Thursday, September 08, 2011

Which is Better?

Howard Shore
10 sample films:

Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring
The Aviator
Gangs of New York
The Cell
A History of Violence
High Fidelity
Dead Ringers
The Departed


Hans Zimmer
10 sample films:

The Dark Knight
The Thin Red Line
The Lion King
Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead’s Man Chest
As Good As It Gets
Sherlock Holmes
Driving Miss Daisy

Which do you prefer? Let us know in the comments section


  1. Very tough choice, but I have to go with Zimmer. His Gladiator score is what got me 'into' film score per say, so I'll always hold him in very high esteem, if though listening to more of his work since then has demonstrated that his range as a composer is somewhat limited.

  2. This is tough because while I think Zimmer has the more eye popping resume, he's terribly repetitive and worse yet, never shy of 'sampling' bits off of other scores/musical tracks. Of course he's no where near as bad as James Horner so that works in his favor.

    Shore on the other hand I think is mint at getting his scores to match the tone and feel of the scenes they are meant to reflect. When I listen to one of his scores I can immediately relate it to the film and invision the sequence. Especially with his more recent work. Though he often falls into the pitfall of producing scores for films where the score is the backburner to other pieces or not an integral component.

    On balance, I'll give the edge to Shore for this battle.

  3. Phips1:43 pm

    Howard Shore...i know your list only has 1 LotR film on it but what he did with that trilogy was amazing. He composed about 12 hours of music all at once...and it was a spectacular score.

    However, the Dark Knight's score was great as well.

  4. I like both of them though I'm going with Hans Zimmer for his work on Inception and The Thin Red Line. Yet, I also love Shore for his work with David Cronenberg and the LOTR trilogy.

  5. Two words: High Fidelity

  6. Yea I'm going with Zimmer although Shore certainly isn't too shabby either. Love the Gladiator soundtrack, and most of the other ones are very much "listenable" unlike something like the Crash OST for example.

  7. @edgar - Zimmer did a great job with Gladiator, I also really enjoyed his score for The Dark Knight

    @Univarn - Complete agree that Zimmer is not as bad as Horner when it comes to sampling. As for Shore, I am really fond of his work with Cronenberg.

    @Philps - I only listed one LOTR film not to tip the scales one way or the other. I agree that he did a phenomenal job on that trilogy.

    @thevoid - While I am not a huge fan of The Thin Red Line, Zimmer's score is outstanding

    @Duke - I had a feeling that film would sway your vote. To be honest, I found his work in that film the least memorable of the ten listed

    @Castor - While the Crash's score has its flaws, I loved what Shore did with The Cell

  8. I can't decide. I mean Lord of The Rings in itself deserves the win, but as has been noted I can't really find fault in Gladiator either. Phuuuuuh, if I have to go with someone... It's Shore.

  9. It's Shore easily for me. Zimmer just rubs me the wrong way,and I almost always feel like his scores are competing with the general sound for supremacy.

  10. Clint Mansell.

    Oh, he's not a choice? Zimmer, then.

  11. @Anna - If I have to chose between LOTR and Galdiator, LOTR will win.

    @Andrew - Zimmer seems to rub a lot of people the wrong way. Many find him too generic.

    @Dylan – Mansell has done some great scores, but even he could not save Sonny. Man, what a horrible film.


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