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January 13, 2013 at 05:56 PM EST

Rust and Bone

Rust and Bone took you back to France. Can you talk a little bit about the collaboration?

I’ve scored all the movies that Jacques Audiard has directed. It’s a long love story between us, trying to find a voice that would belong to his films only. I’ve grown as he was growing as a director and there is a real sense of continuity if you listen to the first scores I wrote for him in the early 90s and then for Rust and Bone. It’s really connected. This film is obsessively dark with a great sense of humor and some very short but intense moments of violence. He’s a real mix of Scorcese and Jean-Pierre Melville. So there’s something very French and at the same time something that doesn’t hide the influence of the American cinema. On that respect there’s always some beautiful moments for me to score in his films. He likes music in his films to bring something that is not yet on the scene.

What was your favorite moment from the film?

I very much like the last moments of the film when they go by the lake. There’s a very gentle melody there. And then the scene in the hospital I wrote for a sextet for three violins and three cellos. And it sounds really, really intimate and fragile. I asked the players to play with one hair of their bow – at the edge of breaking a sound. And it creates something very fragile and very tender. And you see this big guy played by Matthais Schoenaerts with his broken hands touching his little boy and holding his hands and being so moved. The music tries to bring the emotion without being pushy and melodramatic.

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