Cord Jefferson‘s “American Fiction” is filled with witty dialogue, yet the thematic complexities of the film are such that often the characters still aren’t able to express what they’re really feeling, to each other and even themselves. Yet as the movie veers between satire, family drama, and romance — with a few action beats thrown in for good measure — the tonal balance remains precise and the characters’ feelings — and how we as audience members are supposed to feel about those feelings — are always clearly conveyed. This is largely thanks to one of the movie’s greatest strengths: composer Laura Karpman‘s exquisitely conceived and performed jazz score.
The way in which dialogue and score intertwine and complement each other is no accident; Karpman says she always saw the actors’ voices as part of her ensemble, as she created themes and instrumentation designed to riff on the dialogue and its delivery. “When Jeffrey [Wright] says a line, the sax will play something in response that is really working and dancing with the dialogue,” she told IndieWire, adding that the characters’ voices are “swapping fours” so that their words actually become intertwined with the saxophones and flute. It’s a concept that speaks to the greatness of Karpman’s score; while it sounds improvisational and spontaneous, each note is precisely chosen for maximum expressiveness and emotional impact.
The balance between structural precision…
Read full article: American Fiction Score Used Actors’ Voices as Part of Its Music – IndieWire
The article “American Fiction Score Used Actors’ Voices as Part of Its Music – IndieWire” by Jim Hemphill was published on 05/01/2024 by www.indiewire.com