nominated films. That technicality aside, I have to admit there’s something incredibly magical about the way a soundtrack, or even a single song, evokes the essence of a movie years or even decades after you’ve seen the film (I think of Star Wars, Out of Africa, the James Bond films…).

Here is this year’s list of nominees culled from :


Jackie (click on title for trailer)

Music by Mica Levi


La La Land   Music by Justin Hurwitz


Lion  Music by Dustin O’Halloran and Hauschka

Moonlight Music by Nicholas Britell

Passengers  Music by Thomas Newman

Now, I haven’t seen Jackie or Passengers so I can’t offer an opinion on their soundtracks.  However, as much as I like the scores to Lion and Moonlight, I have to cast my vote for La La Land. The melodies are haunting and memorable, and let’s face it, the combination of jazz and upbeat lyrics steals my heart every time I listen.

One notable omission to the list of nominees is the score to Manchester by the Sea, music by Lesley Barber, which was disqualified for nomination by an Academy rule against scores containing pre-existing music.  The score to Manchester does contain music from the Messiah and Ella Fitzgerald & The Inkspots (“I’m Beginning to See the Light”) among others, but the original chorale and operatic compositions should be sufficient to warrant a nomination and a win, in my opinion. This is one restriction that should be dropped.
The box below contains excerpts from the Manchester by the Sea score:


Do you agree with the Academy’s nominees?  And which score do you think will win the Oscar?
Watch the Oscars live on ABC on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2017 at 7:00 p.m. Eastern, 4:00 p.m. Pacific.

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