KFMF: Great composers light the beacon for 10th anniversary

By Ray Bennett

KRAKOW – The Krakow Film Music Festival celebrated its 10th anniversary on Saturday night with a spectacular concert of movie and television themes by some of the greatest names in film composing.

The three-hour show at the packed Tauron Arena included themes and songs by James Newton Howard, Jan A.P. Kaczmarek, Alan Menken, John Williams, Alan Menken and Howard Shore, who was awarded the annual Kilar Award. Continue reading

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KFMF: Septuagenarian Giorgio Moroder rocks the night

By Ray Bennett

KRAKOW – Composer and music producer Giorgio Moroder showed that he has lost none of his steam at 77 as he was the special guest dee-jay at an Eighties-style late night street party as part of the Krakow Film Music Festival.

Dance2Cinema: Midnight Express Party was a free show on Jan Nowak-Jeziorański Square next to the city’s train station that attracted a huge crowed eager to disco-dance the night away. Continue reading

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KFMF: Jean-Michel Bernard puts fresh face on old film scores

By Ray Bennett

KRAKOW – With charm, skill and a good deal of wit, French pianist, composer, educator, orchestrator, and music producer Jean-Michel Bernard provided a fresh perspective on a range of well-known movie and television themes on Thursday night. Continue reading

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KFMF: Doldinger’s ‘Neverending Story’ score charms festival

By Ray Bennett

KRAKOW – The presence of German saxophonist and film composer Klaus Doldinger appeared to electrify conductor Christian Schumann and the Sinfonietta Cracovia as they performed the maestro’s score for “The Neverending Story” at the ICE Krakow on Thursday night. Continue reading

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KFMF: Krakow salutes one of its own: Abel Korzeniowski

By Ray Bennett

Krakow – Composer Abel Korzeniowski, who left Poland to find success scoring films in Hollywood, was given the key to the city of his birth and standing ovations following a concert of his music at the ICE Krakow Congress Centre on Wednesday night. Continue reading

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Krakow Film Music Festival celebrates first decade

By Ray Bennett

KRAKOW – The 10th annual Krakow Film Music Festival (KFMF) kicked off today and as organisers looked back on the domestic and international success of the Polish event, there was one key element: “The magic word is passion,” said Jan A.P. Kaczmarek. Continue reading

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When life meant happy days for Erin Moran

By Ray Bennett

LONDON – “There is a lot of pressure. You’ve got to be thin. You’ve got to look pretty. You’ve got to look good. There’s a lot of competition, There’s too much to worry about.” That was “Happy Days” star Erin Moran speaking to me in 1982 just before the launch of “Joanie Loves Chachi”. Continue reading

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As he turns 80, ten Jack Nicholson films you should see

By Ray Bennett

LONDON – The phone rang on my desk at The Hollywood Reporter and a deep, familiar voice said, “Ray? Hey, it’s Jack.” It was in the run-up to the Academy Awards in 1998 and I was expecting the call but I was impressed that he knew he didn’t need to say his full name. Continue reading

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FILM REVIEW: ‘The Sense of an Ending’

By Ray Bennett

LONDON – The problem with Ritesh Bafra’s new film “The Sense of an Ending”, which opens in the U.K. today, is that it makes very little sense and it has no ending.

Reviews of the Man Booker Prize-winning novel on which the movie is based suggest the same is true of the book but no doubt it is saved by the fine writing of Julian Barnes. Continue reading

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Recalling … Jack Nicholson at the launch of ‘Cuckoo’s Nest’

By Ray Bennett

NEW YORK 1975 – Jack Nicholson appears in the breakfast room of a fancy Manhattan hotel on a Saturday morning in a baggy brown suit, no tie, his dark shirt collar inside his jacker, and dark glasses. He lights a Marlboro and scrounges coffee and says “You mean you guys actually got up for breakfast?” He curses lazily, shaking his head. “I’m wrecked.” Continue reading

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