Patrick F. Taylor Library--Ogden
Clint Maedgen and Helen Gillet
September 26, 2009
BY JASON SONGE
Never to be re-created again, local musicians Clint Maedgen and Helen Gillet played a live score to the movie "Deliverance" at The Ogden Museum's Patrick F. Taylor library Saturday night. The score was commissioned by The Ogden, and it fit wonderfully into the movie.
At some points, the musicians confidently covered dialogue in order to increase anxiety and foreboding. The most prominent musical piece seemed to appear when characters were travelling, whether in car to the river or actually canoeing on a dangerous stretch. The milder version included a cold bed of nervous electronic percussion covered by ominous cello. The FUBAR version included that base augmented with errant theremin noises and overall nervous noise that made the movie more fun to watch. And in the case of the rape scene, more difficult. But, in a great way. The music got me deeper into that moment when Jon Voight is waiting for Burt Reynolds to shoot his arrow.
I appreciate that the incorporation of the music was so well thought out and prepared. There was purpose to each piece, as exhibited when music ended on a perfect beat, maybe right before talking began again. And also, it never sounded like the music was being performed live. It just seemed to be connected to the film. There was definite precision going on.
The movie has been accused of being slow, so I was happy when a song sung by Helen Gillet helped to move along the film when Jon Voight was seeking out one of the killers. Gillet's voice was beautiful, and if I remember correctly, the slightly hopeful(at least sounding) song was a nice juxtaposition to maybe the most hopeless part of the movie. What, this guy, who we've already been shown can't fire a bow--he's gonna climb upwards, leaving himself open to attack at all times, towards the killer waiting above? A longshot.
I enjoyed how Maedgen and Gillet slowed down dialogue to create a disorienting effect and how they used director's commentary in places for educational and humorous purposes.