Film score and contemporary nostalgia: on the collaboration between Paul Thomas Anderson and Jonny Greenwood
Karpat, Colleen Bevin Kennedy
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Film scores in certain contemporary films which narrate stories from different time periods display intriguing patterns in how they evoke distinct emotions and how they underscore the film’s temporal and spatial configurations. This thesis investigates the role of the film score in Paul Thomas Anderson’s recent four feature films such as There Will Be Blood (2007), The Master (2012), Inherent Vice (2014), and Phantom Thread (2017). By adopting Svetlana Boym’s (2001) framework of nostalgia, this thesis aims to reveal how the film score accentuates the dialogue between historically significant individual and/or collective components of the time period depicted, and focuses on differences and similarities in evoking the past through the accompaniment of film score. Furthermore, since the original scores of these films have been composed by Jonny Greenwood, this study also adopts an auteurist approach towards the issue in order to reveal recurring patterns from the collaboration between the director and composer.