This is also on the DVD but you don’t get the cool Japanese subtitles.Follow thehunchblog
The songs in Jetlag version of The Hunchback of Notre Dame make the songs in the Disney sequel look like the original Disney version. They’re bad, real bad, absolute awfulness.
In total there are three songs and they are completely shoehorned in movie. The only reason for the songs is that it’s a Jetlag formula to have three songs regardless or not if they fit into that movie. None of the characters sing them and they add nothing to the story hence they are worthless. If they were good songs you could forgive them being thrown in over the beginning, end credits and in a random part in the middle but no they are terrible and random. So let’s start with first song which is called “Pity not Quasimodo” which plays over the opening credits.
Right off the bat it starts with “La Marsellaise” (The National Anthem of France). You can’t throw a famous song like that in. It’s tacky. I guess they were establishing the setting but had there just been an accordion piece composed for the movie it would have been so much better. Sure, an accordion would be an anachronism but it’s not an National Anthem. We’re 7 seconds in and already I’m disgusted.
The lyrics of the song begins with a several of questions that are meant to get the viewers to empathize with Quasimodo. The Questions are;
Have you ever felt out of place?
Have you ever felt like a stranger?
And your clothes were all wrong
And your voice was too loud
If you answered yes to these questions then song suggests that you know how a deformed, deaf, hunchback who has to live apart from society, is a subject of ridicule and was abandon at birth must feel. Really song? Having inappropriate clothes and a loud voice does not often ostracized a person from society.
However, you’re not supposed to pity Quasimodo because he has big heart and the song implies that girl named Esmeralda falls in love with him. 45 seconds and the movie gives away the ending.
In terms of the music I can make out a few cords, a drum and electric piano but the mixing between the vocals and the accompaniment is bad. I can’t really make out if it’s bad or not. But I can tell it’s cheesy and cheap sounding. The vocals, oh the vocals. The guy singing has a thin, raspy, breathy voice. I don’t partially care for this style of voice but at least he can carry a tune and he also had crap to work with.
If you thought the song was uninteresting and lazy well then let’s look at the visuals. The visual are just sets. So we have Notre Dame, the pillory, the city and the dock and that’s it. It’s boring the most exciting thing in the opening is a flag blowing in the breeze. The animation budget was clearly not wasted here.
This introduction is failure. Aside the boring song and the visual that are lazy and boring there is no tone or mood to this. It lacks joy. Watching this opening makes me feel that this is going to be a boring movie. But wait, the movie is boring so I guess the this opening succeeded, Good job opening, you succeeded in giving me a nice 40 minute nap, Kudos.
Next Jetlag Article: Song 2 Queen of my HeartFollow thehunchblog
This is the music from the Hunchback word (La Cite des Cloches) from the thrid installment of Kingdom Hearts; Dream Drop Distance.
It’s composed by Yoko Shimomura. You can tell that Shimomura took inspiration from Menken’s score especially from Sanctuary but it not a carbon-copy it’s it own thing and sounds epic. In fact the second piece is called “Le Sanctuaire.” This piece of music makes me want to play the game.
or those of you who don’t know the Kingdom Hearts Franchise is a co-venture with Disney and Square Enix. Square Enix is the owner of The Final Fantasy Franchise, of which I am a fan, I like Final Fantasy IX the best.Follow thehunchblog
I randomly discovered a Japanese Jazz group that calls themselves “Quasimode”. Doesn’t that sound very similar to our hunchback pal ‘Quasimodo”? Turns out that the name isn’t a reference, the name came from their pianist who says that the name means “mix, blend” (interview link) but I can’t seem to separate out the connection between the names. So I’m sorry to say that for me Quasimode will alway seem like a secret Hunchback reference.
As for their music, I like it, I think out of what I heard I like Last Nine Days the best, it’s off the The Land Of Freedom album. It would be so cool if they did a Hunchback/Notre Dame de Paris inspired album ^^…… mmm Notre Dame and Jazz, seems like an odd and cool combo.Follow thehunchblog
I have created a new Notre Dame de Paris Lens, “The Top Ten Worst Song of Notre Dame de Paris“. As much as I love NDdP I know not every song is that great or even good. I started this Lens a few weeks ago and finally decided to finish a few days ago. It was actually hard to come up with ten but I did, so find out which song are the worst of the show.
And feel free to disagree with me. So click the link to find out what they are and why……..Enjoy
2019 update- if you’re reading this in 2019, Squidoo no longer exists and this post will be removed at some point.Follow thehunchblog
So I was on Notre Dame de Paris fans on tumblr and saw that there is a Trance/Dance Remix of Belle (From Notre Dame de Paris). Yeah….. it’s not half bad…. I’m sure it could have been worse……. Okay I like it, I confess it’s exactly what I didn’t know I always wanted… Belle with the space sounds mixed with electric sounding violins… and you can deny it all you want but you know it awesome.
Go Here to have a listen,
Appartently it’s by Life Sentence, it’s Russian and it’s from 2003.
(Silly Photo-manipulation of Candice Parise as Esmeralda created by me)
I’d say that the songs in Der Glöckner von Notre Dame are good. Sure there are some weak songs but they’re thoughtful and the either drive the plot forward or develop a character. However the music is not without problems.
First off, I HATE, hate that Esmeralda doesn’t get a solo in this. With exception of the Archdeacon, Clopin and the gargoyles she the only character not get one. Now you maybe thinking “But Hunchblog the majority of the characters in this didn’t have their own songs. ” Well that is true but let’s face, each of the gargoyles couldn’t get their own song they’re a trio and as a trio they almost get a single song, Clopin may not a single song but he sings a lot as the narrator and the archdeacon is hardly even a character so he doesn’t count. Beside the plot pretty much revolves around her you’d think she’d get one but her only big songs has Quasimodo in it. I mean in Notre Dame de Paris every character got one even Fleur de Lys (Phoebus’ Fiancee) got one (La monture) and she is seldom even in the adaptations. So that was a BIG negative.
I also got bit tired of the gargoyles singing over people. I do think it was a great way to show that gargoyles are 100% in Quasimodo’s head but it’s gets a bit old after a while. I think the show kept putting the gargoyles in songs so that A Guy Like you wouldn’t feel out of place. Another thing that gets old is hearing Draußen (Out There) over and over again. Anytime the play wants to reenforce Quasimodo to the audience Draußen is played. Admittedly this maybe unfair because Die Glocken Notre Dames is the most overused as in the play this how Clopin does most of his narrating but since I’ve been judging off the CD it’s Draußen that got old.
So yeah the songs are good for the most part but what I think really helps a lot of these songs is that singing quality is better. Though I’ve picked on Draußen in this review, I much prefer it in this musical than in the Disney movie along with Ein Mann wie du (A Man like you). The singers are just much better and that helps the enjoyment of the songs. Conversely, Hellfire suffers for this and it’s not because the is bad, I mean he put emotionally intensity into the next song Esmeralda, but maybe Hellfire is Tony Jay’s and no one else compares. Esmeralda and Clopin are one the level though the cresendo at the end of Bell isn’t as powerful as Kendal but he does a great job otherwise.
The musical does make the recycled Disney movie songs feel like it’s own which is nice, you don’t feel like their just simply lifted from the movie and put in to a musical. And while I do prefer Notre Dame de Paris Der Glöckner von Notre Dame has wonderful music. Just wish Esmeralda got one song to herself.
Next Time – The Production; SetsFollow thehunchblog
This is the Ninth Part (or the last part) of my review on the music of Der Glöckner von Notre Dame
Grand Finale or Ultimo Finale is the ending and occurs in two parts. The Finale is where the two most famous differences occurs; The death of Frollo by Quasimodo and the death of Esmeralda. Apparently the translator Michael Kunze campaigned to have Esmeralda die which makes it more like the book, though her death is by a different method. Kunze’s reasoning for this is that Esmeralda’s death would be viewed by European audiences as moving and more romantic of an ending. We’ll see how the American Broadway version handles this, though I kind of hope they keep the German ending.
The Final starts with Frollo pronouncing Esmeralda’s sentence then it goes into “song” portion. I use the word song in quotes because the Finale is a melody piece as it uses songs from throughout the show with one exception. So it starts pretty much the same as the movie with Sanctuary playing complete with latin lyrics as Esmerlada starts being burned and Quasimodo saves her and proclaiming sanctuary. Then Phoebus starts railing the people of Paris with the tune of Einmal (Once). Then the scene shifts back to Quasimodo who is defending Notre Dame from Frollo and his minions as he sings the tune of Wie aus Stein (Made of Stone).
After he pours the led from Notre Dame Quasimodo checks in on Esmeralda who is dying. My guess is she dying of asphyxia which is a condition of severely deficient supply of oxygen in body that arises from being unable to breathe normally. In her case this occurred from the fire. Anyway Quasimodo and Esmeralda have little conversation while Draußen (Outside) is played in the background. Esmeralda thanks Quasimodo for being her friend and then sings Hoch über der Welt (High above the World) and then the conversation continues for a couple more lines and then she dies. After she dies Frollo comes in and sings about how he happy to be free of her to the tune of Esmeralda but he sings this in a creepy, off balanced way. Quasimodo gets mad and the song shifts to a new melody with gargoyle singing with the latin choir. The gargoyle basically sing that God strikes the wicked, so the gargoyles, or aspects of Quasimodo’s own mind are telling him that he should kill Frollo, which he does by throwing Frollo off of Notre Dame, like in the book. I will point out that Quasimodo in the book does this in a fit of rage and here it’s a little more pre-mediated. After this the gargoyles sing Zuflucht (Refuge) about how the world is both cruel and kind. Quasimodo then sings Draußen (Outside) and sings about how he must live out there with all the pain, sorrow and fear that world can bring. He the carries Esmeralda outside and is joined by Phoebus. The ensemble then sing Einmal with as Quasimodo disappears. Then Clopin in his narrator role sings Die Glocken Notre Dames (The Bells of Notre Dame) and it’s pretty akin to the reprise at the end of the movie.
It’s vague what happens to Quasimodo but given how he sings about living it is doubtful that Quasimodo goes off to die. Also considering the two deaths this pretty much same except for Quasimodo and Esmeralda epic running away scene, that’s not there either.
So both Musically and plot wise we have a lot going on. However it’s a fitting ending. All the songs used here fit well together so while it could have felt a bit all over the place the emotional intensity flows well from one into the next. So if you like all these song before you’ll like them here.
Next time – A conclusion of the music
This is the eighth part of my review on the music of Der Glöckner von Notre Dame
Wie aus Stein
Wie aus Stein is Quasimodo’s despair song. The song is lifted from the movie when the gargoyles are trying to convince Quaismodo to save Esmeralda who is moments away from death. In the musical this scene occurs the night before Esmeralda is to be sentenced and instead of a short scene between the gargoyles and Quasimodo, we have a song.
This song is Quasimodo at his most angry and his most broken-hearted. He is clearly angry at the gargoyles as they don’t understand his pain as they’re made of stone and he wishes he was like them. He regrets his emotions and wishes they would go away. I really can’t not imagine the Disney movie Quasimodo getting this angry and morose. Plus it’s nice to hear Quasimodo really telling off the gargoyles.
The title Wie aus Stein (Made of Stone) is taken from the original book when Quasimodo mournfully asks why he wasn’t made of stone. He’s not exactly angry in the book but more sad that he is in love with Esmeralda and can’t really do anything about it.
Musically this song is great it has wonderful tension and drama. Quasimodo voice moves though these soft parts like suppressing rage and parts him fully expressing his rage with great power in his voice. Quasimodo’s angry and despair really come though.
I really enjoy this song, it’s a great way to showcase the singer for Quasimodo. I find this song oddly additive and it’s one of my favorites from the show.
Watch a video clip of Wie aus Stein here
Einmal (Once) is the song Someday which was created as a second option for the song used in the “Esmeralda Prayer” sequence in the movie. However Someday was used as the credit song which had two pop song recording.
Einmal occurs after Frollo gives Esmeralda his ultimatum in jail (Be Mine or Die). Esmeralda considers taking it if only to save Phoebus. Phoebus tells her she should do it for herself, so she can live. Esmeralda says she doesn’t consider a life with Frollo living. She then sings along with Phoebus and eventually with Clopin and the ensemble about how she hopes the world will learn after countless war and bloodshed to live and not to hate.
Unlike Someday, Einmal’s lyrics are less soft and gentle. In Someday. Esmeralda sings about the world becoming more mature and in Einmal she sings about the world learning after making mistakes. The song ends as Esmeralda about to be put to death which makes this song all the more poignant and dramatic as Esmeralda dying wish for the world.
Muscially it’s a pretty song and while I like the inclusion of Phoebus, Clopin and the crowd, this means Esmeralda does not get a solo song of her own, which I find a bit sad. But as the song stands on it’s own merits, it is quite lovely and powerful with the overlays of singing. And like Wie aus Stein it’s high on my list of favorites from the show.
Watch a video clip of Einmal here
A Final Thought on these songs;
Wie aus and Einmal are very nice counterpoints to each other in both mood and meaning. In Wie aus Stein we have Quasimodo who is depairing in life and in Einmal we have Esmeralda who has hope as she about to die. It a just a nice example of selfness vs altruism in the show, and I love contrast.
Next Time – The Grand Finale,
This is the seventh part of my review on the music of Der Glöckner von Notre Dame
Weil du liebst
Weil du liebst (Because/Out of Love) occurs after Frollo makes his threat against Esmeralda and the Court of Miracle while Phoebus is trying to convince Quasimodo to leave Notre Dame and help warn her.
Unlike the Disney movie, Phoebus is softer and more understanding with Quasimodo’s hesitation. Phoebus understands why Quasimodo does not want to leave and he tells him it because of the love that he must do it. It also interesting to mention that Phoebus has not solidify a romance with Esmeralda yet. Unlike the Disney movie, it’s the Archdeacon who asks Quasimodo to hide Phoebus. So Phoebus is being a bit more altruistic here.
Also I want to point out that Phoebus was a jerk in this scene in the Disney movie. He told Quasimodo that he owns Esmeralda for helping him. However Esmeralda helped Quaismodo from the crowd partly because she pulled on stage and she had a sense of guilt about it and Quasimodo already repay her when he helped her escape Notre Dame, so he actually owns her nothing, bad argument Phoebus. This scene/song is a VAST improvement to the Disney counterpart.
Musically this song uses a bit from Ein bißchen Freude at the beginning but it turns gentle and sweet. The gargoyles get in on that song and help convince Quasimodo to help.
It’s a nice song but I feel that it exists more for the reprise than the set-up.
Tanz der Zigeuner
Tanz der Zigeuner (Dance of the Gypsies) replaces the song “Court of Miracles” from the movie. On it’s own it’s a fun little instrumental dance number that provides levity before the show gets dark.
Musically it sounds like Gypsy music with the melody from Tanz auf dem Seil. I just wish this could have existed along side Court of Miracles since it was one my favorites from the movie. Oh well, can’t have everything I suppose. Still it a nice addition to the show and I enjoy it.
Weil du liebst (Reprise)
Weil du liebst Reprise a.k.a Esmeralda & Phoebus are in love and Quasimodo gets the shaft. So after Phoebus and Quasimodo warn the Gypsies, Phoebus and Esmeralda decide to leave Paris together. While Esmeralda and Phoebus declare their love Quaismodo watches them heartbroken.
The song gives Phoebus and Esmeralda a love song which was sorely missed from the movie but in this song the love story has a complexity. Neither of them ever envisioned being in love. The song also works to contrast against Quasimodo’s heartbreak better than in the movie. In the movie Phoebus and Esmeralda kiss and Quasimodo thinks of Heaven’s Light and he rips up an Ace of Hearts playing card. In this song Quasimodo pain is more felt though his singing. But then against Quasimodo in the show is a bit more angry and less “boyish”. However the presentation of Phoebus and Esmeralda singing lovingly against Quasimodo’s pain could have worked in the movie as the focus doesn’t leave Quaismodo which was very important from the Disney movie directors (eye-roll) and it doesn’t kill the pace as they sing this before fleeing which makes more sense than a wedding.
Musically the song uses Weil du liebst, Das Licht des Himmels and a touch of Draußen at the end.
I really enjoy this song it provided enough levity and yet angst before the ball drops completely on the angst.
Next Time- Wie aus Stein & EinmalFollow thehunchblog