The Surprising Sounds of 'Looper,' with Composer Nathan Johnson

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Saturday, September 29, 2012

Still from the movie 'Looper' Still from the movie 'Looper'

The movie "Looper" gives us a science-fiction action-thriller strong on character and setting, with an intricate time-travel plot. To score the unusual film, composer Nathan Johnson created a virtual orchestra of mechanical and industrial sounds, combined that with unconventional percussion, and even used a few familiar instruments. "Looper" is the third movie Nathan Johnson has scored for his cousin, writer/director Rian Johnson, after earlier collaborations on "Brick" (2005) and "Brothers Bloom"(2008).

Nathan Johnson joins David Garland to talk about creating the amazing sonic world of "Looper," to present highlights from his score, and to describe how the collaboration with his cousin Rian dates back to when they were kids.

"Looper" Score Preview - Part I:

"Looper" Score Preview - Part II:

Comments [4]

Jim Robson from New Jersey

I unfortunately missed most of this episode..Please tell me they played the theme from Dr. Who?

Sep. 29 2012 10:01 PM

I've always loved the soundtrack to The Brothers Bloom and never knew the Brothers Johnson also composed the soundtrack for Looper. Thanks David! By the way, The Brothers Bloom (movie and soundtrack) always makes me cry.

Sep. 29 2012 09:11 PM
Silversalty from Brooklyn

"a very base harpsichord"

I blame Dan Aykroyd.

Sep. 29 2012 07:56 PM
Silversalty from Brooklyn

Very creative work.

New tools to make new sounds for new music. The irony is that traditionally musical instruments were often used to emulate the sounds in and of nature - storms, rainfall, wind, rivers and streams, etc. Street traffic in Gershwin. Here the sounds that can be found in nature are used to make the music for setting psychological moods and tones. But the process is not a new one, even far older than the sound of light sabers clashing being derived from plucking a support cable for a telephone pole (a very base harpsichord?). I was reminded of that with the scene of someone twisting a piece of sheet metal. That's a very old trick used in stage productions to emulate thunder - stage methods brought to modern film and music production.

Sep. 29 2012 11:48 AM

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