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    The Bernstein Effect

    Posted by Mike Finnegan on

    Born 94 years ago today, film, stage and classical composer Elmer Bernstein (1922-2004) wrote melodies so intertwined with our cherished memories of favorite movies – among them grandiose period epics, emblematic Westerns, uproarious comedies, florid romances, tender character studies, ominous thrillers, imaginative fantasies and one screen musical (Thoroughly Modern Millie, for which the 14-time Academy Award® nominee won his only Oscar®) – that he would surely command many play-slots on the cinematic jukebox of your dreams. His output, impact and influence are duly noted in movie music historian Jon Burlingame’s spot-on Film Music Society appreciation here: Twilight Time proudly supports Bernstein’s large legacy via six hi-def Blu-ray releases that each have either an Isolated Score or Music-and-Effects Track enabling aficionados to savor his work: Birdman of Alcatraz (1962), Devil in a Blue Dress (1995), From the Terrace (1960), Hawaii (1966), Kings Go Forth (1958) and The World of Henry Orient (1964). The variety and versatility demonstrated in this particular sextet of scores is breathtaking, with lyrical motifs ranging from plaintive to playful, racy to romantic, thunderous to tragic, all in service of the characters, period and directorial vision at hand. Another noteworthy and long-awaited Bernstein title arrives on TT Blu-ray this fall. In the meantime, spin your own favorite disc for a Bernstein Birthday Bravo!