symphony of voices for Morricone-

from Valerio Cappelli, sent to Venice

In Giuseppe Tornatore’s «Ennio» the portrait of the artist with a crowd of testimonies

A portrait that grabs and swallows, like his music that creates a parallel film. Ennio Morricone tells. But there is much more in the monumental documentary (it will go to theaters for Lucky Red, 2 and a half hours where there is emotion, not flattery) of his friend Giuseppe Tornatore, which he had in all his films, except one, the music of the great composer who passed away last year. Ennio it is a symphony of voices and images where the intuitions and imaginative capacity of a complex personality, “enigmatic even if it doesn’t seem like it”, as Gino Paoli says, is reconstructed between archives and interviews. “I am a diverse and self-contrary composer,” Morricone says in the film.

We see him doing gymnastics before dawn in the living room, as he used to do. «I never thought that music was a destiny, dad explained the notes to me when he was 6 years old. In solfeggio I took 3. Then I became good. When my father was no longer a good trumpet player I stopped writing for that instrument ». Ennio sometimes speaks of humiliation (“I used to play for US soldiers after the war from which I went with the saucer of alms”) and of the hostility of the academic world, so much so that the first soundtracks, behind which there is a mountain of knowledge, he wrote secretly. His teacher Goffredo Petrassi said: «Music for the cinema is an anti-artistic activity. You will recover … ».

The moral dilemmas: «Per The Bible in Huston, De Laurentiis called me to replace Petrassi, I felt guilty »; the brief recruitment to Rai: «They told me, you cannot make a career here and your music cannot be performed. But then what was I for? »; the influence of Stravinsky: “I heard him being directed to his trials by the opening of an open trial”; the paradox of the lack of love for melody: «Its combinations are finished, I transposed the principles of dodecaphony into tonal music», and Nicola Piovani: «The more Ennio covered the melody, the more it came out»; the fights: “Oliver Stone wanted sounds that evoked the racing of Tom & Jerry, but what did you call me for a cartoon? »; envy: «In ’69 I composed for 21 films, they said it wasn’t all my stuff».

And then, the apprenticeship as an arranger of which Gianni Morandi says: «He colored the songs, he made them become something else»; pride: «Sergio Leone asked me to remake the Deguello di Rio Bravo with John Wayne. I said to myself: now I’m going to screw him, I’m Leone »; the passion for chess: «There too there is the desire to improve, the resistance to opposing forces»; injustice: «In Mission I intertwined oboe, motet and ethnic music. The Oscar went to Hancock who had not written original music, the hall protested ». And then the two belated statuettes, “they were the apologies that all of Hollywood owed him,” says producer David Puttnam: he dedicated them, moving, to his beloved Maria: “She’s the first to hear my music, if she likes it I’ll deliver it to the directors “. “Maria – says Caterina Caselli – has created a defense perimeter so that her genius was free”.

A precursor who used jars, the fife the anvil, the bells in Leone’s western movies. Here is Clint Eastwood: “Never had such operatic music been heard” for cowboys. Raffaela Leone on her father Sergio: «They had a friendly, complicated relationship, they argued even violently». Leone played a trick on him: “Kubrick wanted me for Clockwork Orange, he told him that he was already busy with him ». Tornatore had 10 hours of material. Joan Baez: «Sacco and Vanzetti it is a hymn “; Bertolucci: «He had a round face, glasses … He looked like one of the Peanuts to me». Springsteen opens the concerts with the music of Ennio: “The verse of the coyote is the most creative thing ever heard.” And Tarantino: “I grew up with him.” The enigma Ennio who took the disguised sweetness to Heaven. He closes the curtain like this: «Music must be thought about, before it is written, about what to put on the blank page. But a thought in search of what? We do not know”.

September 10, 2021 (change September 10, 2021 | 09:24)

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