Synthesizers in the Movies, embedded below, is an hour-long documentary that looks at the history of synthesizers and electronic instruments being used on film soundtracks.
The video comes from a three-part BBC documentary series, Sound of Cinema: The Music That Changed The Movies. Composer Neil Brand hosts the series.
The documentary features some great examples of electronic and synthesized film scores. The highlights, though, are the composer interviews and the historic footage of them at work.
Synthesizers In The Movies
Neil tells the story of how the 1956 science fiction film Forbidden Planet ended up with a groundbreaking electronic score that blurred the line between music and sound effects, and explains why Alfred Hitchcock’s The Birds has one of the most effective soundtracks of any of his films – despite having no music. He shows how electronic music crossed over from pop into cinema with Midnight Express and Chariots of Fire, while films like Apocalypse Now pioneered the concept of sound design – that sound effects could be used for storytelling and emotional impact.
Neil tracks down some of the key composers behind these innovations to talk about their work, such as Vangelis (Chariots of Fire, Blade Runner), Carter Burwell (Twilight, No Country for Old Men) and Clint Mansell (Requiem for a Dream, Moon).