The Patriot Deception: Seeking God’s Peace
In the summer of 2004, my family made a short film for a film festival and I, as the music major in the family, wrote the score. Now, seven years later, I’m rewriting it. Why? Partially because I need the practice scoring, and the video is handy. Partially because when I wrote it the first time, I didn’t have a clue what I was doing, having never written that much music before, having never written for film before, and having never had any orchestration or composition training (unless you count Music Theory I-III). So I decided to see if, having achieved a Master’s in film composition, I could do a better job this time around.
I spent a LOT of time revising this cue after the first writing. It’s interesting, trying to revise your own music yourself and trying to figure out how to improve it, instead of relying on a teacher to give you advice. I listened to John Williams, listened to James Newton Howard, stared at my music in Sonar, opened it in Sibelius and put them side by side, and just messed with ideas between the two. I’ve never done that before…I doubt my old laptop would even have had the memory to support such usage! I also remembered that there is such a thing as a reverb effect….I think that helped the overall sound a lot, since even a little reverb really helps to gel the sounds and give them an atmosphere so they sound like they are actually being performed in a space instead of being MIDI sounds flying through a computer.
I started with a scene near the end of the movie, so it won’t introduce itself very much. Basically, Joshua Kooper, the main character, has spent most of the movie trying to find his wife and kids while trying to keep the government convinced that he has been “reformed” to their way of thinking, as opposed to the Christian seeking to keep his country from falling apart that he was seven years previously when they captured him and stowed him in a R.E.S.C.U.E.S facility to brainwash him. In this scene, Joshua has finally been reunited with his wife and is discussing the future. He says he needs to find the other patriots; his wife begs him not to leave her again since she just got him back. He then comes into the living room late that night for an anguished prayer session–he doesn’t really want to leave again, but he feels called to fight for the country’s survival.
The video didn’t bounce right in Sonar–the audio was lined up incorrectly–so I just have two versions of the audio, one with dialogue and one without. The one with dialogue is 30-60 seconds longer since I included some of it on either side of the music for some context.