Jeymes Samuel is a talent that you should be so lucky as to have a chance to Zoom with. Already a successful musician, Samuel made a terrific feature filmmaking debut with the western The Harder They Fall. The movie is incredibly cool, vibrant, and actually important, pointing out a whole group of people that the genre has all but previously erased. Well made on the writing and directing front, the score and music in general are just further evidence that as much as cinematic tunes get less love than they used to, they’re still vital to the medium. With his film still contending for Oscar, especially his tune “Guns Go Bang” in Best Original Song, I recently Zoomed with the man to discuss filmmaking, music, and plenty of things in between.
This is some of what I had to say about his film in my review:
Co-writer/director Jeymes Samuel has style to spare here. Along with co-writer Boaz Yakin, Samuel a standard sort of western, complete with action and drama. The same goes for the evocative score, by Samuel himself, which is terrific. That being said, it’s in his direction that The Harder They Fall stands out. The visuals and creativity that it’s all staged with really jumps off the screen. Samuel is having fun honoring the genre, but doing it in his own way, and it shows.
So, normally this is where I’d prep you for the interview a bit before turning your attention to the embed below. Well, that’s not the case today, as the file is, for lack of a better word, missing. However, instead of just wasting the opportunity, I figured I’d mention, at least for now, some of the highlights of our chat. At the beginning of the conversation, we bonded over a shared appreciation of the DIY quality of Kevin Smith and Clerks, which he said just makes you want to make a movie. He also talks about how a Christopher Nolan work is more like listening to a brilliant professor, whereas Smith. Robert Rodriguez (specifically El Mariachi), or hopefully his own work can inspire future filmmakers. We also found out as we discussed The Harder They Fall‘s score that we both love Clint Mansell‘s one for The Fountain (along with Cameron Crowe soundtracks and Almost Famous in general as a top five flick). He truly was a delight, especially during funny exchanges like when he remarked that he has the best relationship as a director with his composer, since it’s with himself. So, hopefully it all gets sorted out, since this is a good one…
*If/when we figure out the audio/video, it will be here. Stay tuned!*
The Harder They Fall is currently available on Netflix!