Friday, November 23, 2012

Nightwish: Imaginaerum

Imaginaerum by Nightwish [title in the credits] / Imaginaerum / Imaginaerum [release title]. CA/FI © 2012 PCF Imaginaerum Le Film Inc / Solar Films Inc. Oy. P: Markus Selin, Neil Dunn, Jukka Helle, André Rouleau. D: Stobe Harju. Co-D: Mark Roper. SC: Stobe Harju, Mikko Rautalahti, Richard Jackson - story: Stobe Harju, Tuomas Holopainen - inspired by the Nighwish album (2011). DP: Benoît Beaulieu - colour - 2,35:1 - digital post-production: Generator Post. PD: Elisabeth Williams. Cost: Ginette Magny. Makeup: Nicole Lapierre. Hair: Réjean Goderre. VFX Supervisor: Joshua Sherrett. VFX Producer: Carole Bouchard. VFX: The Workshop. VFX: Vision Globale. VFX: Alchemy 24. Concept: Toxic Angel. Optometrist credited. M reinterpreted by Petri Alanko - M by Nightwish - The Young Musicians London - The Looking Glass Orchestra - orchestra and choirs arranged, orchestrated and directed by Pip Williams - conducted by James Shearman. S: Pierre-Jules Audet. ED: Mathieu Bélanger. Casting: Rosina Bucci. Nadia Rona. Starring Nightwish: Tuomas Holopainen (Tom Whitman, age 47), Anette Olzon (Ann), Jukka Nevalainen (Jack), Emppu Vuorinen (Emil), Marco Hietala (Marcus). With: Marianne Farley (Gem Whitman), Francis X. McCarthy (Tom Whitman, age 70), Quinn Lord (Tom Whitman, age 10), Ilkka Villi (Mr. White / Theodore Whitman), Joanna Noyes (Ann, age 73), Keyanna Fielding (Gem Whitman, age 7), Stéphane Demers (twisted tin solder), Ron Lea (Dr. Jansson), Hélène Robitaille (sphere dancer), Glenda Graganza, Madison McAlee, Victoria Ann Jung. Circus clowns, circus acrobats, and tin soldiers are credited. Loc: Montréal (Québec, Canada). 90 min. Original in English. Released by Oy Nordisk Film Ab with Finnish / Swedish subtitles by Timo Porri / Saliven Gustavsson. 2K DCP viewed at Tennispalatsi 7, Helsinki, 23 Nov 2012 (theatrical premiere day).

"Omistettu mun tytöille" ["Dedicated to my girls"]

NIGHTWISH is a symphonic metal band from Kitee, Finland, the most successful Finnish rock band worldwide. A trademark: the lead singer is a coloratura soprano.   
Anette Olzon - lead vocals 2007-2012
Tuomas Holopainen - keyboards, synthesizers
Emppu Vuorinen - guitars
Jukka Nevalainen - drums, percussions
Marco Hietala - bass, vocals

IMAGINAERUM (2011) is the seventh studio album by Nightwish, a concept album telling the story of an old composer on his deathbed, reminiscing of his youth.
1. "Taikatalvi" ["Magic Winter"] Tuomas Holopainen 2:35
2. "Storytime" Holopainen 5:22
3. "Ghost River" Holopainen 5:28
4. "Slow, Love, Slow" Holopainen 5:51
5. "I Want My Tears Back" Holopainen 5:08
6. "Scaretale" Holopainen 7:32
7. "Arabesque" (instrumental) Holopainen 2:57
8. "Turn Loose the Mermaids" Holopainen 4:20
9. "Rest Calm" Holopainen 7:02
10. "The Crow, the Owl and the Dove" Holopainen, Marco Hietala 4:10
11. "Last Ride of the Day" Holopainen 4:33
12. "Song of Myself" Holopainen 13:38
13. "Imaginaerum" (instrumental) Holopainen, Pip Williams 6:18

1. "Find Your Story" Tuomas Holopainen 2:30
2. "Orphanage Airlines" Tuomas Holopainen 4:34
3. "Undertow" Tuomas Holopainen 5:17
4. "Spying in the Doorway" Tuomas Holopainen 3:03
5. "A Crackling Sphere" Tuomas Holopainen 3:59
6. "Sundown" Tuomas Holopainen 5:33
7. "Wonderfields" Tuomas Holopainen 5:31
8. "Hey, Buddy" Tuomas Holopainen 3:03
9. "Deeper Down" Marco Hietala (music), Tuomas Holopainen (Lyrics) 3:28
10. "Dare to Enter" Tuomas Holopainen 1:50
11. "I Have to Let You Go" Tuomas Holopainen 8:16
12. "Heart Lying Still" Tuomas Holopainen 4:00
13. "From G to E Minor" Tuomas Holopainen 2:32
The facts are from Wikipedia.

Tuomas Holopainen: "My initial thoughts about an eventual Nightwish theme album and movie date back to the summer of 2007. Suffering from the hangover of finishing the Dark Passion Play album I already mused about ways to bring the band's already enormously ambitious and sprawling mode of expression to the next level. Five years have passed since that moment of inspiration, and a wild dream is coming true as Imaginaerum the movie gets its premiere on the Hartwall Arena on Saturday, 10 November, 2012."

"Imaginaerum is the fulfillment of one sincere and particular vision and wish. It is not a project that was calculated or deliberately premeditated at any level. The movie has not been made in order to promote the band or the album. It was made because we wanted to tell a story. A story prepared with love and devotion, about the power of imagination, about life, and about what matters most in the end."
"The completion of the movie has been a journey rich in experiences albeit full of unexpected challenges. It has required a devotion of many years and an inhumanely sustained effort from many talented people. They all deserve deepest thanks: together we have achieved something innovative, extraordinary and timeless. Imaginaerum is an ambitious and original trip which disobeys norms and looks very much like its band." Tuomas Holopainen, Nightwish (production information) (my translation)

Stobe Harju's remarks: "Imaginaerum by Nightwish is a musical fantasy which breathes the worlds of David Lynch, Neil Gaiman, and Cirque du Soleil. It is an innovative blend of storytelling and music, a strange tale about the power of imagination, and about what matters most in life". (my translation)

A musical fantasy about the power of imagination.

Howard Blake's song "Walking In The Air" from the animation favourite The Snowman (1982) belongs to the repertory of Nightwish, and Imaginaerum starts as an homage to that movie (with references in the score to the familiar piano chords of its theme song), but blends it with a completely different Christmas fantasy, Henry Selick and Tim Burton's The Nightmare Before Christmas.

The movie belongs to the tradition of Méliès, Cocteau, Burton, and Gilliam. It is a dance of death with imagery from gothic and macabre traditions, and also from visions of the circus, the cabaret and the night club. It is a dream play, a death dream where childhood, maturity and old age are simultaneous or parallel, in two generations. It is also about memory and dementia, about writing things down before they disappear, about the fear of madness before dying.

Critics have been unkind to this movie, but I see Imaginaerum as an act of respect from Nightwish towards its audience. They have always taken loving care of their imagery, and in this movie the imagery is accomplished in its most perfect form.

The visual quality is state of the art in the digital world.

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