3 Needles [Three needles] (2005)
Director: Thom Fitzgerald
No CD soundtrack released
"You killed me for $800."
Music clip 1, 0'13"
(163Kb) [China, 1:01'01"]
Music clip 2, 1'02" (734Kb) [Seeking help in China, 1:25'25"]
Music clip 3, 1'25" (980Kb) [Borrowing blood, Montreal, 1:36'30"]
Music clip 4, 0'59" (693Kb) [South Africa, 2:00'10"]
Director Thom Fitzgerald has quite a track record for producing thought-provoking character-led films, normally touching on homosexual/AIDS themes outwardly, but below that getting to the strengths or weaknesses within normal people in extraordinary circumstances. He has worked with Christophe Beck previously on Wolf Girl (a.k.a. Bloom moon) and The Event, but this is an altogether more ambitious project, spanning three very different locations - rural China, a village in South Africa, and Montreal - and covering storylines of two people in each. Their connection is only through blood and its implications for money, survival and of course disease. Although it takes an incredibly slow pace the switching between such different stunningly shot locations and dedicated acting talent keep one rivetted, and even though the outcomes are relatively predictable, the connection and approaching journey is far from lazy. Not quite the powerful and gripping life-epic it aspired to be, but not weak or boring either, and it does better than most AIDS movies to make its message universal. *
Chris Beck and Trevor Morris's score is very muted and attempts to lie between traditional music and the occasional background pop. Their forces appear to be limited mostly to synthesized strings with harp (one motif given to this instrument is used invariably for the nuns) and a wind performer. The absence of music is mostly a contributor to the feeling of reality and loneliness we are to be impressed with, but it is the reviewer's impression that its understatedness is heavily detrimental to some of the more potentially impressionable events towards the end of the movie. At two hours this film really needed some rooted music to give it a unified core but themes are not easy to recognise, not least due to being held low in the mix. The occasional orchestral swell, particularly with the more meaningful voiceovers and events could arguably have transformed the film. Still, this was presumably a directorial decision and perhaps more indulgence of non-diegetic music would have polluted the purity of the life-message that Fitzgerald was trying to communicate.
It is difficult to define where the boundaries of Chris Beck and Trevor Morris's joint effort on the score are set. Morris's main credits are for television work with his more prestigious film entries for additional music to Hans Zimmer's projects. His individual style is therefore difficult to define.
Traditional Chinese music is often used rather than score for scenes in this country.
The end credits (also the DVD titles) use the song "The motion" by Rick Kurek rather than a reprisal of score music.
Degrees of Beck
Thom Fitzgerald also directed Wolf Girl and The Event, both films scored by Christophe Beck.
Music composed by Christophe Beck, Trevor Morris
Music editor - Sean Dougall
Music supervisor - Scott Brion
*(However, if one is feeling less generous, the intreguing sense that very individual storylines will be drawn inexorably together is arguably gradually overtaken by the feeling that there is a decided lack of drama to the whole plot. What should be by turns intimate, beautiful, and horrifying fails to engage the audience - flat camera angles reduce jawdropping scenery to bland picture postcard, quirky personalities are muted and crushed by Dukakis' motherly voiceovers, and cruelty is delivered brisk and pointless without thought provoking narrative undercurrent. Had this been a documentary it would have been passable if not too informative, but as a 'message' movie it fails in its mission both to entertain and ask questions of the viewer.)