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Ratings Update

June 14, 2014

Synchrotones makes changes to its ratings system. For a long time I felt that I should reserve the maximum score (five stars) for true classics like “Schindler’s List” or “Ben Hur”. That’s all good and noble, but it’s not exactly fair on current film scores and their composers. Sometimes it takes time to become a classic. Having said that, even classics have flaws. And just because something is considered a classic, doesn’t necessarily mean I enjoy listening to it. So, should I really concern myself with trying to define a classic, or with what others say is one? Should I not simply concern myself with whether I like it or not?

I claim to take a no-nonsense approach to reviewing and I pride myself on the ‘what does it sound like and is it any good‘ slogan. Yet, I put up restrictions where the rating was concerned. Some reviewers have done away with ratings altogether for this very reason. I applaud them, but I wouldn’t go that far myself. I do believe there is merit to them. I have however updated my rating system and have ‘opened up’ the five-star rating. The only restriction is the quality of the music, not some elusive barrier in my head. As a result, some scores have had their ratings amended. Not too many, just a few. “Broadchurch” and “Gravity” have been upgraded from 4 to 4.5 stars, to name but two examples. The first score to now receive the full five stars is James Newton Howard’s fabulous “Maleficent“. And another one is on its way… Stay Tuned.

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One Comment
  1. A great idea! I keep running into this problem myself, and too have “loosened up” the five star score, if you will. Something can be a perfect five stars on its own but, when weighed against something like Star Wars or LOTR it can pale in comparison. Such a conundrum!

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